youth mobility visa, FAQ, canadian in the uk questions, Street art in Vienna, FAQ
Photo courtesy of judo10

Hi there! I suspect if you’ve found your way to this Frequently Asked questions, it’s because you’re planning on applying for your UK Youth Mobility Visa – welcome! If you haven’t read YMS visa application guide yet, read this first.

Just as for the application guide post, the same applies for the FAQ: If you have read through the guide, the FAQ, and all the comments, then I don’t have an answer for you. “Unique” situations and questions that have been answered in posts or previous comments will not get a response.

Happy travels!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Immigration Health Surcharge?

If you are applying for a Youth Mobility Visa, you are now required to pay an Immigration Health Surcharge. This amounts to £150 per year of the visa validity, therefore £300. No, it doesn’t matter that you only plan on staying in the UK for 3/5/9 months. You must pay the IHS before completing your Tier 5 YMS visa application as it will ask for the reference number when you apply.

What is this business about a Biometric Residence Permit?

If you apply for the YMS visa after May 31, 2015, you will receive a sticker in your passport instead of the vignette with the full 2-year visa granted. You must provide an accurate UK postcode as part of your application as you will be designated a specific Post Office branch to pick up your biometric residence permit. You will receive a letter with your passport when it is returned to you telling you which Post Office that is. Your BRP is the proof of your right to work in the UK and must be carried with you at all times.

BRPs must be collected from a post office within 10 days of arriving in the UK and the vignette sticker is only valid for 30 days after your intended date of arrival. If you cannot pick up your biometric residence permit in time, inform the Home Office here.

This has two implications:

1) You must put an accurate address on your application.

2) You must travel within 30 days of your intended date of arrival. If you change your travel date you will have to go to the Visa4UK website to apply for a transfer of visa.

* * *

I think I made a mistake with my youth mobility visa application, what do I do?

Do not freak out if you think you’ve done something a little bit wrong. Here is what will happen.

If you have provided:

  • A document in the wrong format;
  • A document missing from a sequence of documents;
  • A document that is a copy and not an original; or
  • A document that does not contain all the required information

They will contact you by writing or telephone to tell you what you need to send. They must receive it within 7 working days.

Also, if a document provided is in the wrong format, is a copy, does not contain all the required information BUT can be verified from other documents in the application, the website of the organization or regulatory body that issued the document, they MAY approve your application exceptionally.

If you are turned down, you can appeal the decision. Read the Guidance document for more information.

How do I know if they are out of spots? What if I waited too late in the year?!

Canada has 5,500 places in the UK Youth Mobility Scheme. When I asked the woman at the application centre, she said that Canada has never even come close to using all of the spots. In June 2013, approximately 370* of these visas were processed in Canada.

Here is what will happen is there are no spots left:

Directly from the Guidance document: “…a notice will be released to notify customers of this. The notice will be published on the relevant UK embassy, High Commission or Diplomatic Post website.”

If there is no notice, then you may still apply. If you’re confused about what the relevant website would be, it is the British High Commission in Canada website if you’re Canadian. The High Commission in Australian website if you’re Australian, etc.

* If you would like to calculate that number for yourself here is how – They are no longer releasing the numbers for visas processed.

Look people. Seriously. Canadians between the ages of 18-30 are not particularly enthusiastic about moving to the UK. I know you think they are, because you are, but they are not. There will be places left no matter when you apply. In the decade-plus that this visa has been going, Canadians have never used up all the spots. So this is not something to worry about. Seriously. As mentioned, check the UK embassy website. For Canadians, that is the British High Commission in Canada website.

The online application is asking for a UK address and phone number - what do I do?

I put down the address and phone number of my partner’s family. If you don’t have friends or family in the United Kingdom, find a hotel or hostel where you will be staying and supply their number. This is simply to ensure that you will be going somewhere when you arrive in the UK and there is a record of your stay. No, you don’t HAVE to stay there but they will ask you again for this when you arrive in country, so you better have a place to stay booked or arranged.

Make sure that the address you write is at least NEARBY where you plan on staying (e.g. don’t put an address in London if you’re going to Cardiff). As of May 31, 2015, you will have to pick up a biometric residence permit from a post office near you, which will be indicated in a letter from the UKBA.

Compare hostel and hotel prices at or sign up for a new Airbnb account with this link and you’ll get $50 off your first trip over $95!

When does my visa start? How far in advance can I apply?

It starts on the date you requested it to start – that is your intended date of arrival. This date must be within six months of the date of your application. Your application will be rejected if you try to date it further in the future than that. So, if the start date is February 17, 2017 and you arrive on March 10, 2017, your visa will still only be valid until February 17, 2019.

You may arrive in the UK whenever you like, but your time will start running out after the visa validity date, regardless of whether you have arrived in the country. If you change your travel date to after your temporary vignette expires, you must apply for a transfer of visa on the Visa4UK website.

If you don’t enter the country to activate the visa, you can reapply at a later date.

NEW: For applications made after May 31, 2015, you will be issued a 30-day clearance sticker (in your passport). This sticker is only valid for 30 days after your intended date of arrival. If you plan on arriving later than that, you will have to request a new one. Your official “visa” is a biometric residence permit card, which must be picked up within 10 days of arriving in the UK.

