Sample Letter for UK Tourist Visa Application (2019 Cover Letter Template)

In this article, we are going to discuss how you can write your UK visitor visa supporting letter in 2019.

The below template/sample letter for tourist visa applications can be used for countries other than the UK.

This is because your goal is going to be the same whether you are applying for a UK, US, Canadian or a tourist visa for another country – to convince the person deciding your application that you will return to your home country and not overstay.

This is one of the most helpful things that you can do to increase your chances of a successful UK visitor visa application.

After all, the Home Office caseworkers are very suspicious people and you should do everything that you can to persuade them that you are a ‘genuine’ and ‘credible’ visitor.

There is no one set letter template that can be effectively used for all UK visitor visa applications since every application is different and unique to your own individual circumstances.

There are different aspects that your visit visa supporting letter should discuss and we will discuss each of them in turn:

  • An introduction/summary of your visit visa application
  • List of documents that you are including
  • The purpose of your visit
  • Why you will not overstay your UK visa
  • The dependants that you will be applying with (if any)
  • Your ability to adequately maintain yourself during your UK visit
  • Whether your sponsor meets the sponsor requirements (if you have one)
  • Confirmation that you are not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK your main home (if relevant)
  • Potential weaknesses in your application
  • Contact details of other relevant persons

SUB-HEADING NUMBER 1

Introduction/Summary

My name is [NAME] and I am [NATIONALITY]. I am applying from [COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE] and I am applying for a standard [6 month/2 year/5 year/10 year] UK visitor visa.

In discussing that I am a genuine and credible UK visitor visa, this letter will cover:

  • A list of the supporting documents that have been submitted alongside this supporting letter
  • The purpose of my visit
  • Reasons why I will comply with the terms of the visa and why I will not overstay
  • Information relating to dependants applying with me (delete if appropriate)
  • My ability to adequately maintain myself [and any dependants (if relevant)] during intended UK trip
  • Information relating to my sponsor (delete if appropriate)
  • Why I am not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK my main home [(if relevant)]
  • Potential perceived weaknesses in my application
  • Contact details of other relevant persons you may wish to contact

Why is this section important?

This section provides a clear outline of the things that Home Office caseworkers are most interested in.

By providing a clear and relevant structure, you are immediately letting the Home Office caseworker know that you have a good understanding of the Immigration Rules as they apply to visitor visas.

It also makes it easier for the Home Office caseworker to read. The clearer and easier you make it for the Home Office caseworker, the happier that they will be.

Ultimately, the happier the Home Office caseworker is, the greater chance there is of your UK visitor visa being granted!


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 2

List of included documents

In support of my UK visitor visa application, I have included the following documents:

Appendix Document
1 My passport copies
2 My letter of support
3 My sponsor’s letter of support

Why is this section important?

REASON #1

The Home Office tend to lose documents quite often, unfortunately.

By stating that you list a certain documents, the Home Office caseworker will then know that the document may have indeed been lost on the way.

This increases the likelihood of the Home Office caseworker getting into contact and asking for the missing document.

REASON #2

By having something similar to the above table, you again increase the clarity and ease of reading for this cover letter.

The Home Office caseworker will be able to refer to this table to quickly identify the relevant document when considering your application and it will again provide good impression.

This will set your application apart from the thousands of UK visit visa applications that are submitting in a very messy and unstructured way!


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 3

The purpose of my visit

The main purpose of my visit is to [INSERT ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY].

[Discuss what you intend to do in the UK in more detail here]

I am fully aware of the permitted and prohibited activities found in Immigration Rules Appendix V: visitor rules.

[If you intend to volunteer in the UK, clarify the fact that the volunteering is for a registered charity and the expected duration of your volunteering (being no longer than 30 days in total). Also emphasise that volunteering is not the main purpose of your visit.] [If you intend to do business activities in the UK, clarify that these are permitted activities (such as attending seminars, conferences, meets and interviews] [Provide a detailed itinerary here. There is no one set way to do this. We have provided two examples below that you can follow]

Example Itinerary #1

The main purpose of my visit is to attend my niece’s university graduation.

