Coronavirus: latest information

Please see the below information about current UKVI concession announcements

The UKVI are keen to support anybody in the UK, who is genuinely affected by COVID-19, and is subsequently at risk of breaching immigration conditions through no fault of their own.

In order to prevent people from becoming overstayers they have brought in some temporary concessions. Please read the options below carefully and take action as advised.

If you are outside the UK.

These concessions do not cover you. 

Do not come back to the UK without first checking academic situation on the Swansea University Coronavirus web pages. You should not expect to come back to the UK if there is no academic reason for you to do so (for example, your course, exams or resits are to be delivered wholly online). The University cannot issue CAS for courses that have no UK based engagement- so make sure you are checking where your course will be delivered.

If you are continuing, or starting a new course, with UK based teaching and you do not have sufficient time on your current visa to complete the course, you should apply for a fresh visa to come back to the UK from your home country to avoid any issues. Full and comprehensive guidance can be found on the Making a Tier 4 visa from overseas page.

If you are inside the UK 

Scenario 1

Your visa expiry date is between 24th January and 31st July 2020 and you are unable to travel home due to travel restrictions, self isolation or illness.

In this situation you must inform the UKVI. They will consider granting an extension of your visa until 31st July 2020. This will hopefully be enough time to allow you to get home- any lengthening of concession would be listed here.

This extension is free but in order to get it you will need to email the UKVI and explain your situation. If granted, you will receive an email notification but your BRP visa card will not be updated and so you must keep the UKVI notification safe.

The UKVI guidance on accessing an extension states:

You must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) to update your records if your visa is expiring (on or before 31st July 2020). 

The link takes you to an online form that you need to complete.

You will need to provide:

  • Home office reference number (you could use the BRP number- found on the top right on the front of your BRP card)
  • VAF number (usually found on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • First and last names 
  • GWF reference number (just write 'not applicable' in this box)
  • Your email address
  • Date of birth (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Passport number
  • Type of visa (e.g. Tier 4 or Short Term Student Visa)
  • Daytime phone number
  • Place your visa was granted (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa start date (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa end date (this is usually on your BRP)
  • Reason why you can’t go back to your home country, for example if the border has closed
  • Date you arrived in the UK- as stamped in your passport (you should have a stamp but if you do not because you genuinely were not stamped at the airport or you have changed your passport since then, you can write 'not known' in the box)
  • Nationality

Please ensure that you are doing this as quickly as possible.

You may wish to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, for your own records. 

If your email address is entered correctly, soon after submitting the form you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Once that is done you do not need to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline or mailbox and the UKVI will try to respond to you within 5 days. 

Please note that this is a Home Office process and the University cannot make the decision process go any quicker or apply/intervene on your behalf.

Scenario 2

You are on a Short Term Student Visa and your course has either finished or is due to finish between now and 31st July 2020.

In this situation you should apply for a free visa extension until 31st July 2020 to allow you additional time in which to return home.

The UKVI guidance on accessing an extension states:

You must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) to update your records if your visa is expiring (on or before 31st July 2020). 

The link takes you to an online form that you need to complete.

You will need to provide:

  • Home office reference number (you could use the BRP number- found on the top right on the front of your BRP card)
  • VAF number (usually found on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • First and last names 
  • GWF reference number (just write 'not applicable' in this box)
  • Your email address
  • Date of birth (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Passport number
  • Type of visa (e.g. Tier 4 or Short Term Student Visa)
  • Daytime phone number
  • Place your visa was granted (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa start date (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa end date (this is usually on your BRP)
  • Reason why you can’t go back to your home country, for example if the border has closed
  • Date you arrived in the UK- as stamped in your passport (you should have a stamp but if you do not because you genuinely were not stamped at the airport or you have changed your passport since then, you can write 'not known' in the box)
  • Nationality

Please ensure that you are doing this as quickly as possible.

You may wish to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, for your own records. 

If your email address is entered correctly, soon after submitting the form you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Once that is done you do not need to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline or mailbox and the UKVI will try to respond to you within 5 days. 

Please note that this is a Home Office process and the University cannot make the decision process go any quicker or apply/intervene on your behalf.

