Expat Life in Qatar

UK Visa Application from Doha.

May 1, 2016

I have just recently received my UK visa for our upcoming holiday this summer! Weeeehooo! All I need to do now is renew my Schengen visa and we’re all set for our holiday. I do hate the fact that I have to apply for visas everytime I go on a holiday since my third world country passport is so restricted. While doing my application though, I noticed that there’s not much information of the process for applying a UK visa from Doha. If you’re a first timer, you certainly would have a hard time getting all the information needed so I thought I should do a post about it (just like I did for a UK Visa Application from Dubai).

UK Visa Application from Doha.

You would need a UK visa if you’re traveling to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Island and this should not be confused with a Schengen visa which is only valid in Schengen countries. If your holiday involves going to countries in both areas then you would require to apply for both visas.

Who needs a visa?

You can visit this website (click here) to check whether or not you need to apply for a visa based on your nationality and the purpose of your visit to the UK.

What are the requirements?

There is no specific list of documents that you should submit in terms of UK visa application. All you really need are the documents to prove that you’re not going to illegal stay in the UK and that you have all the reasons to come back to Doha. So basically, you have to prove that you have a job to come back to here in Doha or if you’re a student, you need to prove that you’re doing your studies here. Having had previous visas from other Schengen countries would also help so you can submit a copy of those too.

A definite plan of your trip should also be presented – confirmed flight, hotel and tours booking would help you secure a UK visa. Take note, confirmed not paid.

Your financial capability to support yourself for the whole duration of your holiday in the UK must also be proved. There is no specific amount of money you must have in your bank account as it all depends on the length of your stay in the UK. Obviously, you can’t go on a month-long holiday in the UK if you only have QAR500 in your bank account. :p

In my case, being a housewife – I don’t have anything to prove that I’m working so I need to show my husband’s credentials instead. These are the documents I submitted:

1. My original passport.

2. Copy of my Qatar Residence Permit ID.
My new residence visa is not stamped on my passport and I only have the Qatar ID to prove my residency here. If you have your residence visa stamped in your passport, you may also submit a photocopy of the same. Also, you must make sure that your residence visa is valid at least 3 months after your scheduled holiday to the UK. (eg. Your holiday is from June 1-10, your residence visa must be at least valid until September 10). Note: you may not apply for a UK visa here in Doha if you’re not a resident of Qatar.

3. Confirmed flight booking.
You may go to any travel agencies or airline offices to make a confirmed flight reservation. You don’t need to buy the ticket itself, just a booking will do.

4. Confirmed hotel booking.
I used Booking[dot]com to make a hotel reservation. The hotel that we’re planning to stay in though has a cancellation penalty so I created a booking in a different property which allows me to cancel the booking anytime without any penalties. I have cancelled that confirmation after I got my visa and booked the hotel of our choice instead.

5. Employment certificate of my husband.
Since I’m not working and I have to prove that we’re coming back to Doha after our holiday in the UK, I sent my husband’s employment certificate which states his position in the company, the salary that he’s getting and how long has he been employed with the company.

6. Bank statement of my husband.
I also submitted my husband’s 6-month bank statement with the most current balance.

7. Marriage certificate.
With all of the above credentials under my husband’s name, I need to prove that we’re married right? So yeah, a copy of our marriage certificate was submitted. 🙂

8. A letter from my husband stating that we’ll be traveling together.
This can be as short as possible, you don’t need to write a whole novel to the embassy. In our letter, we mentioned that my husband will be traveling with me, that he’s currently employed and that he will personally finance everything on this trip. The letter I submitted was I think just two or three sentences short.

9. My husband’s passport copy.
Since he’s traveling with me, I need to prove that he also has the right documentations to legally travel to the UK. In our case, since my husband is Greek I just submitted his passport copy to show that he doesn’t need to apply for a UK visa. You don’t need to submit this if both you and your travel companion are applying for a visa at the same time.

10. My previous visas.
I have submitted all of my previous visas including my 8 Schengen visas, 1 UK visa and 1 US visa. If you don’t have previous visas issued to you, you may also send the copies of your passport pages with all the airport stamps of the countries you’ve visited. If you don’t have both, then you can skip this.

Once you have all the documents you need to prove your intent to visit UK for a holiday, you may start with the UK visa application.

UK Visa Application Procedure:

1. Create an account on this website (click here). After registering yourself, you should receive an email from the website with a link that you must click on to give you the full access to this website. You should wait for 5-15 minutes after registering and also, check your spam folders as mine went to spam right away.

2. Once registered, you must complete the application form on the website.

3. After completing the application form, you will then be redirected to another page to book your appointment. I completed my registration and application form on a Monday and the first appointment I got was Thursday of the same week.

4. Visa application fee worth USD131 will be paid online right after the booking confirmation.

5. Print the completed visa application form and appointment booking confirmation once done.

6. Submit your documents at the specified date of your appointment at the VFS office which is at the 3rd floor of Jaidah Square building.

VFS Doha Visa Application Centre 3rd Floor, Jaidah Square
Al Matar Street, Old Airport Road,
PO Box 76,

Once documents are submitted, they will send you an email or SMS (if you have opted for it which I think you should as it only costs QAR10 anyway) once your visa is processed. They would normally advice that visa may take 14 working days just to be on the safe side. I normally get my passport back earlier than that though and during this visa application, I got it back at exactly 7 days (including weekends) after I submitted my documents. Passports can be collected between 4-5pm in the same office.

All of the information stated on this blog post are valid at the time of my UK visa application (April 2016). Procedure and documentation required may change without prior notice hence, double checking with the consulate, embassy or VFS is highly recommended. Whatever information I know of UK visa application are already stated in this blog post, if you have any other questions which aren’t answered in this post – you should contact the embassy or the consulate directly. Asking visa-related questions to a blogger isn’t the best thing to do as I am not an expert on this and is in no position to give out any advice about sensitive matters such as a visa procedure. In this case, comment section is closed on this blog post and no, I also won’t answer your questions sent to me through Facebook or email.

Good luck and enjoy your UK holiday! 🙂

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