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Wellbeing

Travelling and re-entering the UK during the holidays

By QMAdvice 26 Nov 2021

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This blog was written by the Advice and Counselling Service at Queen Mary.

You may want to travel, or have already travelled to your home country. Some of you might want to visit another country during the break, if the Covid travel restrictions allow. Here’s what to prepare before returning to the UK (check the official government web pages for the country you are due to travel to, to check any requirements for travelling to that country).

Covid Travel requirements

Firstly, check what the Covid travel requirements are at the time you are due to return to the UK. At the time of writing, there are some things you must do before travelling to England, including completing the Passenger Locator Formtaking a Covid test and receiving the results, and booking additional PCR test(s) for after you have arrived in the UK. See the full requirements on the UK government web pages.

Student immigration permission to continue on your course

If you have Student immigration permission and are returning to the UK to continue on your course, there are certain documents which you would be advised to carry in your hand luggage, including a Student Status letter in case you are questioned by a Border Force Officer about your reasons for returning to the UK. We explain which other documents you should prepare in our web guidance.

Pending EU Settlement Scheme application

If you have applied for Pre-settled or Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme, but have not yet received a decision, then you should carry the evidence of your valid application, the Certificate of Application, in your hand luggage as evidence you have made a valid application. We would also advise that you carry evidence that you meet the eligibility requirements for the EU Settlement Scheme, including that you were resident in the UK before 31 December 2020. This could be, for example, a rental agreement and bank statements showing you lived in the UK before 31 December 2020.

If you are a current Queen Mary student who has made an application under the EU Settlement Scheme, but do not have a Certificate of Application, please contact us urgently for advice.

NB: if you have made a valid application under the EU Settlement Scheme on the basis of an eligible family member, your evidence may be different, see the information from the UK Council for International Student Affairs.

If you have finished your course

If you have already finished your course, then you will need to carry evidence of your purpose for entering the UK. If you are entering the UK to attend your graduation ceremony, you can provide evidence of the Graduation ceremony, and that you will leave the UK before your visa expires.

If you are entering the UK to make a new visa application, for example in order to apply for the Graduate Route, then carry in your hand luggage proof that you will meet the requirements and be able to apply for the Graduate Route before your Student visa expires. This evidence could include a print out of your results showing that you have passed your course, and a print out of the email from the Immigration Compliance Team confirming that you may be eligible to apply.

We recommend that travelling back to the UK when Queen Mary is open (from 4 January 2022). Queen Mary students can contact us in case of any issues or problems in entering the UK.

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