I live in the US and I'm not a US Citizen. Just applied to the UK visa and received my passport back. I was supposed to go on a work project to India early August and on my way back I wanted to stay in London visiting friends. Which is why I put August 7th as a start date. However, the project changed and now it's a week earlier, meaning i will arrive in the UK (Transit) by July 31st. Am i going to be able to entry the UK? Can I change the date of entry? What can I do right now? My flight to India leaves July 22nd.


1 Answer 1


You received an entry clearance with a start date of 7 Aug, but a change in plans means you will arrive in the UK on 31 July. You want to know if this is OK?

No. It's decidedly not OK. They do not like it when this happens and so they have a rule in place to cover it. It's Paragraph 30C, which says...

An Immigration Officer may cancel an entry clearance which is capable of having effect as leave to enter if the holder arrives in the United Kingdom before the day on which the entry clearance becomes effective or if the holder seeks to enter the United Kingdom for a purpose other than the purpose specified in the entry clearance.

They have the authority to vary the dates on the spot, but this requires an awesome level of personal impact and articulation skills, we're talking personal impact like Kim Kardashian here. So for practical purposes you can expect to be in trouble (in the very strange event that the carrier will allow you to board in the first instance).

What can I do right now?

You need to go through a VFS even though you did not go through one originally; they are the only way a person can access priority services. Contact whichever VFS can act as your liaison in this matter and sign up for one of their super priority services. Since you are US based there's a wealth of them to select from, you can even customise one if you have the money. There is still enough time between now and your flight to get a variation on your visa's start date.

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    Reapplying seems to be the fastest and easiest way to go. Remember this visitor for instance. Jul 14, 2016 at 22:59
  • Thanks for the input. Priority services will be really expensive. I didn't do the application through vfs just regular application and UPS. I would have to get fingerprinted and stuff if I decided to reapply, right? Non priority service, considering the fact I already have a visa, will they take 10 business days as well or will it be faster? Jul 15, 2016 at 0:00
  • Oh also, visa applicants in the USA don't have to use VFS for normal applications; they are instructed to post them directly to the New York consulate. It appears that only priority and higher applications must go through VFS. Jul 15, 2016 at 2:57
  • I read that priority service is through the regular application. Takes from 3-5 business days. In this particular case that is for change of dates, is it possible to be less days? By re applying, it means I have to go to an application center and get finger printed, correct? There's no way to just send them the passport with a letter explaining the reason? Ahh why can't they issue visas with starting date as issue date Jul 15, 2016 at 3:59
  • I'm not sure why you are having a problem with this. At this point I would suggest arranging a telephone consultation with a member of the Law Society solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk
    – Gayot Fow
    Jul 15, 2016 at 4:09

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