I am from India going to Bangor, Wales for higher studies and my destination airport is Manchester via London Heathrow.

Do I need a transit visa?

  • 1
    As a comment, there are direct trains from Manchester to Bangor, but there are is also a direct London Underground connection from Heathrow to King's Cross, which is a ten-minute walk to London Euston, and there are also direct trains from Euston to Bangor. Your second flight may be unnecessary.
    – TRiG
    Sep 8 '16 at 9:27
  • 5
    @TRiG And, in news that will be bizarre to people not familiar with the UK rail network, the direct train from Euston to Bangor (about 450km) and the trains from Manchester Airport to Bangor (only about 150km but involving a ~30min wait at Chester) both take about three hours. On the other hand, the asker might be planning to travel by bus, which would be quite a bit faster from Manchester than from London. Sep 8 '16 at 11:29

"Transiting" means entering a country only for the reason of changing planes etc. to continue on towards your destination in a different country. For example, if you flew from India to Germany and then immediately from Germany to the UK, you would be transiting in Germany.

You are not transiting in the UK because, the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) is one country. You are going to London only so that you can take another plane, but that second plane is not to a different country.

The visa that you need for your studies is the only visa you will need to enter the UK.

  • 1
    For an explanation of the differences between the countries contained within the UK, see youtube.com/watch?v=rNu8XDBSn10
    – Gremlin
    Sep 8 '16 at 9:44
  • 4
    Or a short version is that, as a matter of courtesy you may refer to Wales as a separate country from England. That is to say, don't go up to drunk Welsh people and scream "it's not a country, it's a principality", even if that's technically true. But from the POV of legal jurisdiction "England and Wales" is one unit (Scotland is another). From the POV of travel and immigration the UK is one unit. Sep 8 '16 at 11:18
  • 1
    That is, you've given the correct immigration advance (so far as I know), but let's not allow some innocent foreign student to put his foot in it on arrival in Bangor because he's learned on the internet that England and Wales are not "different countries" ;-) Sep 8 '16 at 11:34
  • 1
    Anyway, Manchester and London are certainly in the same country, by any definition.
    – TRiG
    Sep 8 '16 at 12:06
  • 1
    Cue the well known (if apocryphal) practical jokes of making someone hide in the luggage space of a vehicle crossing the Severn Bridge, in order to avoid being caught and deported by customs and immigration checks at the border between England and Wales. (There are no such checks, of course).
    – alephzero
    Sep 8 '16 at 13:50

Bangor, Manchester and London are all in the same country (United Kingdom), so A visa that will allow you to get in to the UK should be useable for any method of entry, specifically it shouldn't matter if you enter in Heathrow or in Manchester.

I also believe you'll go through immigration in Heathrow, and the flight to Manchester is a domestic route.

  • You will go through immigration at Heathrow, but (IIRC) customs at Manchester. I haven't flown through Manchester, but if it's like Glasgow or Edinburgh then: as you are on an domestic flight, you will come through the domestic baggage collection. There will be a customs desk in the collection area, at which you should declare any items than need to be declared.
    – CSM
    Sep 10 '16 at 14:34

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.