Travel update: UK transit visas

From 1 December 2014, anyone holding a valid visa or residence permit for Australia, New Zealand, the United States or Canada will be exempt from obtaining a transit visa when passing through the UK. Heathrow airport transfer

You will have up to 24 hours to move on to your next destination at no extra cost as long as you don’t need to pass through passport control. This means that if you fly into Heathrow and have a connecting flight out of Gatwick, Stansted or Luton airport you will need a Visitor in Transit visa to catch your connecting flight.

Other requirements:

  • You must arrive and depart, by air, from the same UK airport to another country outside of the Common Travel Area (UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man and the Republic of Ireland)
  • You need to be properly documented for your onward destination
  • You are also exempt if you possess an EEA or Swiss category D visa or an Irish biometric visa

Without a valid visa from one of the countries listed above or a valid UK visa or passport, you will have to apply for and purchase a transit visa. The good news is that the price has been reduced and you now have two years to use your transit visa from the date of issue.

Transit Visas fall into two categories:

  • Direct Airside Transit visa (DATV) £30 – Lasts 24 hours and does not allow you to pass through passport control.
  • Visitor in Transit visa £54 – Lasts 48 hours and allows you to pass through passport control (necessary if you are travelling on to another UK airport or region inside the Common travel Area).

You will need to provide two full-colour passport photos, a current passport and all other valid travel documents when applying.

For fast, expert assistance with your UK visa or passport that beats the queues, visit 1st Contact Visas.

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  • Niegel Dsouza

    Hey! I had a query

    I am traveling from Mumbai, India to the United States on the 28th. I got a halt at Heathrow for 3 and a half hours. I want to meet my aunt there so will I need a transit visa ? And if yes then will I get this visa at Heathrow Airport itself?

    • 1st Contact


      If you plan on meeting your Aunt outside of the airport, you will need a visitors visa.

      If you are in transit at Heathrow, you will need a transit visa but you will not be allowed to exit the airport and your Aunt wont be allowed into the transit or area you will be in because she will need a valid ticket and go through border control.

  • Vaseekaran Rajagopal

    Hello Sir,

    I am an Indian Citizen living in Austin, USA on H1b approved petition. I am on a business trip to Romania. On my return journey i need to switch flights from Luton Intl, England to Heathrow London Airport. The destination of my flight from Heathrow Airport is to Washington, USA.

    Can i get the “visitor in transit Visa” at the Luton Intl, while i am there? I will be having my passport and H1b approved petition and confirmed air tickets and two pass-port size photos. Any other documents needed ?

    Or is it safe to get the “Visitor in transit Visa” before i start my business trip from USA?

    Can u pls. advise?