Visas: United Kingdom

There are a number of different types of working visas available for the United Kingdom, more information can be found here. Here's some more information on the most popular types of visas for Australians.


The entrepreneur visa: for those looking to set up, join or run your own business.

Non-European applicants are graded on a points-based system, with a successful application dependent on a minimum score of 95 points. Points are awarded for the ability to pass an approved English language test as well as the means to maintain a reasonable standard of living. 

All business proposals for the UK need to be seen as viable. The Home Office will take the following into account:

  • Relevant market research
  • The financial viability of the submitted business plan
  • The background of the applicant concerned

Holders of this visa may stay in the UK for a maximum of three years and four months. After this, you may extend your visa for a further two years or three, if you are transferring to another visa category.

If you remain in the UK for five years you will be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).


The employer-sponsored visa: available to skilled applicants who have the sponsorship of a UK employer.

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will apply the points-based system to determine whether you’re a suitable applicant.

To be eligible for this visa, you need to have an offer of skilled employment from a licensed sponsoring employer within the UK. You will also need to prove your qualifications and experience, as related to the role on offer.

There are three main steps involved in lodging an application for a Tier 2 visa.

  • Step 1: Sponsorship license
    • The first stage is undertaken by the employer who applies directly for a sponsorship.
  • Step 2: Certificate of sponsorship
    • The employer then applies for a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) for the position they would like a non-resident worker to fill. Once a CoS is assigned, you may apply for your visa.
  • Step 3: Apply
    • Apply for a visa with your unique CoS number and proof that you meet the Tier 2 requirements.


The Youth Mobility Scheme: This visa lets the holder work and travel throughout the UK for two years.

This visa lets the holder work and travel throughout the UK for two years.

To qualify for a Tier 5 visa, you must:

  • intend to be in the UK for anything up to two years
  • want to work and travel during your stay
  • have citizenship from an eligible country
  • not be responsible for any dependents
  • not have held a Tier 5 or working holiday maker visa before
  • be between 18 and 30 years of age
  • have £1,890 (Roughly AU $4,000 to $5,000 depending on the exchange rate) in savings.

This is intended as a guide only. To find the most up to date information, you will need to check in with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade before applying for a visa. Advance always recommends reaching out to a qualified immigration attorney for legal advice about your specific situation.