If you were hoping to start another course within the next 3 months, you will need to talk to an International Student Adviser about your situation. Please see their contact details page on how to access their help.

If you are hoping to start a course in more than 3 months time, you should make the application for the free visa extension above and then reassess your situation in late July.

We have comprehensive information regarding Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK which you should read and prepare. This will ensure that you know exactly what documents and finances you need and are ‘ready to go’ with an application should you need to make one.

Scenario 3

Your visa expiry date is before 31st July 2020 and you need to apply for further leave in order to complete your current course or to switch into another visa category (e.g. from Tier 4 to the Doctorate Extension Scheme-DES).

In this situation you should be applying for a visa extension as normal before your current visa expires. Please see our information regarding Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK or Doctorate Extension Scheme (DES). This will ensure that you know exactly what documents you need and the finances regarding each category.

Although not offering face to face advice, the International @CampusLife team are still here to support your in UK visa applications. Please see their contact details page on how to access their help.

Scenario 4

Your visa expiry date is before 31st July 2020, you would like to apply for a new visa in order to begin a new course that starts within the next 3 months and you have successfully completed your latest course.

In this situation you may be able to make a visa application before your visa expires- though it depends on your individual situation and whether the course your are studying needs you to be in the UK or will be delivered wholly online. You need to seek advice from an International Student Adviser. Although not offering face to face advice, the International @CampusLife team are still here to support your in UK visa applications. Please see their contact details page on how to access their help.

Please see our information regarding Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK. This will ensure that, should you need to make an application, you know exactly what documents and funds you will need.

Scenario 5

Your visa expiry date is before 31st July 2020, you would like to apply for a new visa in order to begin a new course that starts within the next 3 months and you did not/have not completed your latest course.

The advice is this situation dependant on whether or not you pass the course for which your current visa was issued. If your results are not due until after your visa expires you should apply for the free extension to your visa as soon as possible.

The UKVI guidance on accessing an extension states:

You must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) to update your records if your visa is expiring (on or before 31st July 2020). 

The link takes you to an online form that you need to complete.

You will need to provide:

  • Home office reference number (you could use the BRP number- found on the top right on the front of your BRP card)
  • VAF number (usually found on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • First and last names 
  • GWF reference number (just write 'not applicable' in this box)
  • Your email address
  • Date of birth (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Passport number
  • Type of visa (e.g. Tier 4 or Short Term Student Visa)
  • Daytime phone number
  • Place your visa was granted (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa start date (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa end date (this is usually on your BRP)
  • Reason why you can’t go back to your home country, for example if the border has closed
  • Date you arrived in the UK- as stamped in your passport (you should have a stamp but if you do not because you genuinely were not stamped at the airport or you have changed your passport since then, you can write 'not known' in the box)
  • Nationality

Please ensure that you are doing this as quickly as possible.

You may wish to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, for your own records. 

If your email address is entered correctly, soon after submitting the form you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Once that is done you do not need to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline or mailbox and the UKVI will try to respond to you within 5 days. 

Please note that this is a Home Office process and the University cannot make the decision process go any quicker or apply/intervene on your behalf.

If you pass your course you may be able to make a visa application before your visa expires- though it depends on your individual situation and whether the course your are studying needs you to be in the UK or will be delivered wholly online. You need to seek advice from an International Student Adviser. Although not offering face to face advice, the International @CampusLife team are still here to support your in UK visa applications. Please see their contact details page on how to access their help.

Please see our information regarding Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK. This will ensure that, should you need to make an application, you know exactly what documents and funds you will need.

If you do not, or have not, passed your current course you may be able to apply for a new visa in the UK but you need specialist advice from an International Student Adviser. Please see their contact details page on how to access their help

Scenario 6

Your visa expiry date is before 31st July 2020, you would like to apply for a new visa in order to start a new course more than 3 months in the future but you haven't finished your current course yet.

In this situation you should apply for the free extension of your visa until 31st July 2020 and then reassess the situation closer to that date.

The UKVI guidance on accessing an extension states:

You must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) to update your records if your visa is expiring (on or before 31st July 2020). 

The link takes you to an online form that you need to complete.

