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Graduate Immigration Route Visa in the UK - Your Path to Stay


A graduate route visa in the UK, sometimes known as a "Graduate Visa," allows international students to stay in the Kingdom for at least two years after successfully finishing their studies. Students on the Graduate Visa can hunt for work or be hired during their extended stay. This visa also applies to students who bring their partner and children, allowing them to reside and work in the UK. 

Did you know 'Graduate route visa' does not require any sponsorship or any endorsement by any employer or by your institution?

What is a Graduate Route visa in the UK?

A graduate route visa in the UK allows eligible graduates to stay and work, or look for work, in the UK. Undergraduate and postgraduate Masters graduates (or those with relevant qualifications) can stay for two years; PhD or doctoral qualification graduates can stay for three years.

Students transition from student visa status to work visa status from the day their university acknowledges satisfactory course completion until the expiration of their present student authorisation.

It is important to note that as long as students apply during this period, your immigration permit as a student is automatically extended until you receive the outcome of your graduate route application, even if the initial expiration date of your student permission has passed. This is a general premise of UK immigration law called 3C leave.

Pro Tip:The earliest date you can successfully apply under the Graduate route is when your sponsor institution acknowledges that you have passed your course and received your results. You would be surprised to know that most students find work opportunities after their course finishes in the UK.

What Are the Eligibility Criteria for a Graduate Route Visa in the Uk?

Eligibility criteria for a graduate route visa in the UK are as following:

  • You're in the UK.
  • Your current visa is a Tier 4 (General) student visa.
  • You studied a UK bachelor's degree, postgraduate degree, or other suitable course for a minimum period of time on your student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa.
  • Your education provider (such as your university or college) has informed the Home Office that you have satisfactorily completed your course.

How to Apply for a Graduate Route Visa to the UK?

  1. All students wanting to apply for a graduate route visa to the UK should apply online here.
  2. The application fee for UK graduate route visa is GBP 822 and students additionally need to pay the health-surcharge of GBP 1,035 for each year they will be in the UK. 

Step-by-step guide on how to apply for graduate route visa in the UK:

  1. Apply Online
  2. Provide all the documents required
  3. Sign the document
  4. Wait for the decision

Document Checklist for Graduate Route visa UK

  • A valid passport or other travel document that shows your identity and nationality
  • Your biometric residence permit (BRP), if you were given one when you applied for your UK Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa
  • Your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) reference number from when you applied for your Student visa or Tier 4 (General) student visa

Pro Tip:Your education provider issued you your CAS reference number when they offered you a spot on the course you completed using your Student visa. If you can't find it, ask your education provider.

Other documents you might need:

  • Depending on your circumstances, you may be required to provide:
  • To apply, please submit proof of your relationship with your partner or children, as well as a letter from your scholarship or sponsorship source endorsing your application if they have paid for your study fees and living costs within the last 12 months.

What is the Duration of the Graduate Route Visa in the UK?

  • A graduate route visa in the UK is valid for two years. If you have a PhD or other doctorate certification, it will be valid for three years.
  • Your visa will begin the day your application is approved.
  • If you want to stay longer in the United Kingdom after your duration gets over. However, you may be able to switch to a different visa in order to extend your stay in the UK.

The United Kingdom requires qualified professionals to join the workforce. As a result, extending your student visa to locate the suitable job opportunity and converting a Graduate Visa into a permanent work visa are ideal options for Indonesian students studying in the UK. Indonesian students should ensure that all of their documentation and timelines comply with the Graduate Route Visa standards, enabling for a smooth transfer from a student visa to a work visa in the United Kingdom.

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