The following is my itinerary and includes the likely costings of the UK visit:

23rd May (Day 1)

Hopefully, I will be flying to London Heathrow from Bangkok, Thailand. As evidenced by the attached return flight tickets and return flight ticket receipts (Appendix 8 and 9), the cost of return of this flight is £884.

24th May (Day 2)

I will be picked up at the London Heathrow by my sister and will stay at her accommodation, 22b Iverson Road, London, NW6 2HE for two nights.

Please see the attached letter of support from my sister, which has been labelled Appendix 11.

Whilst I expect that I will spend around £30 on airport food, I will incur no costs for accommodation.

25th May (Day 3)

I will attend my niece’s graduation on this day, which is the main purpose of my trip to the UK.

The graduation is taking place at the University of Leeds campus.

We will travel from my niece’s accommodation in London to the University of Leeds by train, the expected cost of which is £80 for a return train ticket (see Appendix 13).

In support of these plans, please see the attached letter from my niece’s university (Appendix 5), confirmation of my niece’s graduation (Appendix 4) and the letter of support from my niece (Appendix 7).

Since the graduation is scheduled to finish at 11.30am, this will give us plenty time to enjoy a nice meal at our favourite restaurant, ‘Almost Famous’ in Leeds.  I will have £50 set aside for this meal.

Once we have arrived back in London, I will again stay at my sister’s accommodation, which will mean that I will incur no extra costs with regards to accommodation.

26th May (Day 4)

My last day is expected to start early in the morning as my sister will drive me to London Heathrow in time for my 8am flight back to Bangkok.

I have set aside £30 for food and drink at the airport.

The total expected cost for this trip is therefore £190 for my 4-day trip, not including the return flight tickets that I have already paid £884 for.

In light of my personal savings account at Appendix 17 that shows savings of £12,200 (as converted by oanda.com), it is therefore clear that I can adequately provide for myself during my 4-day visit to the UK.

Example Itinerary #2:

The main purpose of my visit is to attend my niece’s university graduation.

The following is my itinerary and includes the likely costings of the UK visit:

DATE

CITY

ACTIVITY

MAIN COSTS

23rd May 2020 Bangkok (Thailand) & London (UK) Departing from Bangkok, Thailand at 10pm UTC+07:00. The return flight cost £884 (see Appendix 8 and 9).

£0 on accommodation.

24th May 2020 London (UK) Arriving at London Heathrow. No further costs spent on accommodation or travel.

I will be getting picked up by my sister who I will stay with at 22b Iverson Road, London, NW6 2HE (please see the letter of support from my sister at Appendix 11).

£30 on food and drink.

£0 on accommodation

25th May 2020 Leeds (UK) Attending niece’s university graduation (please see the confirmation of my niece’s graduation at Appendix 5, a letter of support from my niece at Appendix 7).

We will then be attending a meal at the ‘Almost Famous’ restaurant in Leeds.

A late train will be taken to return back to London where I will stay at my sister’s accommodation.

£80 on a return train ticket from London King’s cross train station (see attached screenshots of trainline.com at Appendix 13)

£50 on food and drink.

£0 on accommodation.

26th May 2020 London (UK) My sister will drive me to London Heathrow where I will take the 8am flight back to Bangkok, Thailand. £30 on food and drink.

£0 on transport.

£0 on accommodation.

Total expected cost: £190

Why is this section important?

The purpose of your visit is a key consideration when deciding whether the Home Office should grant your UK visitor visa application.

The clearer that your purpose for visiting the UK is, the more genuine and credible you will appear to be.

Because of this, it is therefore helpful if you are able to use this letter of support to clearly discuss your plans and the costs associated with the UK trip.

