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Visas and immigration

Last updated: 01/06/2023 12:26

If you’re planning to travel to the UK to study, you may need to apply for a visa before you travel.

Potential changes to 2023 immigration regulations

On 23 May 2023, the Home Office issued a statement that included information about potential changes to immigration regulations. Several points would impact Student Visa holders if implemented.

Please note that these are currently proposed changes only. They have not been written into law at this time and the rules remain as outlined in our guidance pages. We do not currently have any further information about the proposed changes. We will update our pages to reflect any confirmed changes as soon as this becomes possible.

The full Home Office statement can be read on the UK Parliament website and an explanation of how this may affect you can be found on the UKCISA website.

Types of visa

Student route visa

Most International students, including EU, EEA, and Swiss nationals who do not hold permission under the EU Settlement Scheme, will need to apply for a Student Route visa before travelling in order to study in the UK.

Information about the requirements for this route can be found in our downloadable guides on this page. We also recommend accessing the UKCISA information and Home Office guidance:

UKCISA - international student advice and guidance - Student route: eligibility and requirements

Student visa: Overview - GOV.UK (

Standard Visitor visa

If you are coming to the UK to study on a programme of under 6 months, for example, you will complete 1 semester of study abroad at Cardiff University, then you are eligible to do so with a Standard Visitor visa.

If you are a non-visa national, then you can apply for this at the border on arrival. You can apply in advance if you prefer.

If you are a visa national, then you must apply for this in advance. You can find further information about this route and the requirements here:

UKCISA - international student advice and guidance - Student route: eligibility and requirements

Student visa: Overview - GOV.UK (

Help with your fee status

If you need help determining your fee status as an international student, you can refer to the regulations governing fee classification.

Getting support with your visa

A flag consisting of multiple European flags

Before you apply for your visa

Information about who can help, which visa you should apply for and when, as well as how to get the documents translated.

Hands typing on a keyboard

Applying for your Student Route visa

Information on our visa application guidelines and how long your visa will take to arrive.

a young woman stands with folder in a classroom

Once you have your visa

Find out what to do next, when can you come to the UK, how long can you study and how long your visa is valid for.

4 students on steps

Extending a visa

Information about extending your visa if you're already a student in the UK, what to do if you plan to go home for the holidays and who to contact for help.

Postgraduate students discussing study options

Your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)

Information about how and when you will receive your BRP.