Visa Traveler

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How to write a compelling cover letter for UK visa (that will impress the ECO)

Updated: September 6, 2023

Cover Letter for UK Visa

A cover letter for UK visa is instrumental in persuading the ECO that you meet the visa requirements and have no intention of overstaying your visa. It gives you the opportunity to convince the ECO that you are a genuine visitor and you will promptly return back to your country.

A cover letter is a document to convey additional information that wasn’t asked in the UK visa application. It’s not a mandatory document but by far the most helpful document in increasing your chances of UK visa approval.

Table of Contents

Why do you need a cover letter for uk visa.

The information asked in the UK visa application isn’t enough to convince the ECO that you will return back to your home country after your trip. 

Most questions on the UK visa application are close-ended. They don’t give you an opportunity to explain. 

A cover letter allows you to explain in your own words and be as descriptive as you can. You can use your own format and even use illustrations if needed.

Is a cover letter mandatory for UK visa?

No. A cover letter is not mandatory for UK visa. It’s not even a document in the documents checklist for UK visa.

When I applied for my UK visa, I did not submit a cover letter. At that time, I didn’t know the importance of a cover letter for UK visa. I didn’t feel the need to explain anything additional, so I didn’t submit one. My visa was still approved. 

That’s not the case for everyone. A cover letter will not hurt your chances of approval, it can only help. It gives you an additional opportunity to convince the ECO. 

If I apply again for my UK visa, I would definitely submit a cover letter. 

What should you write in the cover letter?

A cover letter is not a mandatory document for UK visa. So obviously, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) does not provide any guidelines on what to include in the cover letter.

As you all know, I started this website in 2016. Since then, I have been helping my readers with their visas. I figured that a cover letter was the most helpful for UK visa. 

I have been writing cover letters for my readers. Over time, I learned that a cover letter with a certain format worked the best for UK visa. 

I would like to impart all my knowledge in this article, so you can write the most compelling cover letter for your UK visa. It will not only impress the ECO but will greatly improve your chances of visa approval.

So without any further delay, let’s get started. 

Format of the cover letter

Short Simple and Clear Cover Letter for UK Visa

The goal of the cover letter is to convince the ECO that you are a genuine visitor. You must do this in a simple, short and clear manner. ECOs rarely will have time for anything other than what’s asked.

Write your cover letter in simple words as if it’s meant for a 5th grader. If the language is too complicated to read, ECO will not bother to read it. 

Do not use words that people from your country can only understand. ECOs are from the UK and they can only understand the terms that they use in the UK. 

Example: It’s common for people in India to say something like “ please do the needful and revert back to me “. Even though it’s still understandable, saying something like “ please let me know if you need anything else from me ” will help the ECO understand better. 

Remember, a cover letter is not a mandatory document. ECO is doing you a favor by reading it. So, make it easy for the ECO.

Your cover letter should never be longer than two pages. ECOs rarely have time for things other than what’s asked in the application. If you present them with a booklet, they will toss it in the trash without even looking at it. 

Again remember, a cover letter is not mandatory. It should not consume too much of ECO’s time.

To further simplify your cover letter, format it with subheadings, bullets and highlights. This helps the ECO to quickly glance over the letter and read any section that interests them. 

Example:   Instead of writing like this – 

“ I intend to travel to the UK for tourism from 20 June 2021 to 24 June 2021 and I plan to visit various attractions in London such as Buckingham Palace, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, London Eye, Madame Tussauds, National Gallery, etc. “

Write like this – 

  • I intend to travel to the UK for tourism. My travel dates are from 20 June 2021 to 27 June 2021. 
  • 20 June 2021: Arrive at Heathrow International Airport at 3 PM. Check-In and dinner.
  • 21 June 2021: Visit Buckingham Palace and the Tower of London
  • 22 June 2021: Visit Tower Bridge and London Eye
  • 23 June 2021: Visit Madame Tussauds and National Gallery
  • 24 June 2021: Depart from Heathrow International Airport at 10 AM

Sections in the cover letter

Templates for UK visa by Visa Traveler

It’s important to break the cover letter into different sections. This helps the ECO quickly glance through the letter and understand the gist of it. If needed, the ECO can read specific sections. Your cover letter for UK visa must contain the following sections.

