UK Priority Visa, Premium Service- How to Fast Track UK Visa?

This relates to Fast Tracking UK Visa and explains all the available priority and premium services from outside and inside the UK to expedite the UK Visa Processing Time and covers the following topics:

  • Priority, Premium and Super-Premium Visa Service from Inside the UK
    • Priority Visa Processing Service 10 Days
    • Premium or Same Day Processing Service
    • Super Premium Service 24 Hours
    • Who Can’t Use Premium or Super-Premium Service
  • UK Priority and Super-Priority Visa Service from Outside the UK
    • Priority Non-Settlement Visa Processing Time 5 Days
    • Priority Settlement Processing Time 30 Days
    • Super-Priority Visa Service 24 Hours
  • Service Delays: When Not to Use Priority or Premium Service

Please note: these services are not available for all types of visa applications and an applicant is required to pay the standard application fee and the applicable immigration health surcharge. Moreover, these are meant for processing a straightforward application and not for influencing the decision

Priority and Premium Visa Service from Inside the UK

UK Priority Visa, Premium Service- How to Fast Track UK Visa?

From inside the UK, there are three services for expediting/fast-tracking the UK Visa Processing viz. Priority Service, Premium Service Centres and Super Premium Service.

Priority Visa Processing Service 10 Days

The price of Priority service from inside the UK is £459 and the service standard is to process a straightforward application within 10 working days. It is available for applicants applying to remain on a temporary basis including as, Tier 1 General and Entrepreneurs, Spouses, Workers, Organisations seeking to Sponsor a Worker, and Students.

Premium or Same Day Processing Service

Premium or same day visa processing facility is available at Premium Service Centres for a fee of £590. This service can be used for extension applications (‘limited leave to remain’) and permanent settlement applications (ILR).

Super Premium Service 24 Hours

For applicants, who can afford, there is a Super Premium Service, which is a mobile service and costs £10,500 per visit, plus the premium service fee.

It is an extension of Premium Service and is a mobile service i.e. a courier collects application forms and documents and for biometrics information staff of the premium service centre visits the applicant. An applicant chooses the location and time of the visit (b/w midday and 3:00 PM, Mon-Fri). The application is usually decided within 24 hours.

Who Can’t Use Premium or Super-Premium Service

According to UKVI, the following types of applicants are ineligible for the use of premium or super-premium service:

You can’t use the premium service if you’re applying under Tier 1 (Investor).

You can’t use the premium or super premium service if you’re:

  • a business person, innovator, sole representative or investor
  • a Turkish business person
  • a self-employed lawyer
  • applying under Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur)
  • applying under Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)
  • applying for Stage 1 endorsement under Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent)
  • a seaman
  • a Gurkha
  • a retired person of independent means
  • an elderly dependant
  • still in the armed forces and exempt from immigration rules and requirements
  • a member of a diplomatic mission or one of their dependants
  • someone whose case is complex because of personal circumstances
  • someone whose case isn’t covered by the Immigration Rules
  • sponsored by a member of staff at a premium service centre
  • applying for a Home Office travel document
  • applying for naturalisation or registration as a UK national
  • applying as a victim of domestic violence
  • applying for an European Economic Area (EEA) residence card or permanent residence card
  • applying for an EEA registration certificate as an unmarried partner
  • applying for an EEA registration certificate and you’re not a qualified person
    applying for proof of a right of abode

You also can’t use the premium or super premium service if you’re applying for discretionary leave to remain or humanitarian protection unless:

  • you’re applying under the transitional arrangements to extend your discretionary leave after 3 years
  • you’re applying to settle in the UK after 6 years discretionary leave

via Visa Premium Service Centres

UK Priority Visa Service from Outside the UK

The UK Priority Service from outside the UK is available for settlement as well as non-settlement visa applications such as visit, work and study from most of the UK Visa Applications Centres (UKVACs). Moreover, at a few UKVACs, Super Priority Visa Service is also available.

Priority Non-Settlement Visa Processing Time 5 Days

The cost of non-settlement priority service is £184 with a service standard of processing applications within 5 working days. Therefore, instead of 15-30 days (or 3-6 weeks) waiting time for the Standard Visa Service, an applicant is quite likely to get a decision within a week’s time by using the priority service.

If an applicant can afford and he/she intends to get the decision as soon as possible then priority service is recommended. Contrarily, if an applicant thinks that by using a priority service he/she will get the visa then the applicant is mistaken as priority service is not meant for influencing the decision.

Information available at UK Family, Business, Tourist and Long Term Visit Visa Processing Times indicates that apart from a few exceptions at an average approx. 40-60% of the visitor visa applications are decided within 5 working days.     

UKVI’s Service Standard- Customers applying for a visa from outside the UK

90% of non-settlement applications within 3 weeks, 98% within 6 weeks and 100% within 12 weeks of the application date (where 1 week is 5 working days)

Priority Settlement Processing Time 30 Days

The settlement visas from outside the UK takes 12-24 weeks (60-120 working days), therefore, at times it is quite wise to use the Settlement Priority Service, which cost £551 per application but the service standard time is 30 days or 6 weeks. Information available at UK Settlement Visa Processing Time indicates that 25-50% settlement applications are decided within 30 days, which indicates the ever-increasing use of the priority settlement visa service.

UKVI’s Service Standard- Customers applying for Settlement from outside the UK.

95% of settlement applications within 12 weeks of the application date and 100% within 24 weeks of the application date (where 1 week is 5 working days)

Super-Priority Visa Service 24 Hours

The Super-priority visa service is the same day service and costs £919. The service is not available in most of the countries and it is also not available for settlement visa application processing. For instance, in India, it is available at UKVAC New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai for visitor visas, Tier 2 and Tier 5 visa applications.

Delays in Priority Visa Processing Time

Although, using a priority or premium service only expedites/fast-track the UK Visa Processing Time for straightforward and well-documented cases and do not have any influence on the outcome. Therefore, these services are only used when an Applicant’s focus is to get the decision as quickly as possible and not otherwise i.e. use of these services will increase the balance of probability of granting a visa.

Accordingly, if the case is not straightforward/well-documented then delays in the processing time are inevitable and as such these services are not recommended in circumstances where an applicant:

  1. has either been refused a visa (for UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the USA, or the Schengen countries) or leave to enter the UK and/or;
  2. has either overstayed or been deported, removed, or otherwise required to leave the UK, and/or;
  3. leave to remain in the UK was curtailed by the Home Office, and/or;
  4. refused leave to remain in the UK by the Home Office, and/or;
  5. was interviewed, detained, or prosecuted by the police for any offence in the United Kingdom or elsewhere, and/or;
  6. has an unspent criminal conviction in any country, and/or;
  7. has committed a criminal offence in any country.

Consequently, if the applicant is not straightforward/well-documented then, in spite of paying the service charges for a priority or premium service, the UK Visa Processing Time is expected to experience delays beyond the stated service standards.

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