How To Get Scotland Visa?
This was my first time to UK,so obviously I wasn't the lucky few with the stamped UK visa already.And for those who are not aware of the visa process to Scotland,the below might just help you out.For Scotland,you need UK visa.The below isn't the official requirement(as what I have heard is that keeps changing) but for someone genuine so that the chances of rejection are minimum.The below is based on my own personal experience and for a peek-a-boo to my recent escapade to Scotland,watch the video:
With not more than 18 days in hand,with two holidays in between my chances of getting a visa stamped for Scotland was very dicey.Visa ain't the easiest procedures as are the job interviews but in both cases they are essential.No body would want thieves in their country or terrorists,so they do their job and we do ours.It takes 15 working days for 80% visas to get processed as per the current trend on visitor visa and I got my visa on the 15th day.Guidance to visa processing time depending on your place of application is written here Visa Processing Time UKBA
Please do not book your flights prior as there might be delays in visa processing,also if you book your flights in advance make sure they are refundable.Check the calender of non working days before you apply and the list is
List of non-working holidays
FOR ALL INFORMATION AND UPDATES ON UK VISA
Check the UKBA website for every information you would need or require,its self explanatory and very well written
Visas and Immigration
British High Commision Official
1)Situation 1: Single,First Time,UK Visit,Category: Visitor,More than 20 working days in hand.
/*Fill the correct information every time in your visa application,as much as possible attach the original documents,no worries they'll be returned.For documents which you think is very important for them,attach a xerox with the original*/
a)Fill the form in the UKBA website: Save.Fill the form each and every column.Do not submit the first time,and before rechecking it again.
Visa for general visitor
Read the directions and the instructions properly.You can also check the guidance notes on the right hand site of the toolbar in the page.
b)Write a detailed letter addressing to the nearest British embassy explaining why would you want to go to UK,take a print,with your signature. Eg:
The British Embassy,
c)Print a no-objection certificate(NOC)
-If you are working,the certificate has to be printed on the company's letterhead addressing the british embassy
-If you are not working,the certificate has to be approved by your parents addressing the british embassy
d)Take a photo as per Visa_Photo_Guidance, please note that this is very important point we ignore which might be reason for delays or rejection in future
e)Financial proof(all needs to be attached)
- IT returns of last 3 years
- Pay slips of last 6 months
- Bank statements
This isn't mentioned anywhere but you need to have a proof of minimum of 1.5-2 lakhs or more depending on your duration of stay in your account,not recently deposited or transferred. If someone is sponsoring your trip you need to attach all the required documents of his/her as well along with.
f)Address proof - Voter's ID,Driving License etc for current address proof.If you do not have,get a address proof certificate from your company.If you have adhar card,that also works.
g)Letter from your sponsor.
h)Letter of your confirmed hotel reservation(if you have booked,I suggest you should,as this could be proof that you can afford at least your stay).Please book from pay when you arrive sites like booking.com so that if your visa is rejected or delayed you can easily cancel the reservation.
e)Birth certificate,Class x certificate
And any other document which you think would make your application strong.Once you have taken the printouts and got all originals,submit the above application online.Choose a suitable date for appointment and bio-metrics.
2)Situation 2: Married,First Time,UK Visit,Category: Visitor,More than 20 working days.
a)You need to have original marriage certificate along with the above.
b)In case you are working - a NOC from office
In case you are not working - a NOC from your husband
If you can,get both :)
3)Situation 3: If less than 17 working days
If you do not have time to do research on the website,or you are unsure on how to do on your own
You can take help of Thomas Cook Visa Services.Make sure,you attend the office personally,as visa requests on mail are not responded back quick most of the time.Thomas cook can only guide you in the visa application process,but in no way can influence or guarantee the rejection or acceptance of the visa.
Track Your Visa Application
You can either request the vfs for the email and sms application status notification during your application submission or track it online here:
Visa Application Tracker
How To Reach Scotland?
Scotland has four main airports; Glasgow, Glasgow Prestwick, Edinburgh and Aberdeen, plus many regional airports spread across the country in Dundee, Inverness, Outer Hebrides, Orkney and Shetland.There are many carriers from India like Air France,KLM,Air India,Turkish Airlines to name a few to Glasgow and Edinburgh.However,it would roughly cost around 60 - 70 k return,depending on how early you book the flights.
The Plane Weigh = Pounds more?
An interesting topic of discussion.How much should you carry the luggage?For most of the carriers it is 20 kgs as check-in luggage overseas.But as Indians we tend to shop more,and we pack more.And for me since I am a shopoholica,I bought tops and earrings from the many shopping centers in Edinburgh and you wouldn't believe I had to carry on like 26 kgs back in India.So well there it goes
-Pack 15 kgs or less as Check in,and a handy backpack as the carry on luggage if you are travelling for 10 days or more
-Travelling for 5-6 days,just carry a small check-in baggage
-For most of the international carriers,the cost of extra baggage is high.I had to pay 40 pounds for the extra 5 kgs .I didn't even shop for 40 pounds anywhere.I could have got a cool backpack or may be a dress.
-If you see that the weight is 22-25 kgs,shift the excess baggage to your carry on luggage to reduce cost
-Buy a heavy jacket for European winters,a pair of tights,socks,shoes, winter wear,umbrella(for scotland,rains almost everyday)
-Keep a travel adaptor with different plug-ins.
-Do not iron and keep your clothes,roll them into tiny bits and press them in.Most of the hotels will have an iron box or even if they don't if you are a backpacker,this shouldn't matter
-Get synthetic clothes for Europe,as they are less likely to form crease even if unironed.
-If you have weighing machine at home,please weigh your box to avoid inconvenience at the airport
The Currency Exchange
The currency of UK is pound.
1 Pound = 82 Rupees (current rate)
To know the current exchange rate
Google 1 pound = rs
To convert the money
Avoid the airport counters as the exchange rate is a little lower than the usual
You can try Centrum or other authorized foreign exchange counters within your city for better exchange rate
The Travel Card
A convenient alternative to cash.Split your expenditure into half or 3/4 and deposit the maximum amount in the travel card.Advantage -it acts as your debit card overseas.So you need not always carry the hard cash which is anyways not advisable.You can get it from any exchange counters.
Travelling Solo or Travel in a group?
Depends.Travelling solo gives a feeling of independence and travelling in a group makes you meet new people and let you get to know them close.Being a women I have done them both,and at the end of the day,I would suggest whatever suits you.I would write an article on this very shortly on why the world is not as unsafe as It is thought to be,and why you need not always carry a pepper spray.Write in your comments on what way you prefer to travel and why?Hmm..I am sure this is gonna be an interesting topic.