Section 1: Your previous UK visa refusals

In the UK visa application, there is a question on previous UK visa refusals. It asks about your previous UK visa refusal and its details. This question asks you to explain why your UK visa was refused but doesn’t ask why it shouldn’t have been refused

There is no other place in the application to address your previous visa refusals either. There is the “additional/extra information” area, but it’s only for text and not suitable for formatting or pictures. Therefore, the cover letter is the most appropriate place for addressing your previous UK visa refusal. 

If you are re-applying to challenge your UK visa refusal , include a section in your cover letter specifically for your previous visa refusal. Address your previous visa refusal with evidence, additional information and documentation. 

Keep this section as the first section in your cover letter. Having this section at the beginning of the cover letter will help the new ECO get straight to the point. Otherwise, they may overlook and your efforts of re-application may go to waste.

Here is an example.

Previous UK Visa Refusal

My previous application for the UK visitor visa with GWF number GWF12345678 was refused on 16 March 2021. 

I would like to address the reason for the refusal with additional information and documentation.

Reason for refusal: The sources of the deposit (£850) were not demonstrated by the documents provided.

Explanation: The deposit in question was made on 05-Dec-2020 for the amount of £850. This amount was the yearly bonus from my employer. Yearly bonuses are deposited in the first week of December every year. Please find the attached documentation to prove that these funds are available to me.

Additional Documentation: (1) Bonus slip, (2) bonus announcement email and (3) letter from my employer with details of bonus, amount and dates.

Section 2: Your travel purpose and itinerary

In this section, mention your purpose of visit and proposed itinerary in the UK. The itinerary must be detailed enough but not too descriptive to confuse the ECO. Format it with bullets and/or a table.

Proposed Travel Itinerary

  • I intend to travel to the UK for tourism for a total of 7 days. My travel dates are from 14 Oct 2021 to 20 Oct 2021.
  • My planned day-by-day itinerary is as follows

Section 3: People traveling with you to the UK

In this section, mention the people that will travel with you to the UK. If you are applying for the visa with your family members, mention their details such as name, passport number and GWF number. 

Each individual must submit one UK visa application. Say if a husband, wife and child are traveling to the UK together, each of them must submit a separate UK visa application. There is no easy way to tie these applications together. 

There is a question in the application asking for travel companions, but mentioning them again in your cover letter will help tie them all together. 

Travel Companions

I will be traveling to the UK with my wife and son. The GWF numbers of my wife’s and son’s UK visa applications are as follows.

Section 4: Your current employment/business or university details

In this section, mention your current employment details. Include details such as the employer’s name, how long you have been working and your current salary.

Employment Details

  • I currently work for Samcore Logistics, LTD, Dubai as a product manager.
  • I have been working as a product manager at Samcore Logistics, LTD since Nov 2014.
  • My monthly salary is 7,000 AED after taxes.
  • An original letter from my employer, a leave approval letter and bank statements indicating the salary deposits are attached.

If you are a business owner, mention the details of your business such as your business name, your role in the company, yearly revenue, etc.

Business Details

  • I own a construction business in Dubai since 2016. I’m the founder and president of the business.
  • The business has been in positive cash flow since its inception with yearly revenue of 300,000 AED.
  • A copy of my business registration, business license, bank statements and tax returns are attached.

If you are currently a student at the university, mention your university details along with the program, major and semester details.

University Details

  • I’m a full-time student enrolled in the undergraduate program at the University of the Philippines.
  • I’m currently in the second semester of my second year with another four semesters remaining to graduate.
  • A letter from my university and the fee payment receipts are attached.

Section 5: Your current financial situation

In this section, mention your source of income, savings and the bank statements for your UK visa . 

If you have multiple bank accounts, this section is a good place to talk about it. Explain why you have multiple bank accounts and how they are connected.

