I am a Ghanaian student studying in the US. I am scheduled to be travelling to Ghana via the UK. I have a 3 hour layover in the airport and then my flight for Ghana departs. I have a valid F-1 visa for the US so do I need to apply for a transit visa for the UK?
Short: A UK transit visa (formally a 'direct airside transit visa or 'DATV) is NOT required in your case as long as all your travel documents and visas as required for the US and Ghana are in order and you complete the transit within 24 hours.
Longer / Because:
You will not need to have a DATV to transit UK airspace because you meet the following conditions:
You are a national of a country covered by the DATV system (Ghana) and
You are arriving and departing by air
Your onward flight is confirmed and
You depart within 24 hours (as planned) and
You have proper documentation for your destination, including a visa if necessary.
You must hold a valid entry visa for the USA, and a valid airline ticket for travel via the UK, as part of a journey between the US and Ghana.
The above is obtained from the UK Border agency site - Do I need a visa to transit airside? which is the one that 'Solver' cited.
I get the opposite answer to him after reading:
3rd paragraph headed "You can transit the UK airside without a visa if:"
Pop out list at bottom of page with heading "Nationalities requiring a DATV", which advises that Ghana IS one such country BUT
this is modified in pop out list at bottom of page headed "Transit without visa' concession - DATV exemptions" - which provides the conditions which I summarised above
You also do not need a DATV if the following applies to you:
You are recognised as stateless under the 1954 UN Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons
You hold a valid travel document issued by the UK government
You are recognised as stateless under the 1951 UN Refugee Convention and qualify for the DATV exemption under the 'transit without visa' concession - see under 'More information' below.