After all filling the forms and printing documents you will have the final point of Stage 2 Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa Process. In other words, you need to go to Visa Centre and bring a bundle of application with supporting documents. In most cases, you will go to the partner’s centre – VFS Global, TSL Connect or other services.
These companies are not the Home Office (or previously it was called UKVI). They are outsourcing and technology services. However, they are trusted by many governments and diplomatic missions worldwide. For example, UK Visas and Immigration has partnership with VFS Global in 33 countries.
Hence, being an applicant for Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa, chances are that you will go to the VFS centre in your country. In Ukraine, UK Visa applications are collected by TLS connect. Then they are carried to Poland. We do not have a visa decision centre in our country. In your country the situation may be different. At the same time, anyway the order of actions in visa centre is pretty much the same. Below I tried to explain main of them.
Make an appointment
The date and time are chosen when you are completing initial Stage 2 Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa Application. You will have a choice of free time appointment and paid one. Depending on your time frame and other personal reasons you can choose what time is the best for you.
Pay for visa and for a paid appointment (optional)
As usual, money play a decisive role. If you choose a date but do not pay for visa – your appointment will be cancelled in 2 hours. However, this declared two hours also are unstable. I have a sad experience. My appointment was cancelled after 15 minutes of not-paying-for-visa due to debit card issues. Also, it is required to pay for an appointment if you choose the paid appointment. You need to bring and show the proof of payment with you. Officers at the local visa centre will check it on the appointment time.
The application, appointment confirmation and if you have chosen it – a receipt for paid appointment. Sign the application and write a date. Do not hold papers together by a stapler or glue.
Add passport and other supporting documents
In some countries, for example, in Brazil there is a very convenient improvement of visa process. It makes the visa process faster. An applicant must print a special document with bar-codes for relevant categories. Then (s)he adds them in front of the appropriate category of supporting documents (or their photocopies). Also, there is no need to leave supporting documents in the visa centre for a consideration period. Visa officers give them back exactly at appointment. They keep only a passport. Unfortunately, in Ukraine we do not have this improvement of using bar-codes for supporting documents. Hence, we do not have any constant order of the supporting documents submission. Also, we need to leave all the documents in visa centre for the whole period of considering the application. Then we collect them together with passport after the final decision in the visa process.
At the Visa Centre
- In most cases, you do not need to add photos to your Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa application. Surely, unless you have different information from the visa centre. Previously, you had to bring a couple of 4.5cm x 3.5cm photos. But now visa officers will do your photos at the site. This photo will be used for your visa vignette and Biometric Residence Permit (BRP). So do a good haircut and have a nice clothes :). Moreover, your dependants will be also required to make this photo at the visa centre. Even, candidates for Exceptional Talent Child. So, please, prepare your kid for a photo session too.
- Go to the visa centre on the appointment date with the bundle of your documents. Then you will have an interview. Regarding the questions in the visa interview – nothing special. Perhaps, this is caused by the unique type of visa application. Neither me nor my dependants got questions at the interview. We just applied documents, made photos and went home. That is why, do not be nervous at this stage. Everything you needed to do you have already done.
- Wait for the final decision. You will have an on-line tracking of your application process. Hence, follow it and check your mailbox. When the decision in your visa case will be made, the visa center will inform you and also write time of work for collecting your passport.
- Having a notice about the readiness of your visa package for collection, go to the visa centre, bring your national passport with a photocopy of the first page. And also – a copy of birth certificate if you collect your kid’s passport. Hopefully, you will receive your passport with a nice vignette of Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in your passport and your future life will have a new turn in the United Kingdom.