Financial Solvency

  • I currently have 300,000 INR (approx. 2,900 GBP) in my bank account.
  • The source of my savings is my salary from my employer, WinTech Corporation.
  • The last 6 months bank statements and payslips are attached.

It’s quite common for many to work in a foreign country and send all their earnings back home for family maintenance or savings. In such cases, you will have to submit bank statements from both countries, but most importantly, mention that clearly in this section.

If you use a broker or third party to send cash back home, errors can occur and transactions may not match. I highly recommend using a money transfer service such as Wise to transfer cash back to your home country.

Section 6: Your sponsorship information

If you are paying for your trip yourself, this section does not apply to you. Have this section in your cover letter only if someone else is paying for your trip. 

In this section, mention your sponsor details, your relationship with the sponsor, what expenses they will bear, etc. 

Sponsorship Details

  • My brother is sponsoring my trip to the UK.
  • He will bear all my travel expenses while I’m in the UK including accommodation, food and transportation.
  • A letter from my brother, his UK residence permit, employment proofs, bank statements, his apartment lease contract and the document to prove our relationship are attached.

Section 7: Your travel history

In this section, mention your travel history. Travel history is very important and highlighting it will only help with your UK visa. Your travel history can include all your previous travels to the UK and other countries. If you have traveled to a country multiple times, mention that country only once.

Travel History

  • In the last 5 years, I have traveled to 8 countries for both tourism and business. 
  • The countries I have traveled to are Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, UAE, Turkey and Denmark.
  • A copy of my visas and entry and exit stamps from all the above countries are attached.

Section 8: Any family members staying back at home

In this section, mention any family members remaining at home during your UK trip. This helps prove your family ties with your country. Family ties indicate that you will return back to your country after your trip. 

Do not include this section if it does not apply to you.

Family Remaining at Home

  • I currently live with my wife and two children.
  • My wife and children will remain at home during my trip to the UK.
  • A copy of my wife’s employment proof and children’s school receipts are attached.

Section 9: Your intention to return back

In this section, mention that you will promptly return back after your trip and the reasons for that. Reasons can be employment, business or attending to family needs. 

Intention to Return Back

  • I intend to return to Pakistan after the end of my UK trip on 27 Oct 2021 as I have to report back to my employer and continue at my job on 28 Oct 2021.
  • An original leave approval letter from my employer is attached.

Section 10: Any miscellaneous information

If you want to add something that didn’t fall under any specific section above, you can include it here. This could be something about properties you own (economic tie), your rental situation, covid safety precautions, etc.


  • I currently live in a rental apartment. A copy of my rental contract is attached.
  • I own farmland with my wife. A copy of my property ownership document is attached. 
  • I assure you that I will follow COVID safety precautions throughout my trip.

A cover letter is not a mandatory document for UK visa. But in my experience, it’s the most helpful document. The goal of the cover letter is to convince the ECO that you are a genuine visitor. Your cover letter must be simple, short and clear. Break the cover letter into sections, paragraphs and bullet lists. Use pictures and screenshots if necessary.

That’s it, folks! Now you know how to write a compelling cover letter for UK visa. This will greatly improve the chances of your UK visa approval. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments below.


Thirumal Motati

Thirumal Motati is an expert in tourist visa matters. He has been traveling the world on tourist visas for more than a decade. With his expertise, he has obtained several tourist visas, including the most strenuous ones such as the US, UK, Canada, and Schengen, some of which were granted multiple times. He has also set foot inside US consulates on numerous occasions. Mr. Motati has uncovered the secrets to successful visa applications. His guidance has enabled countless individuals to obtain their visas and fulfill their travel dreams. His statements have been mentioned in publications like Yahoo, BBC, The Hindu, and Travel Zoo.


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LEGAL DISCLAIMER We are not affiliated with immigration, embassies or governments of any country. The content in this article is for educational and general informational purposes only, and shall not be understood or construed as, visa, immigration or legal advice. Your use of information provided in this article is solely at your own risk and you expressly agree not to rely upon any information contained in this article as a substitute for professional visa or immigration advice. Under no circumstance shall be held liable or responsible for any errors or omissions in this article or for any damage you may suffer in respect to any actions taken or not taken based on any or all of the information in this article. Please refer to our full disclaimer for further information.

AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE This post may contain affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. Please refer to our full disclosure for further information.


Can a US green card holder travel to UK without visa


Kiesha says

March 5, 2023 at 8:53 am

Hi Thirumal, I love your articles and it has been really helpful, I applied for my Mums EUSS dependent Visa to travel to the UK which got rejected due to insufficient money transfers. It takes nearly 6 months to get a reply from them sometimes more than that. I need my mum to travel to the UK to be present for my delivery in July so I wanted to apply for a visiting visa. Do you think that would be an issue as I had applied for a dependent visa before? Thank you for your help.

Thirumal Motati says

March 6, 2023 at 2:07 pm

Hi Kiesha! Yes, it can pose an issue. I have seen cases where a visitor visa was refused due to a previous EUSS refusal. ECO assumes that the applicant is taking a different route to gain entry into the UK. So you will have to put more effort into convincing the ECO, through additional documentation and a cover letter.

Ankit Kate says

October 11, 2022 at 1:24 pm

Hello sir, Thanks a lot for the detailed information on the visa process. I am currently working on a Skilled Worker Tier 2 visa and planning to sponsor a visa for my mother-in-law. I have below 2 doubts regarding the same – 1. I currently live in a rented single room in the UK and planning to get a flat on rent in December (when my wife and mother in law would be arriving), so what address should I mention in the application? 2. Is it mandatory to show savings in my mother-in-law’s name if I am sponsoring all the expenses?

October 14, 2022 at 3:14 am

Hi Ankit! 1. To avoid complications, you should mention the new address (flat from December) as the “accommodation” address for your mother-in-law. 2. Yes. This is becoming very important and UKVI is very strict about this. Your mother-in-law must have her own income and savings. If she doesn’t, then the person on which she depends, ex: father-in-law. Also, make sure to show any properties that she owns and family members that will remain in her country during her UK trip.

October 17, 2022 at 8:28 am

Hi Thirumal, thanks a lot for the advice. I just have one more question – My mother-in-law doesn’t have much savings or funds but has a property in her name. But the property papers are in a regional language. Do we need to get those translated into English for application?

October 18, 2022 at 7:02 am

Yes, the papers must be translated into English for the UK visa.

Darshita Gajjar says

September 21, 2022 at 9:04 am

Hello. Thank you for the article. It is very helpful. I have a question about the address required in the cover letter. I am applying from Germany via TLS Application Centre. Based on my knowledge, TLS only collects the biometrics, processes your application and forward it to the UK Visas & Immigration in the UK. So for my cover letter which address should I write under The Entry Clearance Officer?

September 26, 2022 at 3:53 am

Hi Darshita! TLS forwards the application to the local UK embassy or consulate in Germany. So you can address the cover letter to “The Entry Clearance Officer, Embassy of the UK in Germany”. Who you address your cover letter is not that important. The content of the letter is important though.

Raymond says

October 6, 2022 at 9:11 pm

My wife is offering to cover the cost for me and our 3 kids for 5days Christmas holiday. Do I also need to submit my bank statements, as my pay is quite low?

October 7, 2022 at 3:46 am

Hi Raymond! Yes, even if your wife is sponsoring your application, you must provide your own bank statements too. Your income/savings do not have to meet the financial requirements since you are seeking sponsorship. If you have a decent income and can provide bank statements, you should be fine.

August 27, 2022 at 11:51 pm

Hello Thirumal. Thank you for the support and advice in your articles. Please how do I prove that I am related to my brother I am Inviting? I do not have a birth certificate, Is a baptism card sufficient enough as our parents never processed our birth certificates and we are in our 40’s now.

September 1, 2022 at 5:59 am

Hi Sue! Any document that shows your names along with your parents’ names should work. Or any documents that show both your names with matching last names can also be used. But yeah the baptism cards should work too.

Tushar Shah says

August 14, 2022 at 6:50 am

Thanks, your write-up is more than useful. I am applying for a UK visa thru VFS from Pune. To whom should the cover letter be addressed?

