Apply for a UK Marriage Visitor Visa: step by step

Apply for a UK Marriage Visitor Visa

You must apply for a UK Marriage Visitor visa if:

  • you want to get married or register a civil partnership in the UK
  • you want to give notice of a marriage or civil partnership in the UK
  • you’re not planning to stay or settle in the UK after your marriage or civil partnership
  • you meet the other eligibility requirements

You do not need a UK Marriage Visitor visa to convert your civil partnership into a marriage – you can apply for a standard Visitor visa.

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You also do not need a Marriage Visitor visa if one of the following is true:

  • you have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • you have applied to the EU Settlement Scheme, and have not got a decision yet
  • you’re an Irish citizen

You cannot apply if you qualify for British citizenship – including if you can have dual nationality. You must apply for British citizenship instead.

What you can and cannot do

You can:

  • marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of your arrival – you must use a venue licensed for this purpose
  • pass through the UK in transit (on your way to another country)

You cannot:

  • get public funds (benefits)
  • bring in family members (‘dependants’) – they must apply separately
  • live in the UK for extended periods through frequent visits
  • extend your visa or switch to another visa
  • work – except for permitted activities related to your work or business overseas, such as attending meetings
  • study

How long you can stay

You can use this visa to visit the UK for up to 6 months.

When to apply and how long it takes

If you need a visa, you must apply online before you come to the UK.

As part of your application, you’ll need to book an appointment at a visa application centre to prove your identity and provide your documents.

Allow time to attend your appointment, as the visa application centre could be in another country.

The visa application centre may keep your passport and documents while processing your application.

The earliest you can apply is 3 months before you travel.

Getting a decision

Once you’ve applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

Fees

  • It costs £100 to apply.

Eligibility

You must prove that:

  • you’re 18 or over
  • you’re free to give notice of marriage, to marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of your arrival
  • you’re in a genuine relationship
  • you’re visiting the UK for less than 6 months
  • you’ll leave the UK at the end of your visit
  • you’ll not live in the UK for extended periods through frequent or successive visits, or make the UK your main home
  • you’re able to support yourself during your trip (or have funding from someone else to support you)
  • you’re able to pay for your return or onward journey (or have funding from someone else to pay for the journey)
  • you have proof of any other activities you want to do in the UK, as allowed by the Visitor Rules

Documents you’ll need

You must provide a passport or travel document. Your passport should be valid for the whole of your stay in the UK and contain a blank page for your visa.

You can supply the following to support your application:

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  • details of the marriage or civil partnership and proof that you’ve paid money for some of its costs
  • proof that you’re planning to get married in the UK, for example, booking confirmation or emails between you and the venue

You’ll need to provide a certified translation of any documents that are not in English or Welsh.

If you’ve been married before

You’ll need to show proof that you’re free to marry or enter into a civil partnership again, for example, a:

  • decree absolute
  • death certificate of a previous partner

You may need to provide additional documents depending on your circumstances.

UK Marriage Visitor visa

Apply from outside the UK
If you need a visa, you must apply online before you travel to the UK.

Proving your identity and providing supporting documents

As part of your online application, you need to book an appointment at a visa application centre. You’ll have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information) taken at your appointment.

Allow time to attend your appointment, as the visa application centre could be in another country.

The visa application centre may keep your passport and documents while processing your application.

Apply for a UK Marriage Visitor visa

Once you’ve started your application you can save your form and complete it later.

Continue your application

You can sign back into your application if you’ve saved it. Check your email and follow the link to return to your application.

Apply with family members

Your partner must apply for their own United Kingdom marriage visitor visa and pay the fee if you both need one. Your child will need to apply as a standard visitor if they need a visa.

You can apply on behalf of your partner and child if they cannot apply for themselves.

They must attend their own appointment at a visa application centre.

How long it takes to get a decision

Once you’ve applied online, proved your identity and provided your documents, you’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks. Find out more about the UK visa sponsorship for employers

You’ll get an email or a letter containing the decision on your application. This will explain what you need to do next.
If you need to change or cancel your application

If you need to change something in your application after you’ve sent it to contact UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

You can ask to cancel your application. You’ll only get your fee refunded if the application has not been processed yet.

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You can also apply for the Canada Marriage Visa if you don’t want to apply for the UK marriage visitor visa