UK Child and Student study visas


The UK's point based immigration system launched on January 1st 2021.

Your visa and requirements vary depending on which passport you hold, your age and how long you are coming to study.


Which visa do you need?

Existing Tier 4 visas are still valid but the Student route replaces the Tier 4 route for new applications including from EEA (European Economic Area) and Swiss passport holders who have not applied through the EU Settlement Scheme before 30th June 2021.

EEA and Swiss passport holders who have been resident in the UK prior to 31st December 2020 should apply through the EU Settlement Scheme before 30th June 2021 rather than the Student route.

Which passport do you hold?



  • The Student Route is open to EU/EEA and Swiss students as well as international students, but EU/EEA and Swiss students resident in the UK before 31st December 2020 should not apply through the Student route. Instead, they should apply to the EU Settlement Scheme before 30th June 2021. There is no charge and applications can be made online.
  • EU/EEA and Swiss students coming to the UK on or after 1st January 2021 will need to apply through the Student route before they arrive. This applies also to students who started their course remotely in autumn 2020.
  • EU/EEA and Swiss students can continue to visit the UK for up to 6 months, without applying for a visa and may participate in short term study.
  • All students applying through the new Student route will need to demonstrate they meet the required 70 points which will be achieved by demonstrating their offer from an approved educational institution, speak English and are able to support themselves financially during their studies in the UK.
  • Child Student and Student visas cost £348 and take ~3 weeks to be processed when applied for outside the UK and £475 (+ £19.20 Biometric fee) taking 8 weeks when applied from inside the UK. The Student Immigration Health Surcharge - £470 per year of visa – is also paid with the visa application and provides access to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) on generally the same basis as UK permanent residents.
  • Students 15 years and under (generally EU/EEA passport holders) may be invited to use the ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app on their phone to confirm their ID whereas non EU/EEA students and those aged 16+ may be required to attend an interview.
  • Visas that have been issued through the Tier 4 route are still valid and those eligible will still be able to apply for the Graduate Route when it opens in summer 2021.
  • There will be no limit on the number of talented and high potential international students studying in UK’s world-leading universities and it will be easier for the best international graduates to secure skilled jobs in the UK with our new Graduate route. International students who have completed undergraduate and master’s degrees in the UK will be able to stay for 2 years and those who have completed a PhD to stay for 3 years.

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