I don't understand this bank statement date thing - why do I have to have the funds in my account for 30 days?

You don’t. You must show that the minimum maintenance funds were in your account on the date of your application.

Furthermore, your documents cannot be more than 30 days old (30 days before your application date). If you apply on February 17, your documents must be dated on or after January 17.

Can I enter the UK prior to the visa start date?

Yes, BUT you must leave and re-enter on or after the start date of your visa in order to validate it. If you are a few days to a week early, they will validate your visa, but you will not be allowed to commence working until the visa validity date on the visa and the border security might grill the shit out of you to make sure you weren’t planning on it.

Does my TFSA (tax-free savings account) count towards my maintenance funds?

Yes. I included a print-out from Scotiabank explaining that TFSA is a cash access account, because I’m meticulous like that.

Can I work as a pharmacist/doctor/sportsperson? What restrictions are there on work?

You may not work as a doctor or dentist in training, unless you can demonstrate you attained a degree in those fields in the UK. You are not allowed recourse to public funds (i.e. welfare). You may not be employed as a professional sportsperson or sports coach. You are allowed to be self-employed as long as you don’t own a business premises (other than your home); the value of your equipment does not exceed £5000; and, you have no employees.

You can work anywhere in the United Kingdom.

I lost my old passport - what do I do?

Try as best you can to remember your previous travel and indicate on the application that the passport has been lost.

I haven't heard about whether my visa has been issued. It's been two weeks and you got yours in a week! Does this mean I've been rejected?!

No. The visa processing centre endeavours to have visas issued within 10 business days, but anything can arise that will push the processing time back. I know this isn’t reassuring, but: just wait until you hear. You can check what the average processing times have been throughout the month by following the same process as I outlined in the ‘How do I know if they are out of spots?’ answer.

If you have followed the instructions, meet the requirements and are not a convicted criminal or have been removed from a country, 95% of the time you will not have been rejected. THIS IS A REALLY EASY VISA TO GET AND VERY DIFFICULT TO MESS UP. THEY ARE APPARENTLY FORGIVING WITH MISTAKES. YOUR SITUATION IS NOT AN EXCEPTION. STOP WORRYING.

What if I become pregnant?

You will be in violation of the terms of the visa and must leave the country voluntarily or you will be removed from the UK.

I suspect that they want to avoid the drama of people seeking settlement because they have children born in the UK. I actually think they may have removed the line about pregnancy from the document (probably because, in my opinion, it was offensive and sexist). If you become pregnant and are in your first 12 months of your stay and unemployed, you will not be covered by the NHS. You will be required to pay for any antenatal care, including delivery. If you have paid the health surcharge then you will be covered. However, under the terms of the visa you cannot have any dependents; therefore, giving birth in the UK would breach your visa terms and if you are found out or reported to the UKBA, then yes, they can deport you.

Do I need a return ticket?

A return ticket is not necessary.

Can I study while on this visa?

Yes, but it must not be the main purpose of your stay in the UK nor should you obtain a degree. If you wish to obtain a degree, you must return home and apply for student visa. It appears that the rules have changed and you can study while on the Youth Mobility Visa. Some courses require an ATAS certificate.

However, the immigration rules state that in order to obtain leave in one of these categories you “must intend to work”. Therefore when you applied you did so on the understanding that your main intention in the UK was work.

If you later change your mind and decide to study, there is a danger that the immigration authorities may think that your reasons for being in the UK have changed, and they could decide to cancel your visa. If you do undertake study while holding a work visa, it is advisable to continue working in the UK.

It is acceptable to study part time whilst holding a visa in one of these categories. Remember, however, if your visa runs out before the end of your course you cannot obtain an extension as a Student in order to complete your studies, since you must be studying full time in order to be granted a Tier 4 student visa.

Is it possible to switch between visa types?

No. If you are currently in the UK, on a student visa for example, you must leave the UK in order to apply for the YMS visa. If you are on the YMS visa and would like to switch to another points-based visa, then you must begin the process prior to your current visa’s expiry date. That being said, if you’re currently working for an employer they can sponsor you for a Tier 2 visa. You must begin before your visa expires and you will still have to return to Canada while the visa is being processed. I have heard a rumour that you don’t have to leave in the case of applying for Further Leave to Remain (Marriage). Since your permission to stay was longer than 6 months, then you can apply from within the UK. This visa allows you to continue working in the UK.

Do I need traveller's insurance?

No. I was not asked at the border and you will be covered by the NHS upon arrival in the UK (between the validity dates of your visa). Whether you want to have it, i.e. for repatriation and such, is another question. I wrote a follow up post regarding opening a bank account, registering the NHS and National Insurance number – read it here.

Should I pay for priority service?

I don’t know! This costs US $228 and your visa will be the first processed in the batch that arrives at the same time. If you have already attended your appointment, you can apply for retrospective priority, the details of which are here.

Do I have to disclose my traffic offences?

