UK Immigration Health Surcharge will increase to £400 a year from December 2018

On 11 October 2018, the UK Home Office laid an order before Parliament seeking to double the NHS immigration health surcharge paid by temporary migrants to the UK (this includes working holiday travellers on the Youth Mobility Visa and UK Ancestry Visa schemes).

The surcharge is set to rise from £200 to £400 per year. The discounted rate for students and those on the Youth Mobility Scheme will increase from £150 to £300. The increase is set to come into effect in December 2018 subject to Parliamentary approval.

The annual charge is paid by people from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) who are seeking to live in the UK for 6 months or more to work, study or join family. It is not an optional surcharge, and is paid by all visa applicants, at the time of application, in order to complete the lodgement of your application with the UKVI.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) estimates that the NHS spends £470 on average per person per year on treating surcharge payers. Projections suggest that the increased charges may provide around £220m extra every year, with this money going to NHS services.

Current Amounts for NHS Immigration Health Surcharge

  • £150 per year for a student or Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa, eg £300 for a 2-year visa
  • £200 per year for all other visa and immigration applications, eg £1,000 for a 5-year visa such as the UK Ancestry Visa
  • Dependants usually need to pay the same amount as the main applicants.

New Amounts for NHS Immigration Health Surcharge as of December 2018 (subject to parliamentary approval)

  • £150 per year for a student or Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa, eg £300 for a 2-year visa
  • £200 per year for all other visa and immigration applications, eg £1,000 for a 5-year visa such as the UK Ancestry Visa
  • Dependants usually need to pay the same amount as the main applicants.

For more details about the IHS, calculator and refunds please visit the Home Office’s page: https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/how-much-pay

What does this mean for me?

If you’re a UK Pub Co. traveller who has yet to arrive in the UK – or just a traveller in general, who is looking to travel to the UK sooner than later – you might be wondering what this means for you.

In short, the cost of your visa is about to get more expensive.

Now, this isn’t all bad news. The healthcare surcharge covers your NHS services for the full duration of your trip. Having access to the NHS healthcare system is a great benefit while you are overseas, and will ensure your healthcare needs are met while you’re away (your parents are sure to appreciate this). Though, it is worth noting that this surcharge does not cover you during any trips you take outside of the UK, so you need to ensure you purchase adequate travel cover for any trips/vacations you may take outside of the UK during your working holiday.

The other slice of good news is that, even if this IHS increase passes in parliament, there is one way to avoid it.

If you plan to arrive in the UK in the next 6 months… APPLY FOR YOUR VISA NOW!

You can apply for the Youth Mobility Visa up to 6 months in advance of your planned arrival date in the UK. With this in mind, you can apply for the visa before the end of November, but select the appropriate start date in 2019 in accordance with your trip (and within the 6 month window). This will ensure that you get started on your visa application well in advance, and as long as it is lodged before the increase comes into effect, you will pay the IHS fees as they are currently set (£150 per year for the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa).

Need some help with your application? Check out Restless World!

If you’re ready to tackle your application now, but aren’t sure where to start, let us introduce you to Restless World. They are our official visa processing partner, assisting thousands of working holiday travellers with their visa applications each and every year. They know the process inside and out, and will guide you through to ensure no mistakes are made so you can feel confident your visa will be approved quickly, the first time!

They also have a no visa = no fee guarantee, meaning, if they make a mistake on your application that causes refusal – they’ll pay for your re-application or refund you service fee in full.

For a limited time, Restless World are even offering 10% off their Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa & UK Ancestry Visa services to all UK Pub Co. friends and fans. Just visit their site using this link: https://www.restlessworld.com.au/discount/UKPC – or use the promo code UKPC during check out (offer only valid until November 30th at 11:59pm AEST)!

 

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