Many people ask if it is possible to move to UK without a job offer or a sponsor. Yes, it very much possible. Some UK visa types allow you to move to the UK without any employment offer. But then, there are certain criteria you need to meet before you can get these types of visas. In this article, you will learn all about these types of visas that permit you to move to the UK without a job offer, their requirements and how to get them.
UK Visas that allow you to Move to the UK without a Job
If you wish to move to the UK without a job, make sure you have enough money to support yourself until you get a job. Here are some of the visa types or routes that permit you to move to the UK without a job or a sponsor:
- Global Talent Visa
- Youth Mobility Scheme Visa
- UK Right of Abode
- UK Partner and Spouse Visa
- UK Ancestry Visa
- Study Visas for Students
- Innovator Founder Visa
Now check out the overview and complete guide of each of these UK visa routes that allows you to immigrate to the UK and live there permanently without a job offer or a sponsor.
UK Global Talent Visa Scheme: Overview
The UK Global Talent Visa is a UK immigration work visa category for individuals with extraordinary talents and individuals who are leaders or potential leaders in one of the following fields:
- Academics or Research (Science, Engineering, Architecture, Humanities and Medicine)
- Arts and Culture
- Digital Technology
With this visa, you can work and live in the UK for up to 5 years. Actually, there is no limit to how long you can stay in the UK, but you will need to renew your visa when it expires after 5 years. Each visa renewal or extension can last up to 5 years.
Also, after the first 3 to 5 years, you can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), which is a form of UK permanent residence for those who wish to remain in the UK without any imposed restriction.
Before you apply for a Global talent visa, you need to have been successfully endorsed by an approved body, to prove that you are a leader or a potential leader. You don’t need to be sponsored by any UK employer.
Note that all applications are done online. How you apply depends on your location as at when you are applying for the visa. You can apply from outside UK. If you are already inside UK, you can apply for extending of your current Global Talent visa, or you switch from your current visa to a Global talent visa (if and only if you meet the visa requirements).
For more details about the eligibility requirements, required documents, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Global Talent Visa Scheme, check out this guide, All About the UK Global Talent Visa & How to Apply.
Youth Mobility Scheme Visa: Overview
Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme visa meant for young adults from participating countries and territories, who wish to visit the UK, live temporarily and work for not more than 2 years.
NOTE: Only citizens of the following countries and territories can apply for the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme visa: Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, Hong Kong, India, Iceland, San Marino, Republic of Korea and Taiwan, or British Overseas Citizens, British Overseas Territories citizen or a British national (overseas).
Every year, there are quotas on the number of places available on the Youth Mobility Scheme for the various participating countries. But there is no quota on the number of places for qualifying British Overseas citizens, British Overseas Territories citizens or British National (Overseas) citizens.
Note that this visa type is meant for young adults between the ages of 18 and 30, and is mostly meant for British aliens who are outside UK, except few qualifying British citizens from some specific areas as explained previously. So most of the applicants are applying from outside UK, and the application must be done online.
Also, during the application, you will be required to prove your identity. Depending on your nationality and the type of passport you have, there are 2 main options.
For more details about the eligibility requirements, required documents, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Youth Mobility Scheme Visa , check out this guide, All About the UK Youth Mobility Scheme Visa & How to Apply.
UK Right of Abode: Overview
Right of Abode is another criteria for permanently moving to the UK even without any job or employment offer. The term “Right of Abode” is unique to the UK, in recognition of Britain’s historical role at the heart of the Commonwealth and its colonial history. In some circumstances, it appears as a visa category. Right of Abode gives right to permanent residency in the UK for those who have a British parent (especially the father).
Right of Abode is usually in form of a stamp in your existing (non-British) passport with a “Certificate of Entitlement” sticker (it was formally called “Certificate of Patriality”), and it gives you the full right to live, work and study in the United Kingdom without any immigration restriction. This means that you live in the UK and enjoy full UK nationality benefits, just like a UK born British citizen. Also, you will not need a visa to come to the UK, and there is no limit on the length time of your stay in the UK.
This right of abode can never be revoked, and can never expire, even when your passport expires. Right of Abode can also be summarized as the “complete exemption from UK immigration control”. Note that a person with right of abode is still subject to checks to confirm that he or she genuinely has this right.