That depends. They ask about crimes you have been convicted of, they’re looking for drug traffickers, murderers, assault and battery and the like. The application said in my day said ‘except minor traffic offences’. That said, if you have been convicted of a DUI or something similar, that should be disclosed. By minor, they mean parking tickets and speeding tickets (unless you were drag racing, but then you would be charged with reckless endangerment, right?).

The Essential Youth Mobility Visa Handbook
 Why waste time sifting through 10 different resources when you can get it all in one place? The Essential Youth Mobility Visa Handbook: Everything Canadians Need to Know about Getting the Visa and Moving to the UK contains 56 pages of useful information that will help you make your dream of moving abroad a reality!

Get it now!

More YMS Visa Posts:

Should I move to the UK first or find a job first?

What’s the difference between a British CV and a North American resume?

How long will it take me to find a job in London?

How to Bring Money Over to the UK?

What do I do about my taxes while on the Youth Mobility Visa?

Should I put my Youth Mobility Visa status on my CV?

How do I find a flat in London?

How do you make friends in London?

Updated:  12 March 2017

324 thoughts on “UK Youth Mobility Visa for Canadians – Frequently Asked Questions”

  1. Hi Alyssa,

    Thanks for all the detailed information. I’m in the process of filling out the application and the section about all the countries you’ve been too in the last ten years has stumped me. A lot of the countries I have visited have been through cruise ships, where I’ve gotten off in port but only for one day and my passport has not been stamped. Do these need to be written down in the application even if there is no passport stamp?



  2. Hello Alyssa,

    Firstly I would just like to say I’m so glad I found your blog, this is really gonna help me out in the long run. And secondly, once I apply for my Youth visa for the UK for the and stay there for the first 2 years can I reapply for the same visa for another 2 years?

  3. Hi!
    A few years ago I applied for the tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa and got approved. I did a 2 month internship with my visa (which they asked for) and came back to Canada to finish my college program.

    I unfortunately let my visa expire after only using 2 months out of 2 years expire. It’s a bit of a longshot to ask this question on this platform and get an answer but would you know that if I reapplied would it be outright denied because I had it (even if I didn’t use it, and still qualify for the visa in every single other requirement)? Has there ever been anyone who has received this visa twice?

    Best regards,

  4. Hi Alyssa,

    Fantastic work helping everyone here — really great.

    My question is the following
    – My visa was rejected because my funds were in a TFSA Mutual fund not cash.

    I travel July 23 to go across Europe and plan on entering the UK on September 14. Waiting on my passport to be returned to me from VFS so cannot apply again right away without it.

    Can I apply again and collect my BRP from within the UK if I don’t get passport back in time to schedule another appointment? Canada already has my biometrics from my first application do they need to do this again?

    If I get the passport back in time and schedule another appointment and then elect to keep my passport — would I be able to enter the UK on the 14th without the actual vignette yet?

    Worst case scenario is me having to go back to Canada instead of London on Sept 14 and start the application process from scratch.

    Best case scenario would be me being able to enter the UK as a tourist, collect my BRP and all is fine.

  5. Hi Alyssa, I’m going to be apply soon and my only concern is with my health card. It expires in a little over a month and I’m a little afraid if I book my appointment now will my health card be excepted if I have the old one and the paper work stating I’m just waiting for the new one to arrive in the mail when I attend the meeting would this cause complications Or be excepted? Thank you for you time

  6. So just to clarify because the site says “If you turn 31 while you’re in the UK, you can stay for as long as your visa is valid.”
    Can you travel to say Spain and then come back in to finish our your Visa or once you turn 31 you have to remain in the country or else your visa will no longer be valid. If I have a year left on my visa when I turn 31 can I still take weekend trips or am I stuck?
    Ps read all the threads so just a yes or no would greatly help 🙂

  7. Hi Alyssa,

    Have you come across anyone who applied for their visa in a country that wasn’t their own that wasn’t there on a work visa?

    The UK govt say that you can apply from any country so long as you’re allowed to be living in the country you select and have been granted permission to stay there for 6 months….

    I would interpret this to mean that i’m allowed to apply from Canada where I can get a 6 month tourist visa, but don’t really want to go down that path without a little reassurance (I’m currently travelling in the US and would rather not have to go home to NZ to apply first).

    Thanks for such a wonderful resource – it’s super helpful!.

  8. I applied for my visa on 03/28/2019 but my bank statement is dated 04/01/2019, is that okay or does it have to be within 31 days PRIOR to 03/28/2019? If so can I just attach an additional non-stamped online banking printout showing my balance a few days prior to when I applied on 03/28/2019? Thanks!

    1. Hi Andy, did you end up getting an answer to this question? Currently in the same situation. Thanks!

  9. Hi Alyssa, I have a very important question to ask, I would appreciate your feedback on it. I am well aware of the £1,890 that you need in a bank statement as proof of savings. I am applying for the visa in a couple of days and I want to know if the officer in the UK will normally check these funds and if you have them with you when you arrive in the UK. I am sure I will not possess this exact amount of money by the time I get there as I have other bills and expenses like airplane ticket and maybe even a couple of days of visiting europe before I get there. Do you remember when you did this,if when you arrived they checked how much money you had on you or if anyone else has? do you know if you have to have the full £1890 or if its ok as they won’t check or won’t care? Thank you.

