Britain is increasing fees for almost all categories of visa from March 18, including those related to tourism, students, premium service and settlement. The move will affect applications made in India and those by Indians in Britain.
Official sources said the new fees were intended to “ensure that the Home Office can achieve a self-funding system, whilst continuing to provide a competitive level of service, and a fees structure that remains attractive to businesses, migrants and visitors”.
Indians are among the largest applicants and recipients of British visas under various categories every year. Immigration minister James Brokenshire opened a new visa centre in Lucknow in February.
Among the biggest increases is a 25% rise in fees for applications for settlement, residence and nationality fees, because, the sources said, “these routes deliver the most benefits to successful applicants”.
Indian professionals and others on visas leading to settlement in Britain will also see a steep rise of £ 374 when applying for ‘indefinite leave to remain’: the fee will rise from £1500 to £1875.
For Indians with indefinite leave to remain and seeking to naturalise as British citizen, the fee will go up from £1005 to £1236.
A 33% increase from existing fees has been announced for optional premium services, such as the super premium service and priority visa services overseas.
After March 18, the intra-company transfer visa, which is most used by Indian IT companies posting employees in Britain, will be go up to £1151, while “visas linked most closely to economic growth, such as those offered to workers and students”, will rise by 2%.
Visit visas for tourism purpose will go up by 2%, the sources said.