Overview of UK Visas for Vietnamese
The Vietnamese community in the UK is fairly well-represented by a sizeable number of expatriates who were originally born in Vietnam.
The latest figures estimate that there are well over 100,000 Vietnamese-born or individuals with Vietnamese ancestry living in the UK.
As with many other immigrant communities, the highest concentration of Vietnamese expats is in London, particularly in the boroughs of Lewisham, Tower Hamlets and Southark. The Vietnamese community in Lewisham is so strong, in fact, that Vietnamese is the second most-common language spoken there.
For Vietnamese individuals looking to come to the UK, there are many options available through the UK’s visa and immigration system. There are, for example, visas available if you already have family members who are already settled in the UK, including if you have an eligible partner or spouse.
There are also a range of work visas available for those who wish to work in specific sectors in the UK, or those who are leaders or potential leaders in their field.
UK Family Visas for Vietnamese
The UK Family visa is a general visa intended for foreign nationals who already have a family member who is settled in the UK.
In order to be eligible, your family member must be a British or Irish citizen, or have some form of settled status in the UK, such as through indefinite leave to remain.
You will also only be eligible to apply if you are your family member’s:
- Spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner of at least 2 years
- Adult dependent relative
Each category of family member will have its own specific eligibility criteria that you must meet. For example, if you’re applying as a spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner of at least 2 years, you must meet a range of relationship, language and financial requirements.
This includes proving that you will have access to adequate accommodation in the UK without the need to access public funds.
Most types of Family visa will allow you to settle in the UK through applying for indefinite leave to remain after spending a certain amount of time in the UK.
UK Work Visas for Vietnamese
If you don’t have an eligible family member who you can join in the UK, you may instead wish to consider applying for a work visa instead.
Of the many work visas available in the UK, the most common is the Skilled Worker visa, which is intended as a general all-purpose visa for a variety of professionals and industries.
In order to be eligible for the Skilled Worker visa, you must meet certain language and job requirements, such as having a suitable job offer from an eligible sponsor that also meets minimum salary thresholds.
Other work visas available in the UK include the following:
- Health and Care Worker visa: for those who wish in health or care industries in the UK
- Scale-Up Worker visa: for individuals who wish to work alongside a rapidly-growing UK business
- Senior or Specialist Worker visa: for those who wish to come to the UK and work in their current employer’s UK branch
- International Sportsperson visa: for those who wish to work in professional sports industries, such as coaching or athletics
Many of these UK work visas will also allow you to apply for indefinite leave to remain after a certain period of time.
Global Talent Visa for Vietnamese
The Global Talent visa is a special type of UK visa aimed at leaders in certain fields such as academia, arts and culture, or digital technology.
It allows individuals who have proved themselves to be leaders or potential leaders to come and work in the UK for up to 5 years at a time.
To be eligible, you must either apply for endorsement to prove your credentials and potential for leadership, or provide proof that you’ve won an eligible award.
Once you’re in the UK on a Global Talent visa, you’ll be able to take up most forms of employment without any restrictions on how much you have to earn, or how many hours you must work.
However, you may have to meet certain specific eligibility requirements based on which field you’re a leader or potential leader in.
How Do I Apply for a UK Visa?
In almost all cases, you must apply for a UK visa online through the Gov.uk website before you travel to the UK.
It’s important not to travel to the UK until after you’ve had your visa application approved. This is because your approved visa essentially acts as your entry clearance into the UK, which refers to your right to cross the border into the UK.
To apply for a UK visa, you’ll have to go to the relevant page for your chosen visa on the Gov.uk website.
After making sure that you’ve read through all of the visa information given on the page, you can click to apply for that visa.
You will then be prompted to fill in several forms and provide personal information about yourself, your family and your personal situation. You will also be expected to provide a range of supporting documents, such as a copy of your passport or travel documents, and the specific evidence needed for your chosen visa.
After submitting the online form, you may then be expected to travel to a local visa application centre to give your biometrics information in the form of your fingerprints and a photograph.
You will then be contacted by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) once your application has been processed. They will let you know if your application has been refused or approved.
How Can IAS Help?
For many Vietnamese moving to a country such as the UK, the process can be a daunting and difficult one to take on. There are a number of factors to consider in the moving process, one of the most important being that you must ensure your visa application is completed and submitted in line with UK government guidelines.
If you need any additional assistance with applying for a UK visa, or you need to speak to a legal expert for advice on your specific case, IAS can help. We are expert legal advisers who have been working in the field of UK immigration for decades. Whatever your immigration issue, we’re on hand to help and assist.
Whether you’re unsure about which UK visa best fits your needs, need extra advice on how to apply, or require bespoke concierge services to help with the logistics of moving, we can help.
Last modified on July 17th, 2023 at 7:34 am
Need help with an immigration issue? Book a one-to-one advice session with one of our legal caseworkers.
We can complete your visa application on your behalf, taking the stress and hassle out of the process.
Fast Track Package
Need to submit an application quickly? We can help you complete and send it off in as little as 24 hours.
Ensure you have the greatest chance of a successful appeal with our legal support and guidance.
The Advice Package
With our Advice Package, you can book a one-to-one session with one of our legal team and receive bespoke advice tailored for your situation. We will review your case and give you expert advice on how best to proceed with your immigration matter. Reach out to a member of our team and book your session today.
The Application Package
Our Application Package is designed to help relieve the stress of immigration applications. One of our legal caseworkers will help you throughout the entire process, including establishing your eligibility for your chosen route, completing your application form to the highest standards and organising your documents. We will then submit it and monitor its status on your behalf.
The Fast Track Package
Our premium Fast Track Package is ideal if you need to submit an application quickly, such as if you need to meet a tight deadline. Our lawyers will work closely with you to see that your application is completed to the highest standards and ensure you get your application in on time, helping to take the stress and pressure off you.
The Appeal Package
Visa appeals can be a stressful process, especially if you’re relying on a specific visa to be approved. Our legal team can help you navigate the whole process and maximise your chances of a successful appeal, working alongside you to reach a favourable result. We can also represent you in immigration-related hearings and tribunals.
There are three UK visa application centres located in Vietnam, located in the following:
- Da Nang City
- Ho Chi Minh City
There are a range of groups and organisations whose aim it is to connect and support the Vietnamese and wider south-east Asian community in the UK. These include the following:
- Vietnamese Mental Health Services (VMHS)
- Community of Refugees from Vietnam – East London (CRVEL)
- New World Housing Association (NWHA)
- Vietnamese Family Partnership (VFP)
If you wish to visit the UK for short periods of time, such as to see friends, sightsee or engage in tourism, you will normally need to apply for a Standard Visitor visa.
All Vietnamese citizens must apply for a Visitor visa before travelling to the UK for any of the above reasons.
The process for applying for a Visitor visa is the same as applying for any other UK visa. You must apply for it online, and in advance of you travelling to the UK.
When applying for a Visitor visa, you must prove that you’ll follow certain criteria, such as leaving the UK at the end of your visit and not living in the UK for extended periods through frequent visits.