  10. I applied for a tier 5 yms visa and my application was refused because my funds are located in a tfsa. Not sure if the rules have changed …. but just a heads up that tfsas are a no go it seem

    1. are you serious? oh my god, thanks for the heads up! I am applying 2 days from now and that is exactly where I have my funds allocated. Better move them then!

  11. Hi Alyssa,

    Thank you for this post! I don’t know if you can answer this question, but I figure I might as well ask!

    I just arrived back in Canada after studying in the UK for a year, intending to apply for the Tier 5 visa. I had thought that I’d be able to go back as soon as I got the visa, only to see that I needed a minimum of 6 months before intended travel date. My question is, let’s say I apply saying that my intended date of travel is in 6 months, am I able to travel earlier than that once I’ve received my visa?

    Thank you again for this post and all your information on this website!

  12. I would like to add some additional information for those who are applying for the YMS visa as part of their plan to be closer to their boyfriend/girlfriend.

    I just got my visa today which I am so darn happy, but before that I was stressed out because I added information about my boyfriend, as well as stating that he is my boyfriend. After I submitted my application and while waiting for my passport, I stumbled across a few blogs and questions about these details. Most people suggest not to add those details in as the immigration office might think of us for trying to get married while in the UK (although that suggestion was from 2011). I was really panicking about it but I ended up getting my visa anyway.

    If you can, its best to not add that detail in your application to avoid complications that ‘could’ occur. But say if you did add the info, make sure other documents are intact. For example…

    1). Include both your bank statement (with the visible account number and official bank stamp) and bank letter that shows the official bank stamp and at least 1890 pounds (best to make sure it is converted to GBP on the letter as well), it also might be better if you have a little more than 1890 pounds in your account if the exchange rates change.

    2). Include evidence of your older passport, and if you have a dual citizenship like me ( I am Australian and Thai), and have traveled to the UK to study (I used my Thai passport since I was applying from Thailand), include a copy of your old visa as well as proof.

    Other than that the usual.

    Good Luck to you all!!! I hope your process will be smooth and you guys get your visa!

  13. Hi there I have received my visa in the mail and now something came up so I am unable to travel to the uk until a little bit later and will be passed the expiry date on my visa (the 30 days to enter) how to I go about extending my entry date? hope that makes sense


    1. “BRPs must be collected from a post office within 10 days of arriving in the UK and the vignette sticker is only valid for 30 days after your intended date of arrival. If you cannot pick up your biometric residence permit in time, inform the Home Office here.”

  14. Hi Alyssa,

    In regards to the bank statement most of my savings are in an rsp mutual fund account. Any idea if this is okay given that they are redeemable or if i should switch accounts?


  15. Hi Alyssa,

    Thanks for your blog and guide! It is extremely helpful. What I have yet to find out is if the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa comes with a national insurance number on the back of the BRP. As I have found that some visa’s will have it on the back. Did your BRP have a national insurance number or did you have to apply for one. If you had to apply for one, did you do it in the UK or while in Canada and how long did it take?

    Thank you so much!

  16. Hi Alyssa,
    I swear I have read these threads 1000’s of times now, and I am 17 days away from my visa appointment.
    I think I have everything ready, but, I just read a forum saying all my information and application/fee’s/receipts had to be on A4 sized paper…..
    I cannot seem to find any A4 sized paper anywhere in my city – is this a for sure necessity? Will they refuse my application for being on US letter sized paper?
    My bank statement was mailed to me as well, on US Letter sized paper… Help!!!!

  17. Hi Alyssa, I have a question that hope you can please clarify for me. I am going to turn 31 on March 13 of next year 2019, and as you already know, one of the requirements for this type of visa is that you must be 30 at the time of the application. I am going to apply some time around February 18 and I think that is good time in advance to get my appointment and my visa approval before I leave for the UK. My question has two parts though. The first is, do I must absolutely have to arrive in the UK before I turn 31? say for instance that when I apply for my visa I must put a a date before March 13 as my arrival date? It doesn’t matter when I get my approval letter on the mail as long as I applied before the above mentioned date right? the second part of that question comes from the 6 months in advance I am allowed to apply for the visa as to what I’m expected my arrival date to be. But must this be before my 31st birthday? or could I for example apply on february 18 and put say May 2019 as my arrival date even though is a good 2 months later after I turned 31? An answer to this question would greatly help me and I would appreciate it and than you in advance.

  18. Hey Alyssa,
    This website has been super helpful thanks! Just was wondering if you might know the answer to this question. I am Canadian about to fly home to Canada from Australia where I have been living for a few years. I am in the process of gathering my stuff for this UK application which I will be applying with Canadian address and attending a biometric appointment there. Because I am currently in Aus and wanting to attend the appointment on my way home I thought I would do the online application now to get a start. For the banking statement am I able to get the bank at home in Canada to issue me an official statement on letterhead with signature and stamp and colour scan it to me in email form so I can print it here? Or is that not okay? Do I need to go and physically get the original piece of paper in Canada from the bank and use that?

    Thanks in advance!

