- Tier 5 Youth Scheme eligibility
- Eligibile countries
- Tier 5 required documents
- Mobility Scheme maintenance requirement
- What am I allowed to do?
- What am I not allowed to do?
- Who needs a Certificate of Sponsorship?
- How long does the process take?
- How long does the Mobility Scheme last
- Applying for the Scheme from abroad
- Frequently asked questions
- How can I get help from the IAS
Youth Mobility Scheme Application
The Tier 5 Mobility Scheme replaces the UK Working Holiday Visa Programme. This visa is for young people aged 18 to 30 who wish to live, work and travel in the UK for a period of up to two years.
Currently, only passport holders from certain countries who have an exclusive reciprocal agreement with the UK are eligible to apply under the Youth Mobility Scheme. British overseas citizens and British national overseas can also submit their forms, as long as they meet all the other requirements.
To embark on this journey and apply for a Tier 5 Visa or the Youth Mobility Scheme, get in touch with our team of professional immigration lawyers today.
Youth Mobility Scheme Visa eligibility
You can apply for a Tier 5 Visa if you:
- Are aged 18 to 30;
- Intend to live and work in the UK for up to 2 years;
- Have at least £1,890 in savings;
- Are a national of one of the countries enlisted in this Scheme or you hold any type of British citizenship;
- Have not previously spent time in the United Kingdom under any working or studying scheme;
- Do not have children under the age of 18 who are living with you or are financially dependent upon you;
- Have received a valid sponsorship certificate.
Applicants from specific countries may be required to meet additional requirements.
Which countries can apply for the Mobility Scheme?
Nationals aged 18 to 30 from the following countries are allowed to apply for the Tier 5 Visa;
- New Zealand
- Hong Kong
- Republic of Korea
The Scheme is also available for those who are British Overseas Territories citizens or British overseas nationals.
Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme required documents
Along with your application forms, you need to submit to the Home Office the following documents:
- Your current passport, or any other valid ID;
- A bank statement, showing that you owe at least £1,890 in savings;
- Your tuberculosis (TB) test results (if needed).
You are also required to provide a certified translation of any document that is not in English or Welsh.
Moreover, citizens of specific countries may need to produce additional evidence.
What is the Tier 5 Maintenance Requirement?
One of the eligibility criteria to apply for the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme is to have personal savings of at least £1,890. This sum can be in the form of cash funds. Other accounts and financial instruments such as investments, shares, bonds, credit cards and pension funds are not acceptable.
To demonstrate your eligibility, you must provide one of the following as evidence of your maintenance:
- Personal bank statements (printed on the bank’s stationery or bearing the official stamp of the financial organisation);
- Saving account passbooks;
- Letters from your bank or a financial institution confirming funds.
What am I allowed to do?
Under the Youth Mobility Scheme, you are allowed to stay in the UK for a period of up to 24 months, during which you can:
- Study, as long as you get an Academic Technology Approval Scheme certificate;
- Seek employment and do a job on the Tier 2 shortage occupation list;
- Have a second job up to 20 hours per week;
- Do any work that complies with UK laws;
- Apply to switch your status into a Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa;
- Be self-employed and set up your own company if you meet specific conditions.
What can I not do?
While in the UK, Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme participants are not allowed to:
- Work as doctors, dentist in training, coaches and professional sportspersons, unless they can show they hold valid qualification;
- Take a permanent job;
- Extend their stay over the initial 24 months;
- Access public funds;
- Apply to settle in the UK;
- Including family members and dependents in their application.
Do I need a Tier 5 Certificate of Sponsorship?
You need to get a certificate of sponsorship from a licensed organisation before you can submit your Tier 5 application. Most importantly, your work or research in the UK must be related to the activities carried out by your sponsor.
The following bodies can issue a Certificate of Sponsorship for Youth Mobility Scheme applicants, provided that they hold a valid license:
- An organisation running an approved exchange scheme;
- A higher education institution;
- A government department or agency.
How long does the Tier 5 Visa application process take?
You can submit your application up to 6 months before the date you wish to enter the UK. It usually takes three weeks to get a decision from the Home Office.
You can get a response from the UKVI more quickly if you request a priority service. This will cost £500 and make you get your decision available within five working days.
Otherwise, you can pay an extra £800 for the super-priority service, to receive a verdict from the Home Office by the end of the next working day.
How long can I stay in the UK?
The Mobility Scheme allows you to remain in the UK for up to 24 months. During this time frame, you can leave and come back to the UK at any time.
If you turn 31 while in the United Kingdom, you can still stay until your visa expires. The Youth Mobility Scheme Visa cannot be extended under any circumstances.
Can I apply for a Tier 5 Visa from outside the UK?
If you are not in the UK, you can still apply online for your Tier 5 Visa. Nevertheless, three your biometrics (your fingerprints and a photograph) taken at a visa application centre.
Once your application is approved and you arrive in the UK, you will have ten days to collect your biometric residence permit.
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The Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme is a Government Authorised Exchange (GAE) scheme.
It is designed to allow international undergraduates and graduates to gain experience working in the UK, as well as to learn new skills that can be used to build their career in their home country. On the other hand, the scheme helps UK-based employers recruit the best talents from overseas.
It costs £244 to apply for the Scheme. As a part of your application, you also need to pay the healthcare surcharge and £19.20 to have your biometric information collected.
If you wish to bring your children with you in the country, you must pay an additional fee of £244 for each of your family members.
All UK employers can participate in the Scheme and hire interns from foreign countries, except for companies working in the following fields:
- Hospitality or care sector, unless they hold an A-rated Tier 2 Sponsor Licence;
- Agriculture sector. Businesses operating in agriculture and being in need of international interns should get in touch with the UK Border Agency.
Citizens of the Republic of Korea must get a certificate of sponsorship before they apply for a Tier 5 and enter the United Kingdom. This is a unique reference number with all the information about the job and your details. However, it is not a certificate nor a sticker on your passport.
Once you get your certificate, you need to apply for your visa within three months.