I am curious about the UK Visa system. If I am applying from a small country, say Singapore vs India, where does the visa processing happen? Does it happen in a centralized location, or is it processed by respected embassies?

Does the processing time vary according to the country?

  • 3
    Ms. Mary Jones, 39, of Epping.
    – hobbs
    Aug 8 at 19:54

1 Answer 1


UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) runs a network of international application points and decision making centres. The decision making process has been moved away from Embassies to various large-scale hubs around the world such as Istanbul and Beijing. In a bid to centralise the process, much of the decision making for UK visa applications now takes place in the UK, in offices based in Croydon, Sheffield and Liverpool.

The decision making centre in which your application will be reviewed depends on which type of visa you are applying for and which VAC you attended. For example, if you are applying for a visit visa from Singapore, your application will be reviewed at a decision making centre in Beijing. But those customers filing a visit visa application from the Americas region will have their application decided by caseworkers in Croydon. Most applications for work or study visas submitted overseas will be decided at UKVI’s decision making hub in Sheffield.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/list-of-ukvi-international-application-points-and-decision-making-centres/list-of-ukvi-international-application-points-and-decision-making-centres-accessible-version

No matter which decision making centre an application is directed to, the Home Office has standard processing times which it aims to uphold for all applications.

Standard UK visa processing times vary depending on type of application you are submitting, whether you are filing your application from inside or outside the UK, and whether you choose to utilise any of the Home Office priority services to receive a faster decision.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visa-decision-waiting-times-applications-outside-the-uk


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