London will welcome the year of the horse in spectacular style in 2014, playing host to the largest Chinese New Year celebration outside of Asia. There is still time to arrange a visa to visit the UK for Chinese New Year, but the Home Office is expecting a big increase in applications in January and recommend you make your application as soon a possible. The Home Office short guide will help you to understand how to make an application, how long it will take, and how to get your visa more quickly if you find that you have left your planning until the last minute.
How to apply
The visa application process is quick and simple, and this year we have made it even easier to apply. You will need to make your application, pay and book an appointment online. Questions and guidance are translated to make it easier for you to complete the application form.
How long will it take
The UK Home Office aim to process 90 per cent of visit visas within 15 working days. Although the Home Office are currently well within this target, processing applications in just over 7 days on average, they recommend that you factor this into the planning of your visit and apply for your visa as soon as possible.
What if I have left it too late?
The UK Home Office’s popular 3-5 day priority service, for eligible customers, could help you to get your visa more quickly. You can select this option when you arrive at the visa application centre. You can find out more on their additional services page.
Need to travel or apply for another visa?
The UK Home Office passport passback service allows you to keep your passport while we process your visa, meaning that you can travel to another country, or apply for another visa while you wait. Find out more on their additional services page.
Will I be successful?
In 2013, 96 per cent of visit visa applications from Chinese nationals were successful. Making sure that you are honest in your application, and that you only submit genuine documents is really important, and will greatly reduce the chance of your visa being refused.
Chinese New Year in the UK
From Chinese artists in Trafalgar Square to the richly decorated Chinatown, where you will find food stalls, Chinese arts and crafts, traditional lion and dragon dances and dancing puppets, there is plenty on offer to make the new year festivities the perfect highlight of your trip to the UK.