  19. Hi Alyssa,

    I read your FAQ and comments…you wrote that because of the new BRP, you can arrive in the UK before the “valid from” date, without having to leave and re-enter the UK after that date. Can you tell me where you found this information? Everything else I read online seems to state otherwise. In my case I arrive to the UK 5 days before my “valid from” date. I have no intentions to work before that date, but I’m wondering if I have to present travel documents to prove I plan to leave and re-enter to activate my visa? Thanks!

  20. Hi Alyssa,

    I read your FAQ and skimmed the comment section…You said that it is no longer a requirement to leave and re-enter the UK if you arrive before the “valid from” date in the vignette (in my case, I arrive 5 days before). Can you tell me where you found this information? Everything I’ve read elsewhere online states that not only will I have to leave and re-enter, I should also show proof of a train ticket purchased to do so.

  21. Hey Alyssa,

    Love this page you’ve put together and surprised you are still responding to questions after a year of being published.

    I do have 2 questions and I don’t think I saw it any of the FAQs or questions from other commenters.

    Does an individual become eligible for a NIN after they get approved for the youth mobility visa? I just want to make sure my taxes will be in order.
    I’m a Canadian with a (Republic of Ireland) Irish residence permit and I’m expecting to travel to London frequently for work. Will the youth mobility visa allow me to both live in Ireland for the majority of 2 years and work for a UK employer?

    Thanks in advance!


  22. Hi Alyssa!
    I applied for a T5 YMV from Vancouver. I just got my refusal letter because I was short £98 from the required £1890 due to an exchange rate banking error. I applied for an Administrative Review. Have you ever heard of someone being allowed to fix this, prove they DO have the required maintenance funds and was allowed their visa? I’m so heartbroken, I was intending to move to the UK with my partner.

  23. Hi! I just applied for a Youth visa and realize I was way too in advance. Firstly, I am leaving in June 2019 only and they gave me an appointment in 3 weeks…which is way too early as I don’t even have the full amount of savings required yet so I ask for refund and cancelled my application. I didn’t receive a confirmation it was successful yet. My question is will this affect my future application? Cause I will have to reapply probably end of December 2018 or early January 2019 to be in the 6 months. I am planning on visiting my husband in the UK in this coming December as well, so I didn’t want my visa to start then when I am only there for the holidays. I am a bit scared they might reject my refund request or cancel my application and never gave me back the money as I can’t afford to lose my investment again. Any tips? Thanks a lot!

  24. Hi, I have read through many comments here but no one seems to ask if there are any limitation of the TYPE of job you can apply for. For example, I am interested in applying to work for the UK civil service. As a Canadian citizen, I am not sure if I would qualify to work for a foreign government, or if they would have me.

    Any advice on this?

  25. Hi Alyssa, my question is very simple. I am a Canadian citizen but I was born in Colombia. I go back to my native country all the time, so as I already know from doing some research, that there are in fact UK offices in my country and in cities where I can easily go to. So the obvious question is: Can I apply as a Canadian for the 5 tier youth mobility visa scheme from Colombia and do everything just like I was in Canada? This is very important for me to know because I’m planning to go there for 2 months and so I believe I need to do it from there not only because it would be more convenient, but because if I apply from Canada and I get approved I’m not sure if I would need to go to the UK before the 30 days grace expire of receiving the visa sticker pass. Thank you.

      1. what do you mean by 6 months minimum? Does that mean that if I apply just 2 months in advance my intended travel date I can’t do it? Also, I see you tell other people in your answers to go back to the FAQs. Would that take a lot of your time to just briefly answer a question for us rather than tossing it back to us? I mean, I’ve been looking and nowhere I saw the question I asked so that’s why i did it. Also if you don’t mind answering, the 30 days expiry date is from the intended date of travel and not from the time you get approved and receive your passport stamped in the mail am I right? Thanks in advance.

        1. Normally you need to be able to reside in the country for a minimum of six months. Maybe that doesn’t apply as you are a citizen.

          “Would that take a lot of your time to just briefly answer a question for us rather than tossing it back to us?”

          Yes, actually, because I get the same questions on a daily basis — hence why they are on a frequently asked questions page. Why should I waste my time on people who don’t make the effort to read things properly or do their own research when I already spent a lot of my FREE time pulling together information from various sources to make the answers as clear as possible and updating it regularly? If I can find the answers, you can too. I don’t have some special search engine that gives me the answers. I read things carefully and draw conclusions, which you, and anyone reading this, also likely has the capacity to do.

          I also specifically state that I don’t give advice on exceptional cases, which yours seems to be, so…. you should probably fire up that email account and ask an official.

  26. Hello Alyssa!

    I found your articles extremely helpful during the application process, I just got an email today saying my documents have been dispatched. No news regarding if it was accepted or declined, is this common practice?

    I had read elsewhere that this is has happened, but also for others they got feedback saying they were accepted.
    Now, the real question is. If they didn’t say it was declined, was I accepted? Or is it just a waiting game.

    Thank you so much!

  27. Hello,
    Do I find out a response about the visa before going to the VFS Global appointment and getting the biometrics done or is the visa approved after biometrics is done?

