(CNN Spanish) — The UK government announced on Tuesday that it has lifted visa requirements for citizens of Colombia and Peru for short-term stays. Visa exemption also applies to citizens of Guyana.
The embassies of the United Kingdom in Colombia and Peru announced this Wednesday that until November 9 this year, citizens of these two countries will be able to enter the country with only their passports and will not need to apply for a short-term visa. Taking an important step towards a wider opening in the countries’ bilateral relations.
The governments of Colombia and Peru celebrated the announcement of the abolition of tourist visas for Great Britain.
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UK says goodbye to tourist visas for Colombians and Peruvians
On October 18, the UK embassies in Bogotá and Lima announced that citizens of Colombia and Peru no longer require visas for tourist trips or short stays, “after a process before the British Parliament. After various processes and rigorous assessment. British Government agencies.” said in a statement.
The move will be effective from November 9, 2022 at 00:00. From that point on, travelers from those two countries will be able to enter the UK for up to six months holding only a Colombian or Peruvian passport.
“On arrival in the UK, you must present a passport valid for the duration of your stay only,” the embassy in Peru said.
No need to provide biometric data and no need to present passport at any visa center for travel.
Where can I go without a visa?
This action applies to visits to any of the four countries of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Do I need a visa if I live in Colombia or Peru?
The UK government says visa restrictions depend on citizenship, place of residence or where the visa is used.
You can check if you need a visa before traveling as a visitor www.gov.uk/check-uk-visa.
What activities can be done without a visa?
Visitors wishing to visit the United Kingdom for at least six months can undertake tourism and business, “cultural, educational and sporting exchanges”, as well as short-term courses and activities at universities and educational institutions. .
What are the governments of Colombia and Peru saying?
The governments of Colombia and Peru have welcomed the move, thanking the UK government for its confidence and seeing it as an opportunity to strengthen ties between the two countries.
“The national government respects and greatly appreciates this decision, which puts Colombia on par with the United Kingdom’s strategic partners and recognizes it as a sign of confidence in Colombia, its nationals and its institutions,” said the Colombian foreign minister. Alvaro Leiva It is a statement. “This relaxation in the British visa regime further consolidates and strengthens bilateral relations between the two countries as it significantly boosts tourism, trade and culture, among many other elements of a vigorous and enriching bilateral agenda.”
For his part, Peru’s Foreign Minister, Cesar Landa, said the move opens up the possibility of mutually beneficial “economic, educational, cultural, scientific and tourism relations” with the United Kingdom.
“The opportunity is open today to increase the number of academic exchanges, to carry out collaborative research and to study short-term courses. Peruvian students and professionals can plan their participation in conferences, seminars and other events organized by Oxford, Cambridge, St. Andrews, Durham and more than 160 UK Universities,” Landa said in a statement.
What you can do as a regular visitor
According to the UK government, travelers to the UK without a short-term visa, also known as a “permanent traveller”, can enter the country for the following reasons:
- Travel or visit friends or family
- To volunteer for up to 30 days at a registered charity
- To transit in the United Kingdom to another country
- To attend business meetings
- To conduct business activities such as attending meetings or job interviews
- To participate in the school exchange program
- The government says to do recreational training for up to 30 days, “for example a dance course”.
- Study, practice or take exams. All these should be short term.
- For medical reasons
What you can’t do as a regular visitor
- Do paid or unpaid work in a UK company
- Self Employed
- Benefit from public funding
- Living in the UK for a long period of time with frequent or repeated visits
- Get married or register a civil union. To do this, you need to apply for a marriage visitor visa
For what reasons do you need to apply for a visa?
Travelers wishing to visit the UK for a short stay no longer need a visa, while those wishing to immigrate permanently to the UK or undertake long-term studies such as an undergraduate or postgraduate course must stay for more than six months. I still do.
“This change will not affect people traveling for work, long-term study or wanting to settle permanently in the UK,” the UK government says.
For this they still need a visa and have to fulfill certain requirements as well as pay the application.
What if you have already paid for a short golden visa?
Travelers planning to visit the UK from Colombia and Peru and who paid for a short-term visa to enter the country before October 18 can only claim a refund if they do not submit their biometric data.
But if you have already submitted your biometric information at the Visa Application Center (VAC), you will not be eligible for a refund.
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