In this section of the letter of support, it will be good if you cross-reference your stated intentions with evidence that you submit in your application.

For example: I will be taking the train on the 25th May, 2020 from London Heathrow to Leeds train station, which will cost £80. Please see appendix 13 that shows this.

It will also be good to get letter of supports from family or friends that supports your stated intentions.

For example, if you are visiting a specific family member or friend in the UK, a letter of support from them will also be helpful to include.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 4

Why I will not overstay the UK visitor visa

I fully intend to return to [my home country OR make an onwards journey to COUNTRY] before my UK visitor visa expires.

I have a good life back home and I would absolutely not want to trade it for a life as an outlaw in the UK.

The following are reasons that I would you to consider when deciding my application:

#1 My good immigration history

My unblemished UK immigration history is one indication that suggests that I am likely to comply with the terms of the UK visit visa and return to my home country prior to the visa expiration.

[Discuss your immigration history here – if you have a good immigration history. If you do not have a good immigration history, then do not include this sub-heading and instead discuss your immigration history under sub-heading 10 (potential weaknesses in my application)]

Example:

“In 2012, I was issued a UK visitor visa for 6 months (see appendix 13 which is a copy of page 34 of my attached passport). In 2015, I was also issued a UK visitor visa (see Appendix 14 which is a copy of page 36 of my attached passport.

In all of the above instances, I left before the expiration of the visa. I also complied with all of the visa conditions.”

[If you have been issued visas for countries other than the UK, discuss this here. In particular, visas that were issued from Australia, Ireland, Canada, New Zealand or any of the Schengen countries will be beneficial]

#2 My family ties to my home country

My family back home is another strong indication that I will return to my home country prior to the UK visitor visa expiring.

[Discuss family members back home here, especially if they are dependant on you].

Example:

My son, Jeremiah (13 years of age) and my daughter, Jodie (15 years of age), will stay in my home country of Bangladesh during my 9-day trip to the UK.

Please see their attached passport scans at Appendix 8 and 9.

During my UK visit, Jeremiah and Jodie will be cared for by my husband, Andy Jones, as evidenced by my husband’s letter of support at Appendix 14, which includes a copy of his passport at Appendix 15.


#3 My financial and economic ties to my home country

My financial and economic ties to my home country are other factors that strongly suggest that I have no reason to trade my life in [HOME COUNTRY] with a life as an illegal alien in the UK.

My assets and income are discussed in more detail below, under the sub-heading ‘My ability to adequately maintain myself in the UK’.


#4 Other links with my home country

[Discuss other links here]

Example:

I am currently studying a degree at Chiang Mai University, Thailand.

Please see the attached letter from my university at Appendix 6 that confirms this.

Please also see the attached term dates for my course at Appendix 7 that confirms that my intended trip to the UK is not during term-time but rather during the summer holidays.

Why is this section important?

The main reason why visit visa applications are refused is that the Home Office are scared that you will use the UK visitor visa to enter the UK, disappear and overstay your visa illegally.

Therefore, this section is certainly a section that you should make sure that you spend enough time on.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 5

Dependants I am applying with (if relevant)

As stated in the online application form, I am applying with child dependant(s), [NAME(S) AS STATED IN PASSPORT(S), AGE(S) & THEIR RELATIONSHIP TO YOU].

[Discuss how they will be cared for during their trip in the UK, i.e. whether they will accompany you during the whole trip or if they will spend time in the care of a friend or family member in the UK].

Why is this section important?

Obviously, if you are not applying with any child dependants, you can ignore this sub-heading.

However, if you are applying with child dependants, it is important that you are fully aware of the additional requirements that will apply.

In summary, you must show:

#1 That you (or your sponsor) will be able to adequately provide for any child dependants that are also applying for a UK visitor visa.

This is obviously linked with your ability to adequately maintain yourself – i.e. by the showing of assets and income.

In order to maintain a clear structure for this letter of support, you should make sure you sufficiently discuss your finances in the subheading ‘My ability to adequately maintain myself during the UK visit’ below.