  28. Hey Alyssa!

    I have been filling out an online application for UK Youth Mobiliva Visa (I am Canadian) – and noticed I have to change the passport # and my entry date since there have been some changes to them.
    I am at its final ‘Pay’ stage after I paid for the health insurance. Looks like it no longer lets me edit the above.. and not sure how I can even cancel/restart the application online.

    Do you know anything about this? Much appreciated in advance.

  29. Hello Alyssa,

    Ive been approved for a two year Tier 5 UK Visa, my entry date on my application is August 30th. I know I need to enter the country within 30 days of my intended entry date but circumstances have changed and I may not be able to enter within 30 days. Is it possible to change my entry date?



  30. Hi Alyssa,

    I sent you a previous question but I realize it wasn’t very clear so i’m going to try again…. Myself and my partner are planning on moving to England in 2019. I have dual citizenship but he does not so he needs a visa. He turns 31 on September 10th 2018 so we are getting in just under the wire. I guess I have 2 questions
    1) Does the start date need to be before he turns 31? i.e. can we make the start date November 2018.
    2) If not (I suspect we can’t), if we put a start/arrival date of September 1st,… can we arrive by January 15th without issue (under the 6 months)

    Thanks in advance,

  31. Hi,

    Do you know of any companies that will help us apply for this visa? We are in a unique situation as my partner turns 31 in September of this year. I’m not sure how that works with the travel/arrival dates. I.e. if we apply b4 he turns 31, can we still travel by January 2019… In short i’m very confused


    1. There’s literally nothing to be confused about if you’ve read the posts and taken the time to understand them because your situation is not unique. Literally dozens of people have been in the same circumstance and commented on these posts. You can Google the companies.

  32. Dear Alyssa,

    Thank you for this really helpful website!

    I’ve had my YMS visa approved and my start date will be Sep 25th. I know there’s an answer above for entering UK prior before the start date, but my situation is a little different so I’m hoping that you can answer some of my questions. Thank you!

    I’m holding a Taiwanese passport and we have visa wavier for traveling to UK as tourist under 6 months. Now I’m planning to arrive in London 3-4 weeks prior to my YMS visa start date (Sep 25th) in order to look for flats, getting around the area I’d like to live and work in the future and visiting my friends. Then I plan on leaving London for Paris either by plane or train before my YMS starts (around Sep 17th) to visit the friend who lives there and do some traveling and then re-enter UK (London) on the date of YMS starts (Sept 25th) by plane as I think re-entering through the UK immigration at the airport would be more appropriate to activate my YMS visa (or it has the same validity by train too? ) .

    So I’m wondering:

    1) Is it ok if I arrive earlier for almost a month (3-4 weeks) prior to my YMS start date as a tourist? If so, I’ll book the flight/train tickets for my leave and re-entering dates to prove it to the UK immigration officer.

    2) If I can arrive early as a tourist, besides my leave and re-enter plane/train tickets, do I need to provide other documents such as bank statement?

    3) For leaving London for Paris before my YMS start date, does it matter if I travel by plane or train Or would it be better if I just leave and re-enter London all by the plane?

    4) When I re-enter UK on the date of my YMS starts, do I still need to bring the same bank statement that I included in my submitting documents when I applied for YMS to show it to the UK immigration officer?

    5) If I want to arrive UK prior to YMS start date as a tourist, is it ok if I also tell the UK immigration officer that I hope to have some job interviews first (besides telling them I want to look for flats and visiting friends), so I won’t spend too much time on looking for jobs after my YMS visa starts?

    Sorry if I asked a lot and thank you in advance for answering my questions. I’m kind of stressing as the time is getting close and I know I need to book the flight tickets and everything asap.

    1. Okay, I’ve answered questions just like these before and you’ll get a better one if you just read through the comments………

      1) Yes. 2) Maybe. 3) No. 4) No. 5) Just don’t tell them shit they don’t ask and if they do ask tell the truth.

      But I’m pretty sure I’ve made it clear somewhere that you no longer need to leave and come back if you arrive beforehand, because of the BRP card. You simply will not be able to start working.

  33. Is it possible to change the location for picking up the BRP? I’ve been approved for my Tier 5 Visa, but I put a postcode in Cambridge where my sister lives. I’m actually going to be staying in Kent, so I’d like to pick up my BRP from the post office there instead of having to travel to Cambridge for it. Any idea how to arrange this? Should I just call the original post office and get them to forward it down to Kent for me?

  34. Hi Alyssa,

    My Tier 5 visa starts Sept 1st. However I want to arrive two weeks earlier to London (Aug 18th) in order to look for a flat in person. I would enter London as a tourist (I’m Canadian). A couple of questions here:

    1) Could UK immigration deny me entry because i’m arriving before my visa start date?
    2) Is this a valid reason to tell the UK immigration officer?
    3) I read some scary things in other forums saying if I arrive earlier than my UK visa start date I pose the risk that the UK immigration may revoke my visa altogether. Is this true?

    I would like to thank you in advance for answering these questions and for putting together this resourceful website and YMS handbook! Both were super helpful during my application and as well inspirational!

