immigration passport stamp

If you asked the question about applying for a work permit for the UK, it's likely that you have done the first steps for your employment in the said country. You must have already figured out the most basic issues in relation to your employment. If not, you definitely need to know the crucial information we presented in this article for you to start assessing your chances of getting the job in the UK.

The thing is that you need to apply for a work permit only if you aren't:

  • A European Economic Area (EEA) citizen
  • A Swiss citizen

Now if you realized that you need to apply for a job permit, keep reading to figure out why you can't do it on your own. We've already found the answers for you.

Which requirements should be met before applying for a work permit?

“How can I apply for a work permit for the UK” is a great question but before everything else, we would advise you to ask yourself which requirements should be met before applying.

You might need to apply for a work permit if you already got the job offer from a licensed employer in the UK. If you do have a job offer already, take note that you cannot apply for your own work permit.

Your employer should apply for a work permit on your behalf. Before that, you need to know if he is a licensed employer who can hire you as a foreign employee. Not all of employers in the UK are eligible to do that.

You need to get the job offer with the sponsorship of your employer. This is a requirement for most of the working visas in the UK for non-EU citizens.

The type of visa varies depending on your specialty, citizenship, the duration of your employment in the UK, and other circumstances which we will discuss in the next part of this article.

Which type of visa do I need?

We'd recommend you to start by visiting the website This tool defines which type of visa do you need.

On the website, you will find all upcoming changes in immigration regulation with regards to Brexit. You can even sign up for the latest updates on the new immigration system via email from the official primary source.

We listed the main working visas down below based on the official information from the Government of the United Kingdom's website We presented the main information about the visas for work as they differ depending on the wide range of the circumstances of the applicant. If you want more information just click on the type of visa that you might be interested in and see the full information of requirements and instructions on the government website. This way you'll get complete and reliable information from primary sources from which we base our article.

After checking whether you need a visa and which type you need based on your personal information let's discuss the type of work visas.

Long-term work visas

Short-term work visas

The most common type of work visa you might need – General work visa (Tier 2) is actually the Skilled Worker visa. This is the type of visa assigned for skilled workers with knowledge of the language (B1 level), who received a confirmed job offer from a certified employer sponsor. Follow the link to know more about language requirements

Starting January 2021, the job you’re offered will need to be at a required skill level of RQF3 or above (equivalent to A level). The salary is supposed to be no less than £20,480 – £25,600.

You will find more information below on the fee involved in applying for a visa and the time that it takes to get it gone.

How much money it will take to get it done?

The fee varies depending on the work visa. Even the cost for the same type of visas may differ for similar candidates for one position from different countries. For example, the cost of Skilled Worker visa / General work visa (Tier 2) can vary from £55 if you are from an eligible country such as Portugal to £1,408.

The price also depends on whether you are applying from the UK or another country, as well as for how long you want to get a visa. If you apply for a visa for up to 3 years, it will cost less than a visa for more than 3 years. If your job is on the shortage job list you will pay less application fee than the application fee for a visa for the job that isn't on the list. When you apply you are informed of the exact amount of fee you need to pay.

Take note that you will also need to pay for a healthcare surcharge – this is usually £624 per year. When you are paying for a healthcare surcharge you pay for each year of your stay in the UK, which significantly increases the amount of money you need to pay right away when applying for a visa.

Besides that, you are supposed to prove that you have a sufficient amount of money to support yourself on the 1st month upon arrival. This amount can't be less than £1,270 and it must be no less than 3 months on your bank account before your arrival in the country. But if your employer can cover your expenses during your first month through a confirmed sponsorship certificate there's no need to provide evidence of your financial capacity.


Now you are aware of the process of the system in the UK. It would be highly recommended that you talk to your potential employer to be prepared for the expenses and other aspects involved. If you'd like to know more on the topic, read the guidance on financial evidence.

Photo Credit: kstudio –

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. By browsing this website, you agree to our use of cookies.

Sign in

Sign Up

Forgotten Password