#2 That all duties of care obligations with regards to child dependants will be met

Simply showing sufficient financial assets and income will not always suffice.

If, in light of all the circumstances, it is not clear how the child’s welfare will be looked after in the UK, it is likely that the application will be refused.

Like many UK visa applications, the child’s welfare is of an extremely high importance.


#3 That parental consent is given

Parental consent is a requirement for children’s UK visitor visas.

This requirement is usually satisfied where the visit visa applications are made on behalf of a child, although it is important that you are aware of the situations where the requirement will not be met.

If you are divorced with your child’s other parent, the parent with sole responsibility or legal custody must provide parental consent, which can be met via a letter of support.

If you are making the application and you are not the parent or legal guardian of any children who are applying, a letter of consent from both parents/legal guardians that confirms their relationship with the child will usually satisfy the parental consent requirement.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 6

My ability to adequately maintain myself during the UK visit

I confirm that I can adequately maintain myself [as well the dependants who are applying with me]. To support this, I will now discuss my sources of income and financial assets.

#1 My sources of income

[Discuss your sources of income here and note whether your income will continue to be received whilst in the UK].


#2 My assets and/or cash savings

[Discuss your assets and/or cash savings here]

#3 My on-going financial commitments

[Discuss your on-going financial commitments here, such as rent & mortgage payments]

Example:

I am employed as a journalist for The Daily Paper Company in Pakistan. I receive a gross annual salary of PKR 3,000,000 and I have permission from my employer to have paid leave for the week that I will be visiting the UK (see Appendix 8, which is a signed letter from my employer). For clarity, PKR 3,000,000 equates to 15,102 pounds sterling, as stated by the closing spot exchange rate found on www.oanda.com.

As evidenced by my attached bank statements (see Appendix 3), I saved a total of PKR 1,500,000 over the past 8 months to help fund my UK visit. This is the equivalent of £7,550 pounds sterling.

I also own my own house in Pakistan. Please see the attached documentation (Appendix 11-13) for 12 Wahdat Road, Lahore. The property’s worth, as stated on zoopla.com, is PKR 13,000,000 (Appendix 14).

Why is this section important?

It is crucial that you are able to convince the Home Office caseworker that you have sufficient resources to maintain and accommodate yourself adequately for the whole of your planned visit to the UK.

This includes the additional costs associated with applying with any dependant children.

If the expected cost of the visit is high when compared to your overall resources (or your sponsor’s overall resources), then questions may be raised regarding the genuineness of your intentions.

Unlike a UK spouse visa, there are no set rules regarding the amount of funds that you (or your sponsor) will need to show.

For example, there is no rule saying that an income of £10,000 is required or cash savings of £5,000 or more.

Instead, the Home Office caseworker will look at your circumstances (and your sponsor’s circumstances, if you have one) and your stated intentions and then make a decision based on that.

At the very minimum, it is clear that you have to prove that you can afford:

I) The cost of travelling to and from the UK;

II) Any costs associated with applying with dependant children;  and

III) What you say you intend to do in the UK (e.g. shopping or visiting a family in London).

There are a few points to note regarding evidencing assets and income.

Firstly, both your supporting letter as well as the documents that you submit should make the source of cash savings clear.

If your personal bank account shows a sudden and relatively large injection of cash into your bank, this may seem suspicious.

Secondly, you should make it clear that you can access to the cash savings.

Thirdly, especially when it comes to financial documentation, the more information you can include about this in the cover letter, the better.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 7

My sponsor (include this sub-heading only if you have one)

I am being sponsored by [SPONSOR’S NAME], who is my [RELATIONSHIP TO APPLICANT]. As evidenced by the attached documentation, [SPONSOR’S NAME]’s [ASSETS/INCOME] is more than enough to adequately provide for myself [and my dependant children who are applying with me] during my stay in the UK.