August 14, 2022 at 11:55 am

Hi Tushar! You can address your cover letter to the following.

The Entry Clearance Officer The Consulate General of the United Kingdom, Pune, India

There may not be a consulate of the UK in Pune. Your application might be sent to the consulate of the UK in Mumbai or New Delhi. But just using the city where you are applying is fine. Many readers have done that and none of them faced any issues. What’s important in the cover letter is the content, so you will be fine.

Dharshine says

January 28, 2023 at 4:12 pm

Hi Thirumal, I am having a question that is I and my child want to visit the UK for the summer holidays. My husband is an ex-serviceman and he had many properties, pay slip, pension slip everything because of insufficient leave he can’t come with us. But we had a joint account maintaining about 4 lakhs. Is that possible that I and my child can get visas through my husband’s sponsorship?

February 10, 2023 at 11:44 am

Hi Dharshine! Yes, your husband can sponsor your application even though he will not be traveling with you. He would need to write a sponsorship letter and provide all his documents. Similarly, you would need to mention all these details in your cover letter.

Pujan Sinha says

August 13, 2022 at 3:44 am

Hi Thirumal, I intend to apply for UK tourist visa. I have traveled to other countries before however last time there was a refusal from the Netherlands. Do I need to mention the refusal reasons and justify them? Also I had withdrawn my UKVI application once, due to change of travel plans. Should I include these points in the cover letter?

August 13, 2022 at 7:42 am

Hi Pujan! Yes. You must mention your Netherlands visa refusal and the reasons for its refusal in your UK visa application. You don’t have to mention your UK visa application withdrawal. It’s are not a refusal, so no need to mention.

shalini says

August 12, 2022 at 7:51 pm

Hi, I have been to the UK before and came back. The year 2001. Then 2005 I applied for a student visa, I got the visa and went for studies. After a successful year of studying, I apply for leave to remain which it got refused. The reason is the college was closed down. I appeal again. They refused. Then came back home. Now after 10 yrs, I am applying for a visit visa to see my friend. my friend is sponsoring me. Am I supposed to mention that 12 yrs before history in my cover letter. Please advise.

August 16, 2022 at 9:40 am

Hi Shalini! If you are re-applying immediately after a refusal, it helps to mention it in your cover letter so you can address it. But there is no need to mention a refusal that happened 12 years ago in your cover letter. However, you will have to mention all visa refusals, even if they happened 12 years ago, in your visa application form.

saidi adeleke says

August 12, 2022 at 4:42 pm

I am self employed with very good travel history – USA, UAE and 6 European countries. As a self employed is it important that I should submit my personal bank statement while applying for UK visitors visa or I can only submit my company bank statement since I will be sponsoring myself for the trip? PLEASE ADVISE.

August 16, 2022 at 9:52 am

Hi Adeleke! If your self-employment is registered as a business, then you must submit both business and personal bank statements. Your salary deposits must match those bank statements. If you only submit your business bank statements, then you must write a letter on your company letterhead that your business funds are available for personal use.

Jamal Adejare says

December 10, 2022 at 1:29 am

Hi Thirumal, Please I want to ask about running your business on your personal account, but had the business registered, will it be mandated you provide a company account still?

December 13, 2022 at 4:29 am

Hi Jamal! The ideal setup is to have separate bank accounts for your business. But it is not mandatory for your UK visa. If you do a good job of explaining things and providing clear documentation, you should be fine.

Foster Osei Bonsu says

July 27, 2022 at 9:41 pm

Please thank you very much for your education on travelling application. I want to know how lengthy or how many words must the cover letter be on a visit application.

July 28, 2022 at 4:28 am

Hi Foster! I recommend keeping your cover letter to one page or two pages max. A cover letter is not a mandatory document so keeping it to one page has a higher chance of ECO reading it. If it’s too many pages, the ECO may skip reading it.

June 27, 2022 at 1:09 am

Hello, thanks for the great write-up, it’s super useful! Which category should we upload the cover letter to when uploading documents for self-service?

