What is the difference between Standard and Priority processing of a UK visa?

19 Jan 2023, 08 mins ago

Recently, UK visa application processing times have significantly increased, and many candidates are wondering if it is possible to shorten the time it takes the UK authorities to consider their visa application. This may indeed be possible.

The processing service you chose for your visa application will determine how long it will take you to receive a decision on your application. The main two options inside and outside the UK are the standard and the priority processing routes.

The main differences between standard and priority processing for UK visas are time and cost.

Standard visa processing can take several weeks to months (depending on the visa category you are applying under). There is no additional fee for this, as it is included in the general application fee.

Applications submitted using the priority services will generally be processed much quicker, usually within 5 to 7 working days. There is an additional fee for this service. The exact fee will depend on the type of visa and location of its submission. For example, the current priority fee for visa applications submitted inside the UK is £500. In some locations a super priority service is also available, which generally turns the visa application around in 2 working days and is more expensive than the priority service. 

However, it is important to note that delays with Home Office processing times are still possible regardless of the service chosen, and therefore it is wise to allow sufficient time between submission of the visa application and any travel plans. 

Besides, faster processing services, such as the priority or super priority services, are not always available. These services are visa-category and location-specific, for example, when making an application for a Graduate visa, you can currently only apply using the standard service, whereas many countries offer priority and even super priority service for Skilled Worker visas.

The Home Office provides frequent updates regarding their visa processing services. It is therefore important to check current processing times and available services prior to making your application or any concrete travel plans.

How Gherson can assist

Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on UK visa matters. If you have any questions arising from this blog, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn to stay-up-to-date.

The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please do not hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.

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