The following categories of people qualify for the Certificate of Entitlement to the Right of Abode:
- Commonwealth citizens, either by birth, adoption or registration.
- Legally adopted child (by a UK citizen by birth) before 1st January 1983.
- A woman who married a man (who is a UK citizen by birth and has the right of abode) prior to 1st January 1983.
- A child born before 1st January 1983 by a mother who is born in the UK, or born to a father who is a UK citizen by birth.
For more details about the qualifications and eligibility requirement, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Youth Mobility Scheme Visa , check out this guide, All about the UK Right of Abode (RoA) & How to Apply.
UK Partner and Spouse Visa Scheme: Overview
The UK spouse visa is another visa category that allows you to move to the UK without an employment or job offer (but your marriage partner living in the UK will be your sponsor). UK Spouse visa (also known as UK Marriage Visa or Partner and Spouse Visa) is one of the sub-categories of UK family visas. It is issued to non-citizens of the UK who are married to British citizens or settled persons (for example, a person with Indefinite Leave to Remain or EU Settled Status) in the UK, and wish to join their partner and remain in the UK for more than 6 months.
NOTE: If you wish to visit your partner living in the UK in order to get married and stay not more than 6 months in the UK with your partner, then you should apply for the UK Fiancé(e) visa.
You can apply for a UK partner and spouse visa if your UK-based partner meets any of the following criteria:
- Is a British citizen or Irish citizen, either by birth or by naturalization.
- Is settled in the UK and has permanent residence, Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), or EU Settled Status.
- Has a Turkish Worker visa or a Turkish Businessperson visa.
- Has humanitarian protection or refugee status in the UK.
On your own part as the UK Spouse visa applicant, you need to prove that your relationship with the UK-based partner is genuine and subsisting. Also, you must intend to live together with your partner in the UK when you eventually move there.
For your UK partner and spouse visa to be approved, you need to meet these strict eligibility requirements and also provide the following details:
- Proof that your Relationship is Genuine and Eligible
- A Proof of Financial Capability (a proof of a minimum gross annual income of £18,600 is required).
- Proof that you meet the English language requirements (at least level A1 is required for your first visa application.
- Proof of a Suitable Accommodation in the UK.
For more details about the eligibility requirements, required documents, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Partner and Spouse Visa Scheme, check out this guide, All about the UK Partner & Spouse Visa & How to Apply.
UK Ancestry Visa Scheme: Overview
The UK Ancestry visa route (also known as British Ancestor visa) is one of the easiest ways to move to the UK, to live and work there permanently. This UK visa route grants Commonwealth and British Overseas citizens and nationals whose grandparent(s) was born in the UK the right to live, study and work in the UK. This means that before you can get the UK Ancestry visa, you must be a Commonwealth citizen, and must also be an immediate descendant of UK nationals. With the UK Ancestry visa, you can live and work anywhere in the UK. You can also establish your own business (self-employment) in the UK.
The validity period of UK Ancestry visa is 5 years, after which you either apply to extend your visa for another 5 years, or you apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in order to get UK permanent residency permit.
In order to be eligible for UK Ancestry visa you must meet the following criteria:
- You must be 17 years old and above.
- You must be a Commonwealth citizen, British overseas citizen, British overseas territories citizen, a British national (overseas), or a citizen of Zimbabwe
- Also, you must apply from outside of UK.
- You must have enough evidence to prove that one of your grandparents was born in the UK, the Isle of Man, or the Channel Islands.
- You must be able to work, and also have plans to work in the UK.
- Finally, you must have enough funds to support yourself and your dependents (if any), without help from public funds.
NOTE: As an applicant of UK Ancestry visa, you must be able to prove that at least one of your grandparents was born on a British-registered aircraft or ship; or in the UK, including the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man; or before 31st March 1922 in what is now known as the Republic of Ireland.
For more details about the required documents, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Ancestry Visa Scheme, check out this guide, All about the UK Ancestry Visa & How to Apply.
UK Study Visas for Students: Overview
The UK study visas for students creates an avenue for students to move to the UK to further their education. You don’t need to secure an employment in order to be eligible for these visa types, but you might need a sponsor.
