(How) Can I Move to the UK?

The UK has strict rules about immigration and visa procedures, much like many other countries. Whether you can move to the UK depends on if you qualify for one of the possible UK Visas:

  • do you have an ancestral right?
  • do you have family, spouse or fiancé in the UK?
  • do you have a job offer in the UK?
  • do you wish to study in the UK?
  • are you wealthy?
  • are you starting a business that will employ others?

If you answered "yes" to at least one of those questions, then you have a possible path to qualify for a visa. If not, unfortunately you'll need to adjust your expectations. The UK is trying to reduce immigration, and there is no open door to American migrants. It is not easy to meet all Visa requirements, some of them are reliant on financial resources, to ensure that migrants are not a burden to the UK tax payer. The anti-migrant rhetoric in tabloids like the Daily Mail can be aggressive and this has had an effect of changes of the Visa rules.

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UK Yankee is a resource and community for expatriate Americans living in or planning to move to the UK, established in 1999. Please join the discussions in our friendly expat community.