I am a Canadian citizen who is currently working in the UK on a Tier 5 Visa. My visa is valid until January. My total time in the UK will be about four months.

When I arrived at Heathrow, I saw a border officer and received a stamp on my Visa. Now, I plan on visiting home for Thanksgiving (October) and coming back after spending seven days in Canada.

As a Canadian citizen, I can use the eGates at Heathrow. However, I am not sure if I need to get my passport stamped again if I reenter the country during my Tier 5 visa. Would it be safe to go through the eGates, or do I absolutely have to have a stamp in my passport upon reentry?

1 Answer 1


Depends on your tier 5 visa, but as your assignment is over 3 months you don't need to see an officer, you didn't need to when you originally came.

Getting your passport stamped by a Border Force officer

You should see a Border Force officer and get your passport stamped if you’re coming to the UK:

  • for short term study of up to 6 months
  • with a Tier 5 Creative and Sporting Certificate of Sponsorship for short-term assignments (up to 3 months)
  • to carry out Permitted Paid Engagements
  • as the family member of an EEA national seeking to join them permanently in the UK and you’re a national of Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea or the USA

If you use the eGates, please see a Border Force officer before you leave the port to receive a stamp in your passport.


  • I wish this was posted somewhere at the airport. All that it said there was that you need a stamp if "you are entering under certain Tier 5 Visas". It wasn't very specific, so I didn't want to chance it. Hopefully this might help someone else coming in on a Tier 5.
    – ArzaanK
    Commented Sep 24, 2019 at 13:04
  • @ArzaanK you're right the signs are ambiguous, so is some details on the gov.uk site, but this is only a few months old, I'm sure they're gathering feedback and even reading online about it. Majority of people will be tourists so for them it's pretty simple to assume to use them if theres a picture of their flag telling them to :) If ever in doubt go to a border officer, pointless risking immigration errors to save a little time.
    – BritishSam
    Commented Sep 25, 2019 at 14:26

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