10 February 2009
UK lists countries no longer on 6-month visa-waiver list
After a review into global visa agreements, the UK Home Office has announced five new countries that will have to face visa checks before visiting the UK.
Nationals from Bolivia, Lesotho, South Africa, Swaziland and Venezuela will now have to have a UK visa application approved in order to gain access to the UK for visiting purposes, including transit.
The introduction of the new visa rules means that the UK immigration department felt that nationals from these countries might pose a threat to the security of Britain if they did not go through thorough security checks before their arrival.
Last year, the UK government insisted that eleven countries improve their passport and border controls or they would be subject to visa checks and of these, only five did not meet the standards set out by the government.
The visitor's visa will last for six months only, although those Venezuelan nationals who have a biometric passport issued post-2007 will be granted a visa-waiver for the six months. All nationals outside the EU still need a visa to work in the UK.
The UK Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in UK visa and immigration services.