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Visas for Graduation

The Awards & Ceremonies team cannot issue letters for visa purposes or provide visa-related advice. However, the Student Immigration and Compliance team can provide you with information and guidance regarding the appropriate visa to attend the Graduation Ceremony, as well as information on how to invite family/friends.

The information below is supplied by the Immigration Service Team which we hope you find useful. If you require further advice, please visit their Information Hub for GraduationLink opens in a new window. If you require further visa related advice, please contact the Student Immigration & Compliance team directly using their online formLink opens in a new window.

Visa for Yourself - January 2023 Graduands

If you currently hold a valid Warwick Student Visa (previously Tier 4) which is sponsored by the University of Warwick or have applied for or received a Graduate route visa, AND you will remain in the UK until the date of your graduation ceremony, then you are fine to remain in the UK (and attend your graduation ceremony) prior to your visa expiry date.

If you currently hold a valid Warwick Student Visa (previously Tier 4) which is sponsored by the University of Warwick, AND you have left the UK but will return to the UK for your graduation ceremony, we have been assured by the Home Office UKVI Policy Team that the Border Force officers have been briefed that attending the graduation ceremony is a permitted activity for students who have completed their course successfully, hold a valid Warwick Student Visa (previously Tier 4) and wish to return to the UK for the purpose of attending their graduation ceremony. If you fall into this category, you no longer need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa (although you can if you wish to). However, please note that the Border Force officials retain the right to establish that you are genuinely coming back to the UK to do what you said you would, and so it is important that you have sufficient evidence in your hand luggage in case you are asked (for example, an email sent from the Awards and Ceremonies Team confirming your registration; an email from professional services or your academic department confirming you have passed your degree; a return ticket to your home country after the graduation ceremony etc). If you have already received a Graduate Route visa, you may use this to travel to the UK and attend your degree ceremony too.

If you do not have a valid Warwick Student Visa (previously Tier 4) or a Graduate route visa, you should apply for a ‘Standard Visitor Visa’. You should apply for your Standard Visitor Visas no earlier than 3 months before your graduation ceremony. To do so you should request a Student Status LetterLink opens in a new window, and include in your visa application a print-out of the email from the Awards and Ceremonies Team which confirms that you have been invited to attend the graduation ceremony, and a print-out of the email from professional services/your academic department that you have passed your degree. Please refer to this webpageLink opens in a new window for more information as to what other documents you may need to provide for this visa application.

Visa for your Family/Friends - January 2023 Graduands

If you intend to invite parents/friends to attend the graduation ceremony, they will usually need a ‘Standard Visitor Visa’. You should provide your guest with a Student Status LetterLink opens in a new window, and a print-out of the email from the Awards and Ceremonies Team which confirms that you have been invited to attend the graduation ceremony.

You will also need to write an invitation letter. A sample invitation letter which you can tailor to invite your family/friends can be found on this websiteLink opens in a new window (scroll down the page to Section 10 for a copy of the 'sample invitation letter'), as well as detailed information about applying for a Standard Visitor Visa.

Visa for Yourself - January 2022 Graduates

Your current Warwick Student Visa (previously Tier 4) should have now expired unless you have secured a new Student visa for a new course. You may have applied for or received a Graduate route visa following the official conferral of your degree some time ago.

If you have existing immigration permission (including a valid Student visa, a Graduate route visa or any other visa which allows you to remain in the UK), then you are fine to remain in the UK or travel to the UK to attend your graduation ceremony prior to your current visa expiry date.

If you do not have existing immigration permission to remain or travel to the UK, you should apply for a ‘Standard Visitor Visa’. You should apply for your Standard Visitor Visa no earlier than 3 months before your graduation ceremony. To do so you should request a Confirmation of Award LetterLink opens in a new windowLink opens in a new window and include in your visa application along with a print-out of the email from the Awards and Ceremonies Team which confirms that you have been invited to attend the graduation ceremony. Please refer to this webpageLink opens in a new windowLink opens in a new window for more information as to what other documents you may need to provide for this visa application.

Visa for your Family/Friends - January 2022 Graduands

If you intend to invite parents/friends to attend the graduation ceremony, they will usually need a ‘Standard Visitor Visa’. You should provide your guest with a Confirmation of Award LetterLink opens in a new windowLink opens in a new window and a print-out of the email from the Awards and Ceremonies Team which confirms that you have been invited to attend the graduation ceremony.

You will also need to write an invitation letter. A sample invitation letter which you can tailor to invite your family/friends can be found on this websiteLink opens in a new windowLink opens in a new window (scroll down the page to Section 10 for a copy of the 'sample invitation letter'), as well as detailed information about applying for a Standard Visitor Visa.

COVID-19 Travel Rules and Guidance

If you are travelling from outside of the UK, check the latest UK government rules and guidanceLink opens in a new window for arriving in England from another country..