If you want to invite a relative or friend to come and visit you in the UK, and they need a visa, they will need to apply for a Standard Visitor visa at their nearest Visa Application Centre (VAC). There is information about how to apply on the gov.uk website.
Your visitor must show the VAC some documents. You can find a list of required documents online.
In addition, it is usually helpful for your visitor to provide:
• proof of your enrolment at QM or your graduation ceremony (see below)
• an letter of invitation from you (see below)
Students sometimes ask us in Advice and Counselling for an additional formal letter of invitation for their visitor, but this is not necessary. The VAC in Beijing has confirmed to us as follows:
“There is no requirement [to the University] to provide anything [more] than a letter confirming that a particular student is studying at your University [or that they have] been invited to a graduation ceremony. The other documents should be provided separately by the applicant.” Duo Duo Chai, British Embassy Beijing, Visa Section
Advice and Counselling Service staff can sometimes write an invitation letter on your behalf, but only if you can show us in a letter or email that the Embassy have asked for more information from the university than just proof of your enrolment.
Proof of your attendance at QM
If you are a current student you can send your family a certificate of attendance letter. You can request this from the Student Enquiry Centre (Ground floor of the Queens Building, Mile End) or from the Student Office (Garrod Building, Whitechapel campus) if you are a medical or dental student. You can either request a letter in person or by email. Do not use an old certificate of attendance letter: if you already have one, but it is more than a few weeks old, you should apply for a new one.
Proof of your Graduation Ceremony
If you are inviting your family or friends to attend your graduation ceremony, you can request a letter which confirms your graduation date throughthis web form (This form is only available once the bookings for graduation are open.) If this request process has closed, please request proof of your graduation ceremony by asking for a proof of attendance letter as outlined in the section above. You will need to ask for the graduation ceremony dates to be added to the letter, before you request it.
Your letter of invitation
Write a letter, addressed to the Entry Clearance Officer at the VAC where your visitor is applying for their visa. Include in your letter:
• the full name and date of birth of the proposed visitor(s)
• their relationship to you (parent, friend, etc)
• why they want to come and visit you (for a holiday, to attend your graduation, etc.)
• how long they want to stay in the UK and, if possible, their proposed arrival and departure dates
• where they intend to stay; if they plan to stay with you, give your full address
• your own immigration status in the UK (for example, Tier 4 (General) Student until October 2016)
What to do next
Send your invitation letter and certificate of attendance, or graduation ceremony letter, to your friend or relative so they can include them with their visa application. Do not send it direct to the VAC.
Again, you do not normally need any additional letter from QM, only proof of your attendance or of your graduation ceremony.
More information and online application form
- Standard Visitor visa information at gov.uk
- The Home Office have published guidance for sponsors and a form for you to complete if you will be taking responsibility for your visitor’s maintenance, accommodation and care in the UK.