I can confirm that the relationship between [SPONSOR’S NAME] and I is genuine. Please see the attached documentation regarding this, as well as the attached letter of support from [SPONSOR’S NAME] that confirms [HIS/HER] intention to sponsor me.

[Discuss the relationship with your sponsor, including:

  • Whether the relationship is personal or professional
  • How you met,
  • Where you first met,
  • How often you meet,
  • How often you communicate with each other]
[Also clarify whether the sponsor has a previous history of sponsoring others for UK visas & whether there were any issues with those applications]

SUB-HEADING NUMBER 8

Why I am not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK my home (include this sub-heading if you have previously been issued a UK visitor visa only)

I can confirm that I do not intend to make the UK my home using frequent and successive visits.

As I discussed above, my main place of residence remains in my home country of [COUNTRY] as that is not only where I love to live, but also it is where I have all of my ties.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 9

Potential weaknesses in my application

Include this section only if there are any potential weaknesses in your application.

I recognise that [REASON 1] can raise doubts about the genuine and credibility as a visitor.

[Discuss this here and explain why that should not adversely affect your UK visitor visa application]

I recognise that [REASON 2] can raise doubts about the genuine and credibility as a visitor.

[Discuss this here and explain why that should not adversely affect your UK visitor visa application]

Example:

In 2016 I was previously refused a UK visitor visa on the grounds that I was not able to adequately show that I can maintain myself. Please see appendix 3, which is a copy of this refusal letter.

It was unfortunate that important financial documents, such as employer pay slips and bank statements, were not received by the Home Office – hence not being able to show that I could have adequately maintained myself.

In any event, one month after receiving the refusal letter, I submitted another UK visitor visa application. Fortunately, the Home Office received all of the supporting documents and my UK visitor visa application was swiftly approved.

In light of this, my previous UK visitor visa refusal should not adversely affect this application as not only have I shown adequate funds to cover my trip to the UK in this application, but the reason for the previous refusal does not apply to my case.

Why is this section important?

It is important to directly address the potential weaknesses of your application.

This is because Home Office caseworkers are trained specifically to identify weaknesses in applications.

By addressing possible concerns head on, it will be more difficult for the Home Office caseworker to refuse it on those grounds.


SUB-HEADING NUMBER 10

Relevant contact details

I can appreciate that you may want to contact my friends and family.

If you would like to do so, the following are some friend and family member’s contact information:

[FAMILY OR FRIEND NAME 1], [RELATIONSHIP TO ME]: [PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL]

[FAMILY OR FRIEND NAME 2], [RELATIONSHIP TO ME]: [PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL]

[FAMILY OR FRIEND NAME 3], [RELATIONSHIP TO ME]: [PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL]

[FAMILY OR FRIEND NAME 4], [RELATIONSHIP TO ME]: [PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL]

[FAMILY OR FRIEND NAME 5], [RELATIONSHIP TO ME]: [PHONE NUMBER & EMAIL]

If you would like to contact any other individuals or organisations and I have not provided their contact details, please feel free to get in touch and I will be more than happy to provide them.

Why is this section important?

In some cases, the Home Office caseworker may want to contact relevant third parties in your application in order to validate information to help decide whether they think you are a genuine and credible visitor.

By providing this information, not only are you making it easier for the Home Office caseworker by providing them with the information should they want it, it also gives the impression of open-ness (which some may interpret as meaning it is less likely that you are hiding something!)


CONCLUSION

Hopefully you found this article helpful.

Spending time writing a comprehensive covering letter is certainly a worthwhile activity as it is the best place for you to discuss relevant pieces of information in detail.

When writing the covering letter, remember:

  • Using simple, straightforward English is best.
  • Try to keep the contents of your supporting letter as relevant as possible
  • When you can, cross-refer to documentation throughout your supporting letter
  • As long as the structure of the letter is clear, it is worthwhile discussing different aspects of your application in great detail.

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