    1. 1) Yes – if they find evidence you intend to start working or otherwise breach the terms of your tourist visa.
      2) Yes. The truth is always valid when it comes to border security.
      3) Not unless they find evidence you misrepresented information on your visa application.

      Hope that helps!

      1. Hi Alyssa. Thanks for the quick response. I have some follow-up questions.

        Am I allowed to search for a flat if I’m in the UK as a tourist?
        Do you think UK immigration would have an issue with me arriving early to flat search?
        Would I have to exit and re-enter the UK on my visa start date?

        1. Yes
          Only if they find evidence of an intent start working prior to the validity dates of your visa
          Depends how early you arrive, but your BRP card may not be ready for pick up.

  35. Hi Alyssa,

    I’m struggling because I don’t have a UK address yet, i read your FAQ but I plan to look for a job before I get to the UK with my visa and therefore will be looking for a place depending on where/if I can find a job. I don’t want to book something or just put an address on my application if I am not sure I will be staying in that area as I am afraid it will cause issues later on. Would it be ok to put “to be determined” on the address section of the Visa application or do you suggest just putting in an address even if I don’t know that I will be staying in that area?


    1. No – just put an address of a hotel in the city/town you’ll be living in. You can change the BRP pick up location later.

  36. Hi Alyssa, do you have any advice re-entering the UK as a tourist AFTER your tier 5 visa has come to an end? My visa ended in April 2018 but I left earlier due to personal reasons which means I was out of the country for 7 months. I have read mixed reviews and that the possibility of being rejected re-entry as a former visa holder is high. Please let me know if you have personal experience THANKS X (I’m canadian)

    1. I’ve been back several times to visit my partner’s family. The possibility is no higher than usual. As long as you can show you have a return flight, sufficient funds to support your stay, they find no evidence of an intention to do anything besides visiting, and you have no history of overstaying, you should have no problem.

  37. Hi Alyssa!

    I am a Canadian citizen and I am planning on moving to the UK with the Tier 5 Visa in the end of July.
    I am currently travelling around Asia and I was working in Australia for the past year.

    I know I have to go back to Canada to do my biometric (unfortunatly) so I booked my flight in Toronto.

    I am really confused about the bank statement though. I have the fund in my Australian saving account. They can give me a bank statements and also a letter confirming that I have the fund in my account. But they will not be stamped or original since I will have to print them out…

    I might be able to ask them to stamped it and send it back to me via email but I won’t be able to have an original copy. Do you think it will still work?
    Thank you so much for your help!

    1. Your documents should meet the guidelines outlined in the Guidance Document.
      If you were working in Australia for more than 6 months and your visa was still valid, you could have done it there.
      Good luck!

  38. Hi Alyssa,

    I’m confused about the planned emoymemt question. I don’t have a job in the UK so what do I write in the question.

      1. I recently applied for this Visa (still waiting on my in person meeting) and was asked this same question. The visa application I selected was Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme (migrant worker). Did any of you get an answer on what we were supposed to put in this section? It also asked for projected income.

        1. Hi! What did you end up responding to this question? I also do not have a sponsor or projected income. Thanks!

          1. I also just came across this question and was a little unsure what to put here? Did anyone figure out a good answer to this?


          2. Hi!

            Did you receive an answer to this question?? I’m experiencing the same thing!


  39. Hi Alyssa,
    I applied and got approved for the YMS, however Im unable to go during my intended travel date due to an sudden family emergency. I noticed you put “if you dont enter the UK you can re-apply”? Do you know if this still holds true? I called UK.GOV and they said you can only apply for the visa once, and if your approved you cant re-apply.


    1. Hi Dee,

      Sorry to hear that. That used to be the case, but I have a suspicion that may have changed with the introduction of the BRP card. With that said, a thorough read of the eligibility section of the guidance document says that to be eligible, the applicant “must not have spent time in the UK” on the visa. That says to me that as long as you don’t enter the UK on the YMS visa, you would be eligible to receive another. Just be sure to cancel your visa and BRP card collection if you decide not to go. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help!

  40. Hi Alyssa,

    I’m a Canadian citizen who applied for my YMS visa outside of Canada. For some unknown reason, my visa has still not arrived after 15 working days, and so my stated “intended date of travel” has now passed. I read somewhere online that they consider your “intended date of travel” as the start date of your visa and your end date as exactly two years from that date. However, as I have still not received my visa after my intended date of travel, I’m confused as to when my visa will officially begin – would they a) provide me with a later date that they’ve deemed reasonable; or b) still use my original intended date of travel as the start date? I hope it’s not the latter as that would mean I end up getting a lot less than two years there…


    1. Sorry, I completely forgot to say thank you at the end of my question, but thank you in advance!!


    2. Hi Jan, you didn’t apply for the visa far enough in advance and you’ll just have to wait and see. Let us know what happens!

  41. Hi 🙂

    I’m Susan,

    I’m a very stressed and confused about one factor of applying based on my age. Also, I really want to thank you for this site. It is extremely helpful!

    I’m 30 turning 31 on May 14th. I know I must apply before I turn 31. I know that once I apply I have six months from the date of my application to move.