You will need to provide:

  • Home office reference number (you could use the BRP number- found on the top right on the front of your BRP card)
  • VAF number (usually found on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • First and last names 
  • GWF reference number (just write 'not applicable' in this box)
  • Your email address
  • Date of birth (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Passport number
  • Type of visa (e.g. Tier 4 or Short Term Student Visa)
  • Daytime phone number
  • Place your visa was granted (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa start date (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa end date (this is usually on your BRP)
  • Reason why you can’t go back to your home country, for example if the border has closed
  • Date you arrived in the UK- as stamped in your passport (you should have a stamp but if you do not because you genuinely were not stamped at the airport or you have changed your passport since then, you can write 'not known' in the box)
  • Nationality

Please ensure that you are doing this as quickly as possible.

You may wish to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, for your own records. 

If your email address is entered correctly, soon after submitting the form you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Once that is done you do not need to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline or mailbox and the UKVI will try to respond to you within 5 days. 

Please note that this is a Home Office process and the University cannot make the decision process go any quicker or apply/intervene on your behalf.

Scenario 7

Your visa expiry date is before 31st July 2020, you would like to apply for a new visa in order to start a new course more than 3 months in the future and you have completed your latest course.

In this situation you should apply for the free extension of your visa until 31st July 2020 and then reassess the situation closer to that date.

You may be able to make an application for a visa for your new course in the UK later in the year- though this will depend on whether the UKVI issues further concessions. We cannot advise you further about this situation now as we need to wait until the UKVI releases any further guidance. We will update the information here if and when they do.

The UKVI guidance on accessing an extension states:

You must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) to update your records if your visa is expiring (on or before 31st July 2020). 

The link takes you to an online form that you need to complete.

You will need to provide:

  • Home office reference number (you could use the BRP number- found on the top right on the front of your BRP card)
  • VAF number (usually found on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • First and last names 
  • GWF reference number (just write 'not applicable' in this box)
  • Your email address
  • Date of birth (dd/mm/yyyy)
  • Passport number
  • Type of visa (e.g. Tier 4 or Short Term Student Visa)
  • Daytime phone number
  • Place your visa was granted (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa start date (this might be on your paper 30 day visa vignette in your passport)
  • Visa end date (this is usually on your BRP)
  • Reason why you can’t go back to your home country, for example if the border has closed
  • Date you arrived in the UK- as stamped in your passport (you should have a stamp but if you do not because you genuinely were not stamped at the airport or you have changed your passport since then, you can write 'not known' in the box)
  • Nationality

Please ensure that you are doing this as quickly as possible.

You may wish to take a screenshot of the completed form before submitting it, for your own records. 

If your email address is entered correctly, soon after submitting the form you’ll receive an email asking you to confirm your email address. Once that is done you do not need to contact the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline or mailbox and the UKVI will try to respond to you within 5 days. 

Please note that this is a Home Office process and the University cannot make the decision process go any quicker or apply/intervene on your behalf.

Scenario 8

Your visa expiry date is after 31st July 2020.

In this situation you need to wait and see what you need to do based on the situation post 31st July 2020.

However, if your visa is expiring in August/September 2020, and you believe you will need to make a visa application to complete or start a course, we advise that you see our comprehensive information Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK. You should read this and prepare any documents/funds necessary. This will ensure that you know exactly what documents and finances you need and are ‘ready to go’ with an application should you need to make one.

Additional scenarios

We believe that our students should fall into one of the categories above. However, f you have read all the scenarios carefully and you cannot see your own situation please contact the International @CampusLife Team through one of the methods outlined on their contact page. The team are incredibly busy at this time supporting students and so appreciate you working with them to ensure you are only contacting them with questions relevant to this period in time and not next academic year.

The team cannot answer questions based on what will happen with further concessions after 31st July 2020 as these decisions are for the UK government. Please rest assured that they will update these pages as and when necessary to help you. They will not be able answer multiple ‘what if’ questions so please ensure that you know your exact academic and other circumstances before contacting the team and outline this clearly. This will mean we can help you as accurately as possible and reduce the amount of back and fore trying to get information from you.

We really appreciate your help and support during this time.