Are you an Indian citizen who has a business interest in the UK? Do you want to visit the UK for activities such as attending meetings, conferences, training, trade fairs, or negotiating contracts? If yes, then you may need to apply for a UK business visa from India.
A business visa for the UK allows you to enter the UK for a short-term business trip, but not for work or study. How long a UK business visa from India is valid depends on the type of visa you choose.
Types of UK Business Visas from India
Here are the most common types of UK business visas from India that you may want to consider for your business trip:
- Standard Visitor Visa
The most common type of UK business visa from India is the Standard Visitor visa, which is valid for up to 6 months and costs £100 (approximately INR 10 260). You can apply for this visa online by filling out an application form, providing personal and travel details, and paying the fee. You will also need to submit supporting documents such as your passport, bank statements, invitation letter, and business plan.
- Tier 1 Innovator Visa
Another option for Indian entrepreneurs who want to set up or run an innovative business in the UK is the UK tier 1 innovator visa. This visa is valid for up to 3 years and can be extended for another 3 years. You will need to have at least £50,000 (approximately INR 51 30 000) to invest in your business and be endorsed by an approved organization. The fee for this visa is £1,021 (approximately INR 1 04 900).
- Investor Visa UK
A visa for high net-worth individuals who want to invest in the UK economy is the investor visa UK. This visa is valid for up to 3 years and 4 months and can be extended for another 2 years. You will need to have at least £2 million (approximately INR 20 52 00 000) to invest in UK government bonds, share capital, or loan capital in active UK companies. The fee for this visa is £1,623 (approximately INR 1 66 700).
How to Apply for a UK Business Visa from India
To apply for any of these visas, you will need to provide evidence of your funds, business idea, and endorsement (if applicable). You will also need to prove your identity by giving your biometrics (fingerprints and photographs) at a visa application center in India.
The processing time for a UK business visa from India varies depending on the type of visa and the demand. Generally, it takes around 15 working days for a Standard Visitor visa, 8 weeks for a Tier 1 Innovator visa, and 3 weeks for an Investor visa. You should apply well in advance of your intended travel date to avoid any delays or rejections.
UK business visas from India are valid from the date of issue, not from the date of entry. This means that you should plan your travel accordingly and not waste any time on your visa validity. You can check your visa expiry date on your visa sticker or letter. You must leave the UK before your visa expires or face penalties.