June 27, 2022 at 8:55 am

Hi Mike! It depends on whether you are using VFS or TLS. It should probably go into the “other” category.

Bankole says

May 25, 2022 at 5:01 pm

Thank you very much for the opportunity to learn from your wealth of experience. My organization, that is my office is set to sponsor me to a conference in the UK in August 2022. All expenses as regards the trip are being paid by my office. In this case, what other documents do I attach to my application sir? I do not have a fat net pay because larger percentage of my salary is being deducted to five (5) cooperative societies that I belong to for the purpose of saving for raining days.

May 31, 2022 at 8:29 am

Hi Bankole! From your side, you must show that you have sufficent income and savings to support your trip incase your employer decides not to support you after you land in the UK. Your income and savings doesn’t have to conform to £150 a day requirment since your employer is sponsoring you. So if you have savings enough for a flight back home should work fine too.

May 24, 2022 at 2:57 pm

Hello, my brother is due to apply to come and visit me in the UK. I am a British and will be sponsoring his trip. But he lives in the village and he is a farmer (a cash business and he deposits the money in his bank). He has money in his bank statement equivalent to £1000. how can we prove this source of income please. He is a village man farming and selling in the village and Saturday markets. What documents should he submit?

May 25, 2022 at 6:30 am

Hi Sue! If he can prove that he is a farmer and sells his yield/produce at certain markets, then that should be sufficient. Also, if he owns the farming land, that would really help with his visa. What about his travel history? Has he ever been outside the country?

May 30, 2022 at 11:49 pm

Hello Thirumal. Thank you, how can he prove that he is a farmer, please? Also yes he has been outside the country since 2012 ( 10 years ago). The land he is farming on is our inheritance and the land title is in his name but as an administrator, pending the transfer to his name. Is this sufficient. The letter of administration from the court mentions him as the son of the late.

May 31, 2022 at 8:08 am

Yes. That should be sufficient to prove that the land belongs to him. It also needs to be properly explained in the “extra information” section within the UK visa application and also in the cover letter.

May 23, 2022 at 8:34 am

Hi, I am a single parent travelling with my son to UK on a tourist visa. I have the consent form, divorce decree and cover letter for my travel. I have also included other docs as per your article above. What other documents should I include in my application considering the single parent bit? My appointment is day after tomorrow and I happened to see this page only today.

May 24, 2022 at 6:51 am

Hi ML! Apart from those documents, submit the following for your application. – Cover letter with details of your employment, financial, family and economic ties

Submit the following for your son’s application. – His birth certificate (to prove your relationship) – Consent letter from your son’s father – A sponsorship/cover letter with details about you, your employment, financial, family and economic ties, etc. (since you will take care of his expenses during the trip)

Oladimeji says

May 21, 2022 at 10:54 pm

Please I forgot to include my visit to the Republic of Cyprus when I was asked in my visa application what countries I’ve visited! I wasn’t refused a visa neither was I deported! But the stamps in and out are on my passport! Do I need a cover letter?

May 23, 2022 at 6:23 am

Hi Oladimeji! If you have considerable travel history, for example, 5 or more, then you don’t have to worry about not mentioning Cyprus. If you don’t have good travel history, then cancel your application and fill out a new one. You can get a full refund of the visa fee if you haven’t given your biometrics yet. And the cover letter is necessary either way.

January 31, 2022 at 2:59 pm

Hi, thank you for your helpful subject. I am a Ph.D. student in Canada, and I want to visit the UK over the summer holidays. Also, I have to come back to Canada again to continue my Ph.D. program. What documents do I need to include in my file to show that I am coming back after visiting the UK? Is that sufficient to include my admission letter from the university and my home lease contract? Thank you!

February 2, 2022 at 6:40 am

Hi Alec! An admission letter will not be sufficient. You need proof that you still have a certain number of semesters left and you have pre-paid your tuition for the future semesters. At least 1 or 2 semesters would be fine. A home lease contract also helps.