    The information I’m confused about and can’t find an answer to is whether I have to be in London before I’m 31 to pick up the documents (not sure what they’re called) or if I can come while I’m 31 on my intended date of arrival (within six months).

    Please help! 🙁

      1. “Age 18-30 (you can apply at 17, but you must be 18 on or before the visa start date; you can move to UK at 31, as long as you were 30 on the date of the application)”

        Thank you for your speedy response.

        I do understand I can move when I’m 31, but I’ve been told there’s paper work I need to pick up before I turn 31 and then can move within the six time frame.

        Is there any truth to that or is it something you haven’t heard of?

        My friend did the visa two years ago at the age of 30 and said she had to come to London before she turned 31 to do so.

        Thank you again,

  42. does anyone know about travelling within the EU (Schengen) countries on the Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa? Can I leave the UK to travel, and for up to how long, and are there restrictions on where I can go? I haven’t been able to find much information on this, aside from some Aussie posts that say you can travel outside of the UK for up to 90 days on the Tier 5 (which I assume would be the same for Canadians)… but would I be allowed to hypothetically move to France for a couple of months? Or visit Morocco for a weekend? What are the restrictions on movement or are there any? Or does it go back to your Canadian passport then…

    Super confused : x

    Any clarification would be helpful as I’m not sure where to go for answers


    1. You can go wherever your passport allows within its restrictions. Yes, you can go to France for two months but you can’t work there. You can’t exceed 90 days in the Schengen Zone. The YMS visa as multiple entry so you can go where you like.

      1. thanks! but if you go somewhere and stay there ( in the Schengen Zone ) for 90 days, can you come back again in like, 2-3 weeks… , or do you have to wait 90 days again before you re-enter / or is the multiple entry visa flexible enough to allow as many entries regardless of how long they are?
        and can you open a bank account there as a UK Tier 5er, like, so if a British person could open a bank account there as an EU national, could you open a bank account there as someone who’s technically in the UK for 2 years (would the same rights be extended to a Canadian in the UK) that is…

        also, my friend from NZ said it was up to 6 months , do you know where I could find the fineprint on this ? best *

        1. You can only spend 90 days in the Schengen Area in a period of 180 days. If you’re out 2 weeks, then you can go back for 2 weeks, not another 90 days. Multiple entry applies to UK only. It would depend on the bank and country. What is 6 months?

          1. oh, that you could stay out for 6 months (180 days in another country/travelling around Europe as opposed to 90 basically) — just a longer extended stay outside of the UK versus the 90 out of 180..

            also, I think I remember reading something on your blog about applying for an Australian working holiday while still on a UK work holiday visa (tier 5 youth), so that you could automatically go to Aus after the UK (not going back to Canada at all)..

            hypothetically, would this mean..say you went to France for 2 months, and decided you wanted to stay in France, could you apply for the work holiday visa in France, and transfer your UK to a France work holiday…like if you still had x amount of time remaining on your UK tier 5 visa, could you switch over to another tier 5, for another country…

  43. Hello!!! After submitting I realized my bank statement doesn’t look official! TD for some reason didn’t have letterhead so they wrote me a letter and stamped it but DIDN’T put the account number on it! I also did a screenshot of my own online banking but didn’t get it stamped. WHAT IF I GET REJECTED BECAUSE OF THAT?

    1. Then you’ll have to resubmit it… Refer to this FAQ: I think I made a mistake with my youth mobility visa application, what do I do?

  44. Hi Alyssa, is there anything you need to do once you’ve finished the two year visa in the uk and come home?

    1. Nope. Just give HMRC a call and let them know you’re leaving or try to get email notifications because I have seen instances of people having to pay back taxes after they left (of course you don’t have to pay them – as in no one will chase you up – but if you ever plan to go back for working or living, then you might want to anyway).

  45. Hi Alyssa,

    Thank you for posting this valuable information. I am turning 31 in June 2018. I just want to clarify that I will still be eligible to apply for visa up until my 31st birthday. Also, does this mean that I have to complete the application, pay for the fees and attend the appointment all before my 31st birthday or can my appointment be after?

    Thanks again

    1. Yes, yes, yes, no you can do the appointment after your birthday.

      Just a question, not just directed at you: Why are you all waiting until the last minute though?

      1. Thanks for your reply!

        I don’t plan to move until the end of the year and with the six month rule, I figured I can apply in May so that I can maximize the full 24 months, of the visa (assuming everything gets approved)

  46. Hi

    I’ve applied for the Tier 5 YMS. I received an email which said my application was successful and the passport was returned to me, however the visa is only valid for 6 months! Is this a mistake at their end as i only applied with the understanding it was for 2 years.

    1. Hi Sam, The visa in your passport is only valid for entry to the UK. You have to collect your BRP card which will have the full validity time.

  47. Hi,

    I’m applying at the VFS Global office in Toronto ~ I started my application months ago and some of the info on it has now changed and I was wondering if they would be able to change that at the appointment. I’m mainly concerned about the address to which they mail me my passport as I live in Montreal but I am flying out of Toronto and it would be really inconvenient to have to go back to Montreal to pick up my passport.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.