Please note: If you are looking for updates relating to COVID-19, please go to our COVID-19 news section. 

Possible IHS refund for new EU students who apply for a Student visa

The government guidance on Immigration Health Surcharge states that there are certain circumstances in which students may be entitled to a refund of their Immigration Health Surcharge. 

This states:

You can apply for a full or partial IHS refund if all of the following are true:

  • you’re a full-time student in UK higher education
  • your visa started on or after 1 January 2021
  • you have a European Healthcare Insurance Card (EHIC) issued in an EU country
  • you do not work

If you’re claiming as a full-time student with an EHIC, you can apply for a refund of the IHS you paid to cover any period starting on or after 1 January 2021. Applications open from 1 January 2022.

The amount you’re refunded will depend on the date your S1 certificate or EHIC runs out. confirms this is also available in Scotland as the government website only refers to England.

There are also other scenarios in which a student might be entitled to a full or partial IHS refund. You can read more about the refund policy below:

If you have any queries please contact the VISA Team.



Maintenance (living cost) increase from 1st Dec 2020

   The Student and Child Student routes, collectively referred to as the Student routes, were simplified and revised in the Home Office Statement of Changes HC 707 laid on 10 September 2020. The full statement of changes is available below:

This includes an increase in required maintenance levels (living costs) for the Student route and will now be £1,334 per month inside London and £1,023 outside London (paragraphs ST 12.3; CS 10.2).

New Points-based system from 2021

The UK is introducing a points-based immigration system from 2021.

This page will be updated with the latest information about the new points-based immigration system as it becomes available.

For the most up to date information, please review the guidance available on the website.

Sign up for email alerts to get updates on the new immigration system:

On 13 July 2020, the government set out further details on the UK’s points-based system. These new arrangements will take effect from 1 January 2021, once freedom of movement with the European Union (EU) has ended.

It will treat EU and non-EU citizens equally and aims to attract people who can contribute to the UK’s economy. Irish citizens will continue to be able to enter and live in the UK as they do now.


Immigration Health Surcharge rise to £470 a year for students from 27 Oct 2020

The Immigration Health Surcharge will increase from £300 a year to £470 a year for students on 27 October 2020. The Immigration (Health Charge) (Amendment) Order 2020 (SI 2020 No. 1086) was made on 6 October, and comes into force 21 days later. 

If you require a visa extension inside UK, or are in the process of applying for your visa outside UK, we recommend applying before this date if you are eligible to do so. Please contact the VISA Team for further information and advice. 

Entering the UK using the eGates

UK Border Force is getting ready for the expansion of eGates to nationals from seven additional countries at 15 major airports and Eurostar terminals for mid May 2019.These include Birmingham, East Midlands, London City, Luton, Stansted, Heathrow, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester, Newcastle, Bristol, Cardiff and Gatwick airport as well as Eurostar terminals in Brussels-Midi/Zuid and Paris Gare du Nord.

The eGate expansion will mean that eligible nationals from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the United States of America can use the automated eGates on arrival into the UK, free of charge. Nationals from these seven countries will also no longer need to complete a landing card on arrival.

However, some people from these seven countries who are visiting the UK for short term study (less than six months), specific reasons or certain types of work (such as Permitted Paid Engagements or with a Tier 5 Creative and Sporting certificate of sponsorship) will need to see an officer on arrival to receive their passport stamp which ensures that they can do the activities they are coming to the UK to do.

Please note you must not use the eGate if you are entering the UK as a student. You must see a Border Force Officer on arrival to stamp and activate your visa.

If you already have a student visa or a student biometric resident permit (BRP card) to allow you to study in the UK you can use the eGates on your return to the UK.

Police Registration office in Glasgow

For students in Glasgow the Nationality Office (who deal with police registration) are located at 2 French Street, Dalmarnock. For GCU London students and further information on what you need to do to register or update your certificate during this time, please see our page on police registration. You can update your certificate at any police station.

In order to register for the first time or update your police registration certificate you must provide evidence of the requirement to register with the police. The Home Office have started to send the approval of leave notification which shows the requirement to register, when contracting Further Leave to Remain in the UK, by email rather than by post.
You are recommended to print out a copy of this email and take it with you to your initial registration appointment or any police station when updating your certificate.

Online applications for Tier 4 in the UK

Please note that you must submit your application through VISA if in the UK. We will assist you with the online form, upload your supporting documents and book your biometric enrolment appointment with the  UK Visa and Citizenship Application Service (UKVCAS). For more information on the  process for applications, see our webpage Tier 4 inside the UK, and make an appointment to see an advisor.

Changes in application fees

From 29th March 2019, the cost of most visa applications from both inside and outside the UK have remained unchanged.

Entry Clearance (outside the UK):

Category Fee before 29 March 2019 Fee from 29 March 2019
Tier 4  £348  £348
Tier 4 dependant  £348  £348
Short Term Study  £97  £97
Standard Visitor  £93 £95
Extended Academic Visitor £186 £190
Extended Short Term Study £186 £186

Leave to Remain (inside the UK):

Category Fee before 29 March 2019 Fee from 29 March 2019
Tier 4 £475 £475 + £19.20 Biometric Enrolment fee
Tier 4 Dependant £475 £475 + £19.20 Biometric Enrolment fee

For Priority Applications, an additional fee of £500 and Super Priority Applications £800 from 29 March 2019 per applicant to be added onto the relevant fee above. Priority appointments for Biometric Enrolment at the UKVCAS can be booked at an additional fee of £100 per applicant.

Tuberculosis Testing - New countries

A number of countries have been added to the list of those requiring a TB test. If you are applying to come to the UK for 6 months or more and you are making your application from any of the following countries, you must now submit a TB testing certificate with your Tier 4 application.

For more information on where to get tested for TB, and the overall application process from your country, see the UKVI's country finder.

Parent's bank statements and supporting documents

The UKVI's internal staff guidance for tier 4 has recently given more information on the kind of documents that will be accepted if you are using your parents' bank statements in a tier 4 application. As of the most recent update, only a birth certificate, adoption certificate or court document showing the relationship between the student and parent(s) will be accepted. This does not include affidavits.

If you are intending to use your parents' banks statements as evidence of your maintenance, then please see an VISA adviser who can give you guidance on this.

Updating your contact details online

The UKVI has made a form available, allowing you to submit details of a change in address whilst you have a visa application in progress. You must still come and see VISA, and we will assist you in filling this out, and also advise you on how to change your details on your university record. Please note that if any other circumstances change, you will still need to fill out the paper MCC (Migrant Change of Circumstances) form. These are available from an VISA advisor, and again we will assist you with them.

Email enquiries from outside the UK now charged

The UKVI has introduced a charge from 1st June 2017 for all email enquiries sent from outside the UK, charging £5.48 per enquiry.

If you need to contact the UKVI after you have paid your deposit please contact the VISA Team or for GCU London: as they will contact the UKVI on your behalf, free of charge. We can obtain an answer quickly to your enquiry.