UK Marriage Visitor Visa Timeline & Things You Should Know About Giving Notice of Marriage In The UK

The UK Marriage Visitor Visa is aimed at those that want to get married AND give notice of marriage in the UK but will then return home.  For example in our situation, I was a Brit living in the UK, my other half was an American living in the USA and we wanted to get married in England.  He returned home and I stayed in England and then went through the USA Green Card process once we were married.

(Updated May 2019)

Is UK Marriage Visitor Visa Multiple Entry?

The UK Marriage Visitor Visa can only be applied for within 3 months before the day you intend to land in the UK.  Just to make sure, we paid extra to get the application fast tracked so there was no chance of it getting held up in the post!  Once the visa has been granted, it is valid from the day you state you want to enter.  We made sure to say that we wanted a multi entry visa as Jesse flew home between giving notice and the wedding day due to work commitments!

OUR UK MARRIAGE VISITOR VISA TIMELINE

Application For Visa

7/3/15 – filled in online application, paid fees, booked biometric appointment

13/3/15 – attended biometric appointment in Des Moines, Iowa (it was our choice to have the appointment this day, it could have been sooner.  The nearest visa centre was a 3hr drive away…)

17/3/15 – posted application and evidence to New York

26/3/15 – received passport back complete with visa! (We paid to fast track the process)

Giving Notice of Marriage in the UK

30/4/15 – Jesse lands in the UK to give notice of marriage

8/5/15 – Due to UK law, we had to wait 8 nights (7 FULL days) to be able to register to get married, we had our interview and were given the go ahead!

*TIP* Please make sure to double check the amount of time that you are required to be in the country before you give notice, as this could change at any point since the writing of this post.  At the interview this was checked against the arrival stamp in the passport so make sure you don’t miscount!

Marriage Visa

For a foreign national wanting to get married in the UK, the actual wedding ceremony HAS to be at least 28 days after giving notice, so in reality the quickest it could be done for a foreign national is 36 days.  Jesse flew home and CAME BACK to the UK 4 months later…the visa is only valid for 6 months after the day you intent to first enter the country.

Getting Married In The UK

We got married – 5/09/15

There was no required time that he had to be in the country BEFORE the wedding.  Technically he could have landed the day before (…but that’s just extra stress…).

Marriage Visa UK – Documents Required

Evidence we included in our application:

  • A timeline of our relationship including, photos of us together, screenshots of FaceTime calls, scans of passport entry stamps, messages and comments from our friends and family etc
  • Exact details of what Jesse was planning to do while in the UK.  We sent copies of all his flight details and my mum wrote a supporting letter stating that he was staying at our house for the length of his trip.  Not only did the flight prove the dates that he was planning on entering and leaving the UK, it also showed that HE booked and paid for the flights and it wasn’t just me that was paying for everything.
  • 6 months of pay slips from his work to prove his income and that he was able to support himself.
  • Copies of the confirmations of the ceremony booking, the reception booking and the appointment to give notice of marriage.
  • The cover letter stated that I, Kylie, was planning to then go through the CR1 USA Green Card visa process once we had got married and mentioned that we would eventually  be living together at the American address that was mentioned in the visa application.

There’s a big thing with countries trying to crack down on sham marriages (where people only get married for the resident visa).  We found it a lot during the Green Card process and again with the UK Marriage Visitor Visa, that we were constantly having to prove that our relationship was real.  It’s exhausting but it’s something that needs to be done!

You’ll find all the information you’ll need on this website: https://www.gov.uk/marriage-visa

This visa currently costs £95.

Other International Couple Marriage Posts You May Enjoy

DIY Travel Themed Wedding Ideas For International/Long Distance Couples

Our Alternative Long Distance Relationship Wedding Readings

Kylie Signature

Travelling to England on a UK Marriage Visitor Visa?

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UK Marriage Visitor Visa and giving notice of marriage in the UK

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