The Immigration Health Surcharge will be increased from £200 to £400 a year at the end of this year
The UK Home Office has announced that the Immigration Health Surcharge, also known as the IHS fee, is going to increase from £200 to £400 per year as of the 18th of December.
WHAT IS THE IHS FEE (IMMIGRATION HEALTH SURCHARGE)?
The IHS Fee is a surcharge that all UK bound visa applicants must pay when they apply for a visa to work in the UK (this includes students, Tier 5 Youth Mobility Visa applicants). The surcharge amounts to £150 per year for students and Youth Mobility applicants (for the 2 year duration of the visa), so a total of £300 (around AUD $550) – and £200 per year for all other visas, so the UK Ancestry Visa, for example, comes with a £1000 (around $1800) surcharge for the full 5 year duration. This surcharge is paid up front, when you apply for your UK visa, is not optional, and must be paid in full, for the full duration of your visa, regardless of how long you actually plan to stay in the UK.
WHAT DOES THIS SURCHARGE COVER?
In all honesty, this surcharge is actually a pretty good deal. Your surcharge goes into the NHS health system, covering the costs of your UK health care services for the duration of your visa’s validity in the UK. This means that you’ll have the same access to health care as any other UK resident/citizen. In terms of health care costs, and access to a great healthcare system, this is quite a good deal.
WHEN AND WHY IS THE SURCHARGE GOING UP?
The UK government claims that the increase will bring some £220m into the NHS system every year. This will help the country to further improve their health care system and manage the additional costs brought on by migrants (permanent and temporary) living in the UK.
The Increase is set to happen at the end of December 2018!
IS THERE ANY WAY I CAN AVOID THE INCREASE?
Yes! There is!
If you plan to travel to the UK within the next 6 months, we urge you to apply for your UK Visa NOW!
Let us lodge your UK Visa for you. Contact us now and we can get your application started before the IHS Fee has doubled!
» CLICK HERE to contact us today!