January 25, 2022 at 12:19 pm

Hello, thank you for such effort you’ve put into this blog site to help lots of people like me. I must confess I have learned alot from the post and reactions after it. I have a couple of questions though.

1. What is the sequence of UK online application for family of 5 going together to the UK for holiday .i.e. who’s application comes first? 2. What is the visa approval success rate for a spouse that is not working at the moment and going with her husband and kids to the UK for holiday? 3. Can the husband sponsor wife’s UK visa application/trip even though she’s employed?

January 26, 2022 at 5:49 am

Hi Sam! I appreciate the kind words! 1. Even though you all apply together, each application is assessed individually. You will have no control over whose application will be assessed first and in which order. The only thing you can do is to mention everyone else as their travel companions in each of your applications, and also in the cover letter. 2. The approvals are high as long as the husband can sponsor her application, prove the relationship and prove that she and her husband have strong ties with their country. 3. Yes, the husband can sponsor his wife’s UK visa application. There is no need for the wife to be working or employed.

December 14, 2021 at 4:25 pm

Hello, with regard to mentioning the Travel History in the Cover Letter. What if my previous passport already expired and got misplaced, hence, I am not able to provide a copy of the stamps for these. Do you think it will still add value or just completely leave out the travel history section? Grateful in advance for your response.

December 18, 2021 at 10:39 am

Hi Jamie! If you can’t prove your travel history, don’t mention it in the application.

December 7, 2021 at 3:51 pm

Hello, I’m employed and I’m a business owner, my bank statement reflects both my salary from my job and profit from my business. My question is what should I attach as proof? Payslips, business license, etc.? Thank you!

December 11, 2021 at 12:08 pm

Hi Julie! You must attach both, your payslips and business license. Also, explain clearly in your cover letter. In the future, separate your accounts otherwise you will continue to face problems with your visas.

November 30, 2021 at 10:56 am

Hi sir, I’m mills a police officer and I intend to travel to the UK for a conference on safety and security by next year. I need guidance on what documents I should attach to it apart from the mandatory requirements. Will it be necessary to add my marriage certificate, car and house paperwork?

December 2, 2021 at 3:44 pm

Hi Mills! Documents proving any kind of ties with your country are essential to make a strong case. Your marriage certificate will prove your family ties and house paperwork will prove your economic ties with your country. So yes, make sure to provide those two. Mentioning your car is not necessary.

October 17, 2021 at 5:02 am

Hello, I am applying for a UK returning residence visa to regain the status of my lapsed ILR. My question is should I write a cover letter with the application, if yes then to whom should I address the cover letter. Please quick response will be highly appreciated.

October 20, 2021 at 5:19 pm

Hi Navid! Unfortunately, my knowledge and experience are only in tourist visas. So I’m not sure if a cover letter is necessary for an ILR application.

Esther says

November 19, 2021 at 12:44 am

Dear THIRUMAL, I applied for a tourist visa to the UK and was approved. The next again I tried and was refused because the first information says I don’t have dependents and that’s because they don’t live with me. Now they live with me and depend on me but I didn’t realize then I should have included a cover letter. And we were all denied. What must I do because the children want to visit the UK on tourism? Thanks.

November 20, 2021 at 12:39 pm

Hi Esther! You already know your refusal reasons. Make sure to fix them in your re-application. Provide proof that you have dependents (family ties) and provide a detailed cover letter. Follow the instructions from this article for the cover letter.

September 28, 2021 at 1:25 pm

Hi Thirumal, I’m doing the application for a UK visa for my parents, both retired, and they live in Albania. Their pension is not a great amount of money and my siblings and I, we all contribute monthly to their financial situation of their living there. I’m covering all their expenses from the start to finish of their visit to the UK. I’ve prepared a cover letter from my part explaining their intention of coming in UK for Christmas and that I’ll be covering everything.

Their visas have been refused 2 times before. Now my concern is “On their cover letter should I explain their pension as an income and that their children give financial support on their living, or should we live this out of the cover letter.

I understand that their pension money only is not enough, and there is a section on the application asking about their salary and other forms of income and how much they spend monthly. this is a bit tricky for pensioners as they will have to spend all their money for their living in my country, and also the extra they get for us. Do we have to explain this in the cover letter? Will this still be an issue for the application?

