I have a quick question if anyone can help it would be appreciated. My friend (she is Canadian) is on a trip through Europe. She arrived in London for a layover today before heading onto the continent to ultimately meet with friends in Switzerland. Who tours are for a total of 3 weeks with only tonight and I think three other days at the end of the trip base in the UK. When she landed today she had some problems with border control.

She previously applied and was declined a work visa for the UK, she decided at the time to not reapply as a work opportunity arose here and the cost to reapply was not affordable for her at the time. The reason for the application not being accepted was because she applied under the wrong category.

When she hit border control today they detained her, she finally got accepted in but I was looking for any advise or paperwork I could send her to help when she travels back into the UK for a few more days before heading home.

Can anyone suggest anything?

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    The exact circumstances are still fairly unclear to me at least but she could apply for an entry clearance. Why don't you search our site for that keyword until you get a better answer?
    – mts
    Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 19:34
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    I'm going to imagine I'm talking to the traveller for the sake of making things easier: 1. You applied for a work visa, and were refused (provided the reason wasn't deception, it doesn't matter). 2. You attempted to enter the UK without a visa. This led to you being held for extended questioning before being admitted. 3. You intend to visit the UK again briefly, before returning home. Is this correct? Also, very important - after the interview, was entry granted for the standard six months, or were you refused entry, but granted temporary admittance? Were you given any paperwork?
    – CMaster
    Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 19:45
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    They just stamped the passport but said there would be problems again when entering the UK for more than just a lay over
    – HBBC
    Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 19:51
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    Actually an entry clearance might be hard to get while traveling... this post says as much
    – mts
    Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 20:43
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    It is much better if the traveler comes here to ask the questions herself. Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 21:05

1 Answer 1


This story would be much clearer (and your friend could get much better advice) if she'd represent herself here.

That being said, your friend has a refusal for a Tier 2 visa in her history and that is causing her problems even for just a layover. Now when already that layover caused her a fair bit of trouble, she can expect worse (including detention) when showing up and attempting to stay for a few days - as she has been told in no unclear words as it seems.

She should apply for an entry clearance which would greatly improve her standing with immigration officers in the future. How to do so is described in this post for the US - the Canadian case is likely similar. The problem with that it is likely practically impossible to get it while traveling, as passport and other documents need to be sent in.

So my advice is:

  • Short run: for now she should not try to attempt flying via UK again (and not dare stay there) and instead re-route to fly out via Schengen.
  • In the long run once she is home she should obtain an entry clearance. Once she got that, her immigration standing for the future is going to be much better.
  • 1
    There are things she could do if attempting to enter the UK without a visa, not that I'd advise doing that. Evidence of ties to Canada (property, job etc) would almost certainly help.
    – CMaster
    Commented Jul 15, 2016 at 8:10
  • @CMaster true but given her history I would advise against that. She risks detention at her next entry.
    – mts
    Commented Jul 15, 2016 at 8:14

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