There are 3 main UK study visas for students you should know about:
- Student Route Visa: For adult students who are 18 years old and above. It replaced the Tier 4 (General) Student visa.
- Child Student Route Visa: For students between the ages of 4 and 17 years. It replaced the Tier 4 (Child) Student visa.
- Short-term Study visa for international students who wish to study English language in the UK for up to 11 months.
NOTE: You can apply for a Student UK visa whether you are a EU/EEA and non-EU/EEA national. But you must score up to 70 points in the UK immigration Point Based System.
Some of the requirements you must meet before you will be granted a UK study visa for students include:
- You must have been offered a course of study by a recognized institution in the UK. The UK institution will issue you a document known as Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) as a proof of acceptance.
- You must have the financial resources to fund your stay in the UK. Apart from the tuition fees for your course of study, you need £1,265 every month if you are studying in London, and £1,015 every month if you are studying outside London. If you have dependents (partner and/or child) as a student, then you need about £800 every month for each of your dependents.
- Also, you must take and pass an English language proficiency test from an approved provider. You must score a minimum of B2 if you are studying a degree-level course or above. For courses below degree level, you must score up to B1.
- For Student route, you must be up to 18 years old. If you are 16 or 17 years old, you must provide an evidence of your parent’s consent when applying for the visa.
For more details about the visa course requirements, required documents, visa costs and fees, and application guide for UK Study Visas for Students, check out this guide, All about the UK Study Visas for Students & How to Apply.
UK Innovator Founder Visa Scheme: Overview
The UK Innovator Founder Visa is for young entrepreneurs and business people, who wish to establish a business in the UK. In this new visa scheme, applicants do not need to have a specific level of investment funds for the proposed business. But the proposed business idea must be new, viable, innovative and scalable, with a suiting business plan, which must have been approved by an endorsing body. As an applicant or Innovator Founder, you must have significant contribution to the proposed business idea, and also have a key role in the day-to-day management and development of your business. In addition, approve Innovator Founders can take up other employment opportunities that require a skill level of not less than UK A levels. Aside managing their business, they can pursue academic studies in the UK.
NOTE: The UK government replaced the Innovator visa and Start-Up visa schemes with a new visa scheme – the Innovator Founder visa route. The new visa scheme commenced from 13 April 2023. The Innovator Founder visa program offers non-UK residents an avenue to immigrate to the UK and live permanently if they wish, without a job offer or sponsor.
With the Innovator Founder visa, you can stay in the UK for 3 years. Whether you came to the UK on an Innovator Founder visa or you switched to this visa from other visa categories while in the UK. Note that after every year (that after the first 12 months and 24 months), you must meet with your endorsing body for reassessment, to prove that you are making progress in the approved business. If the endorsement body withdraws your endorsement, you visa might be cut short. To stay longer (for another 3 years), you must reapply with a new endorsement before your current visa expires. There is no limit on the number of times you can extend this visa type. Also note that if you have lived in the UK for 3 years, you can apply directly for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK if you met the other requirements.
Also, the Innovator Founder visa holders can bring their partners and their children that are under 18 years old to the UK. The dependents (partners and children) of Innovator Founder visa holders are free to work in any field, except as sports coaches or player. They can also pursue their academic studies in the UK.
Note that all applications must be online. You can apply in any of these 3 ways:
- Apply outside the UK, and then come to the UK.
- Apply inside the UK, if you currently hold an Innovator Founder visa, and wish to extend your current visa.
- Apply inside the UK, if you are switching from a different visa type to the Innovator Founder visa.
NOTE: Your partner and children can also apply to join you or stay in the UK as your dependents if they are eligible.
For more details about the eligibility requirements, required documents, visa costs and fees, authorized endorsing bodies, and application guide for UK Innovator Founder Visa Scheme, check out this guide, All about the UK Innovator Founder Visa & How to Apply.
Video: How To Move To UK Without A Job Offer? | Different Categories To Migrate UK Without Sponsorship
You have learnt about the various visa schemes through which you can immigrate to the UK without a job or a sponsor. Feel free to check out the visa routes and chose the one you are eligible to apply. Note that with some of these UK visa routes like the Innovator Founder visa scheme and the Ancestry visa scheme, you can easily apply for UK Citizenship after you have got a permanent residence permit.
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