I'm a non-US citizen with a green card wanting to go on vacations/visit friends and family in the UK.

I know I need the standard visitors visa but I have a few questions.

How long is the standard visa given for? Can I travel multiple times within that duration? I ask because they have different fees based on how long of a visa I want.

Edit: I found out that its for six months, still not sure if I can make multiple visits though.

You can also apply for a long-term visit visa if you can prove you need to visit the UK regularly over a longer period. You can stay for a maximum of 6 months on each visit and your visa can last for 1, 2, 5 or 10 years. Fees You must pay £85 to apply, plus an extra fee depending on the length of your long term-visit visa: 1 year - £324 2 years - £324 5 years - £588 10 years - £737

I might need to go a second time this year, so I am really trying to decide if its better to apply twice, or try to convince them to give me a longer term (1 or 2 year) visa. Would it be harder to get the long term visa than the short term one?

Also I think I should wait to buy tickets/hotels till I get the visa, but some people insisted that it might help with proof of my trip for the interview. Is that correct?

  • 1
    What is your citizenship? I don't think your green card is relevant. Jun 7, 2015 at 19:27
  • The green card is irrelevant. That is why I'm applying for the visa.
    – MAC
    Jun 7, 2015 at 19:33

1 Answer 1


The Visitor (standard) Visa is issued for a period of 6 months and is multiple entry.

For your question about trying to get a longer-term visitor visa, like 1 or 2 years, these are difficult to get unless you have been using UK visas for a long time. They prefer the person build up a track record of performance with the 6 month visa. If you apply for a 1 or 2 year visa without such a track record, most of the time they will issue a 6 month visa and keep the difference you paid (which is better than an outright refusal). However, your case may be different and there's nothing at all to stop you from trying for a 1 or 2 year visitor visa.

For your question about flight and hotel confirmations... These do not indicate your sincerity or intention to return to the USA. Their guidance points this out, and sending flight and hotel confirmations simply means to them that you have not read the guidance and possibly do not understand the rules (a bad thing). enter image description here Finally, your green card is helpful only to the extent that it demonstrates you have cleared some difficult hurdles in the USA and have (presumably) established a life there.

To get started, go to Apply for a UK visa

  • 1
    Thanks! That is what I kinda figured, but I wanted some confirmation.
    – MAC
    Jun 7, 2015 at 20:05

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