UK Visa Inquiry Procedures and Tracking Process

UK Visa Inquiry Procedures and Tracking Process: Everything You Need to Know

Traveling to the United Kingdom for business, work, study, or tourism requires a valid visa. Applying for a UK visa can be an overwhelming and challenging process, with many steps to follow and paperwork to complete. Fortunately, the UK government has a well-established inquiry and tracking process to help applicants get the information they need, answer their questions promptly, and keep track of their application status with ease.

In this long-form article, we’ll discuss the inquiry procedures and tracking process for UK visas in detail, so you can feel confident when applying for a visa and get all your questions answered.

UK Visa Inquiry Procedures

The UK government provides several channels and methods to inquire about visa applications, requirements, fees, and other related information. Here are some of the main visa inquiry procedures and how to use them:

1. Telephone inquiries

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) operates a global contact center that provides visa inquiries and advice by telephone. The contact center is available from Monday to Friday between 8 AM and 6 PM GMT, with different numbers for each country or region.

To make an inquiry by phone, you need to provide your full name, application reference number, and date of birth. You may also need to answer some security questions to confirm your identity and protect your privacy. The UKVI aims to answer most inquiries within five minutes and resolve most issues within 24 hours.

2. Email inquiries

If you prefer to make an inquiry by email, you can use the UKVI online contact form. You need to provide your contact details, passport or visa application number, and a brief description of your query or problem. The UKVI aims to respond to most emails within five working days, but some inquiries may take longer, depending on their complexity.

3. Webchat inquiries

The UKVI also offers a webchat service that allows you to chat online with a UKVI agent and get answers to your visa inquiries or issues in real-time. To access the webchat service, you need to go to the official UKVI website and click on the ‘Chat Now’ button. You may need to wait for a few minutes until an agent becomes available, but the response time is generally fast and efficient.

4. Online inquiries

If you prefer to search for information or answers to your visa inquiries online, you can use the UKVI website’s ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section or the ‘Contact Us’ page. These resources offer comprehensive information on visa requirements, application procedures, visa fees, appointment scheduling, and more. You can also use the UKVI’s online tracking service to check your application status, see the latest updates, and receive notifications by email or SMS. The UKVI recommends that all visa applicants use the online tracking service to stay informed and avoid delays or misunderstandings.

UK Visa Tracking Process

Tracking your UK visa application is crucial to know its progress, identify any issues or delays, and make necessary arrangements accordingly. Here are the main steps to track your UK visa application:

1. Application reference number

When you apply for a UK visa, you will receive an application reference number. This number is unique to your application and is essential to track its status. You can find the application reference number on the receipt or acknowledgment letter that you receive after submitting your application.

2. Online tracking service

Once you have the application reference number, you can use the UKVI online tracking service to check your visa application’s progress. To use the tracking service, you need to go to the UKVI website and enter your application reference number, date of birth, and nationality. The tracking service provides real-time updates on your application status, including when it has been received, processed, and dispatched.

3. Email or SMS notifications

The UKVI also provides email or SMS notifications to inform you of any changes or updates to your visa application status. You can opt-in to receive email or SMS notifications during the application process to stay informed of any progress and avoid any delays.

4. Contacting the UKVI

If you still have questions or concerns about your visa application status, you can contact the UKVI by phone, email, webchat, or by visiting their office in person. You may need to provide your application reference number and other details to receive accurate information and advice.

UK Visa FAQs

Q. How long does it take to process a UK visa application?

A. The processing time for a UK visa application depends on the type of visa and the country where you apply from. You can check the latest processing times on the UKVI website or by contacting the UKVI directly.

Q. Can I appeal a UK visa refusal decision?

A. Yes, you can appeal a UK visa refusal decision. You need to follow the appeal procedures and provide all the necessary documents and evidence to support your case. If you are still not satisfied with the outcome, you can apply for a judicial review.

Q. Do I need to attend an interview for a UK visa application?

A. The UKVI may require you to attend an interview as part of your visa application process. The interview is usually conducted at a UK visa application center or consulate and aims to verify your identity, assess your eligibility, and gather more information on your purpose of travel.

Q. How can I extend my UK visa?

A. You can apply to extend your UK visa before it expires by following the relevant procedures and providing the necessary documents and evidence. The UKVI generally recommends that you apply to extend your visa at least two months before it expires.


Applying for a UK visa can be an involved and sometimes stressful process, but the UK government has a robust inquiry and tracking system in place to help applicants navigate the process smoothly. By using the inquiry procedures and tracking process discussed in this article, you can get the information you need, track your visa application’s progress, and stay informed of any updates or changes. Remember to consult the official UKVI website for the latest visa requirements, fees, and procedures, and to contact the UKVI directly if you have any questions or concerns.

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