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Quick Start Guide: Student Visas for EU/EEA/Swiss Nationals

If you're an EEA/EU/Swiss national, were not living in the UK before 31 December 2020 (or are not eligible for the EU Settlement Scheme), you'll need a UK Immigration Status that permits study before you can enrol on your course.

The University is required to check that you have this prior to you starting to study with us.

For most students whose courses are longer than 6 months, this means applying for a Student Visa.

You need to do this before coming to the UK, unless you already have a UK immigration status which permits you to switch into the Student Route.

However, this page will give you a simplified overview of:

    1. Where to find information on making your application, and how your application will work (if you have a biometric passport)
    2. What you will get when your visa is granted
    3. How to use your student visa to enter the UK
    4. How to use your student visa to complete your enrolment at Warwick
    5. How to access your Digital status and keep it updated (if you require a share code, or if you receive a new passport)

The information on this page applies to most EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals who have passports with a Biometric Chip: Biometric Chip Symbol



If your passport doesn't have a biometric chip, or you have already applied for your student visa and were told to visit a Visa Application Centre in-person, your visa will be granted in a similar way to nationals of countries outside of the EEA/EU, so our main guidance will be more relevant to you.


Step 1: Apply for your Student Visa

Once you've submitted, paid the fees, and paid the Immigration Health Surcharge for your application, it normally takes 3 weeks for the UKVI to make a decision.

Step 2: Receiving your Visa - what you'll get and what you need to do

  • If the UKVI grants your student visa, you will be given a Digital Immigration Status. The Home Office provides guidance about what this is here.
  • This means you won't receive any "physical" documentation for your visa. You will not receive a "BRP" (Biometric Residence Permit), although you may hear this mentioned by other students from other parts of the world, who do not have a "digital status".
  • However, you will receive an email from the UKVI with details of your immigration permission, including:

- The start and end dates of your student visa
- The conditions of your immigration permission (what you can and cannot do whilst in the UK)
- That your sponsor is the University of Warwick, and the Course you will be studying


Example Decision Email

  • As soon as you receive your email, check that your visa is the correct length, and check that the name of your Sponsor (University of Warwick) and course are correct, as you will need to act quickly if a mistake has been made

Step 3: Entering the UK

  • Your digital status is linked to your passport. This means that you will not be required to show any other document to the Border Officer in order to prove your immigration status when entering the UK. However, if you have received a new passport since applying for your visa, you must update your UKVI account with this new document before travelling.
  • We also recommend having a copy of your decision email available to show the Border Officer if required
  • Check the university's, and the government's guidance on entering the UK carefully, particularly to understand any general restrictions which may apply to you when you travel.
  • IMPORTANT: When travelling to the UK for the first time using your visa, it is vital that you enter the UK:
    - AFTER your Visa Start Date (check your decision email)
    and
    - BEFORE the "Latest Start Date" provided to you by the University (check your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies, CAS, email)
    (if you enter the UK on a date outside of this, you may be denied entry to the UK, or be unable to start your course until you leave the UK and re-enter in the correct period to "activate" your student visa)
  • It is very important that you retain evidence of your entry to the UK. If you use an "e-gate" to enter the UK, you must retain your boarding pass to use for your enrolment.

Step 4: Using your Visa to Complete Enrolment at Warwick

  • You will receive an invitation to complete "Course Registration" 4-6 weeks before your course start date, or within a week of you accepting your unconditional offer, whichever is later. You should only complete "Course Registration" once you have received your visa - please also wait around 1-2 working days following the email from the UKVI, to allow our systems to update to reflect this.
  • You will be asked for your passport and visa details. Select the visa type:
    - Warwick Student Visa - Applied Overseas (if you applied for your visa outside of the UK)
    - Warwick Student Visa - Applied in the UK (if you applied for your visa inside of the UK)
  • As evidence of your immigration permission, you must provide:
    - Your current valid passport
    AND
    - A copy of the UKVI decision email you received when your visa was granted
    AND
    - A PDF copy of a "share code", which allows the University to digitally verify your immigration status. To obtain this:
    1. Go to the "View and Prove Immigration Status" government webpage, and complete your personal details
    2. You will be presented with the option to choose the "purpose" of your share code. Select "something else"
    3. Download the PDF file
  • Once you have entered the UK you must also provide evidence of your entry - either the stamp in your passport, or your boarding pass - by uploading this to your Enrolment Dashboard
  • Once you have completed all of the above, the University will verify your documents, and you will be fully enrolled.

If you have any questions about the enrolment process, please visit the FAQs pages.

Step 5: How to access your digital status and keep it updated (share code/ new passport)

Access your digital status

Once your visa is granted, you can access your digital status or request a Shade code (so that other people can check your digital status) by following these steps:

  • Visit https://www.gov.uk/view-prove-immigration-status.
  • Fill in your personal details.
  • You will then have access to your digital status. Print a .pdf or a hard copy before travelling to the UK.
  • Click ‘Prove your status’, then ‘get share code’.
  • Choose the purpose of share code. Please select "something else" if the University is asking you for a Share code.
  • You will then be given a share code.
  • Download the .pdf and provide the share code to the requester.

Update your Digital status (for example, if you have a new passport)

If your personal details have changed, especially if you are going to use a different EU ID or passport to travel to the UK (instead of the one you used to apply for your Student Visa), remember to update the UKVI via this link at least a few weeks before the date you travel:

https://www.gov.uk/update-uk-visas-immigration-account-details.

If you are unable to do so before you travel to the UK, then travel with both documents.

Step 6: Any other actions once My Student visa is granted:

If you are not intending to undertake any work on your Student Visa:


Please see the guidance on the following link to see if you are eligible for an IHS Reimbursement:


Student Immigration | EU IHS Payments .


Immigration Responsibilities:


Please see the guidance on the following link and read the guidance provided:


Student Immigration | Immigration Responsibilities - Yours and Ours .


Current Students:


Please see the FAQs guidance on the following link:


Student Immigration | I am a current student .