The Global Student Advisory Service provides comprehensive advice and support to Cardiff Met students (prospective and enrolled students) on UK visa options and regulations.
Trained and supportive advisers can help international students with a range of immigration issues, including:
My visa will expire before I finish my course. Can I extend it?
Some students may be required to extend their visa part way through their studies if they need extra time to complete their course. Once you are aware taht you need extra time to complete your course, i.e. following an exam board, you MUST contact the Global Student Advisory Service immediately for advice and assistance. The support team will advise you whether or not you will be required to make a visa extension application urgently and will provide you with step-by-step guidance and support throughout the whole process.
When should I extend my visa?
Students who have completed their course at Cardiff Met and wish to start another course with us will need to apply for a visa extension either before their current visa expires or within 6 weeks of the new course start date - whichever date is sooner.
Students who are starting a new course and are currently in the UK with a Tier 4 visa from another university will need to apply for their new visa before they are allowed to enrol.
What do I need to do to extend my student visa?
If you are required to extend your visa you will need to contact the Global Student Advisory Service who will arrange a visa extension appointment. You will also be advised which supporting documents you will be required to prepare and submit with your visa application. You will be asked to provide these documents so that they can be checked that they meet UKVI's regulations.
We would highly recommend that you read through the Tier 4 Policy guidance carefully before attending your visa extension appointment to ensure you understand what is required of you.
Which documents will I need to apply for a visa extension?
Passport(s) - You will need to submit your current passport plus any old passports that contain visas relating to your current stay in the UK
Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
Police Registration Certificate - Only applicable if your visa states that you must register with the police in the UK.
Marriage or Civil Partner Certificate - Only applicable if you are applying with dependants or if it is proof of a name change
Birth certificates - Only applicable if you will be using your parents bank statements or as proof of a name change
Driving licences - Only applicable if it is needed as proof of a name change
Bank Statements - You will require original bank statements in your name or in the name of your parent(s) showing money held in an account for living costs and any outstanding tuition fees for a consecutive 28 day period. The statements must not be older than 31 days on the date you submit your visa application to the UKVI.
Sponsorship letter – Only applicable if you are officially sponsored by a government, an international organization or an international company and they are agreeing to cover some or all of your tuition fees and living costs during your time studying in the UK. If your sponsor is only covering part of your tuition fees or living costs you will also need to submit bank statements for the outstanding amount. These bank statements should be in your name or your parent's name.
Education certificates – The educational documents used to assess your offer will be stated on your CAS (if applicable).
ATAS Certificate – Only applicable if you have been advised by the university and if this is stated on your CAS as a requirement. If you require an ATAS certificate, it must be granted before you apply for your visa. Further information regarding ATAS can be found here.
CAS (Certificate of Acceptance of Studies) - All applications must be supported by a CAS number. This will be issued to you when all the documents have been checked.
Letter from parents - Only required if you are using your parents' bank statements. The letter should confirm that they are financially supporting you during your studies at Cardiff Metropolitan University and you have access to the funds. It should be addressed to the Immigration Case Officer, UKVI and should be signed.
Translations - Any document that has not been written in English must be translated by an official translator and contain the translators qualifications, stamp, date and confirmation that the translation was based on the original document.
What happens at my visa extension appointment?
You will be offered an appointment in which your online application and supporting documents will be checked to ensure that they meet the UKVI requirements, a Certificate of Acceptance of Studies (CAS) will issued during the appointment if your documentation is correct. Your application will be finalised with the payment of the Immigration Health Surcharge and the payment for the visa application.
Click here for more information regarding the immigration health surcharge.
You will then need to book an appointment for your biometrics to be taken and upload a scanned copy of all of your supporting documents to be submitted to UKVI.
Will I need to have my Biometrics taken as part of the visa application process?
Yes! After you will need to book an appointment with Sopra Steria to submit your biometrics (fingerprints and photograph). The Global Student Advisory Service will help you book an appointment.
In - Country Credibility Interviews
As part of your Tier 4 visa extension application in the UK you may be required to attend a credibility interview before the UKVI make a decision on your visa application. If you are asked to attend a credibility interview as part of your visa application, you must ensure you can answer questions relating to your immigration status, your course of study or any previous course(s) studied in the UK. You may be asked questions about the university or about any previous English language Test you may have taken inside or outside of the UK.
Credibility interviews is an important part of the visa application process therefore please ensure you are prepared to answer all of the questions fully and clearly.
Can my family apply for visa extensions?
Your dependants can apply for immigration permission to join or remain with you in the UK only if:
You are government-sponsored and your course is over six months long OR
You are doing a postgraduate level course of 9 months or longer at a Higher Education Institution OR
You had a Tier 4 or Pre-Tier 4 student visa for your previous course where the course was over six months long AND:
- Your visa is valid or expired no more than three months before this immigration application AND
- Your new immigration application is for a course over six months long AND
- Your dependants already have Tier 4 Dependant or Student Dependant visas AND
- You apply for immigration permission at the same time as your dependant
If you require further details about making visa extension applications or dependant applications for your husband, wife or children, please contact the Global Student Advisory Service for advice.
What happens when my visa has been issued?
Please click here for more information about what happens when your visa has been issued
I would like to visit a different country during the university vacation period. How do I apply for a visa to do this?
You should always plan well in advance and check whether you require a visa to enter the country you wish to visit before you make plans to travel.
Another important aspect you must check if you are planning to travel is that countries quite often require you to have a minimum number of months remaining on your UK student visa in order for the relevant embassy to grant you a visa. Some countries may require a minimum of 6 months remaining on your UK Student visa- always check!
The Foreign Commonwealth Office website will help you locate the embassy web page of your choice which will then give you full information about application procedures. The Global Student Advisory Service will be happy to write a letter to support your visa application. To apply for this letter please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a Schengen visa?
This is the name of a visa that you may wish to apply for if you are planning to travel to Europe. This single visa would allows you to travel to multiple European countries meaning that you would not need to apply for individual visas for each country. There are currently 26 European countries that are part of the Schengen agreement including: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Italy, Lativa, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland,
How do I apply for a Schengen visa?
Decide which country you would like to travel to first, before visiting the embassy website of that country to download a Schengen visa application form. You should then apply to this embassy for your visa. Details of the requirements and how to apply will be found on the embassy's website. For a list of embassies, please visit the
Foreign & Commonwealth Office's website