Just to mention again I’ll be covering their expenses while travelling. They have savings as their own 4000Euro, which they have accumulated while they had worked previously, My mom had a small tailoring shop. Will this be enough for them? Thanks!

September 29, 2021 at 8:53 am

Hi Bruna! The UK visa application is mainly meant for employed individuals. The questions are not quite relevant to retired, students, housewives, children, etc. That’s where the question “extra information” and the cover letter come in handy.

In their cover letters, yes, mention that they rely on both their pension and support from their children. This is quite normal in most countries, so I don’t think it would be difficult for the ECO to understand.

For employment questions, they can mention that they are retired. If that option is not available, they can select unemployed. For the question on other income or savings, they can mention their monthly pension and support from children. It’s ok for the living expenses to be equal to their pension and support. This won’t hurt their visa approval as you will be sponsoring their trip.

For any trip expenses related questions, make sure they put zero for them since they will not personally spend anything on the trip.

Yes, it’s essential to mention all of these in their cover letters and a summary of them in “extra information”.

Yes, 4,000 euros of savings should be enough for them since they will not personally spend anything from their side on the trip. You will bear all their trip expenses.

Lastly, a couple of important things. – Most of the time, UKVI will not scrutinize retired applicants. So, no need to worry about their pension and savings. ECOs will mostly focus on your income and savings as you are sponsoring them. Make sure you have all the documents needed. Also, if you know the reasons why their previous visas were refused, let me know, so I can give your more accurate advice based on that. – Even after explaining everything in the cover letter, a lot of time ECOs make decisions based on the numbers like salary, savings, etc in the application. This is unfortunate, but when this happens, a lot of times, the applicants see success either with a PAP or reapplication.

August 28, 2021 at 9:32 am

Hi, I am from Srilanka, which is a red list country. I intend to apply for a UK visa to drop and settle my one and only son who is starting uni. Do you think a visit visa will be issued?

August 28, 2021 at 11:46 am

Hi H Ali! If your country is on the red list, your UK visa application will not be accepted by the VFS. Even if they accept your documents, UKVI will put your application on hold till Srilanka comes out of the red list.


August 28, 2021 at 7:24 am

For Canada tourist visa applied online; where does the cover letter fit in. Is it necessary only when we apply on paper?

August 28, 2021 at 11:44 am

Hi Pradeep! A cover letter is not mandatory for a Canada visa. But I usually recommend one since it’s the easiest way to convey information that’s not asked in the application. You can provide a cover letter for both online and paper applications. If applying online, you can upload the cover letter for “Letter of explanation of your trip”. Letter of explanation of your trip will be one of the items in document upload.

Quincy says

August 26, 2021 at 9:12 pm

Hello. Nice articles. I’ve been visiting here for more knowledge but I still have some doubts.

1. I am planning to apply for a visit visa, I have my employment contract (25 pages) and also a leave letter from my HR. Do I need to submit both documents or just the leave NOC letter from my HR is fine?

2. Is it also necessary to submit my house rental agreements?

3. Also I have been refused a US visa some years ago which I declared in my application. But do I have to submit a copy of my refusal letter in my UK application and specify this in the cover letter also?

I really need some clarity here and I would appreciate your response. Thanks.

August 28, 2021 at 11:38 am

Hi Quincy! 1. Both the Employment letter and leave approval letter are necessary. Employment letter will have details such as how long you have been employed with them, your salary, job duties, etc. Therefore, you need an employment letter too, not an employment contract. You can have your HR write a one-page employment letter for you. If you need a template, email me. 2. Yes. It will demonstrate your economic ties with your country. 3. No. You do not need to submit your US visa refusal letter. You also do not need to mention your US visa refusal in your cover letter.

Muhammad Sameer says

August 24, 2021 at 5:58 pm

Hey dear, I have a couple of questions to ask related to the UK visit visa application. Considering my family is applying where my father is the head, my mother is a housewife and I am a student. All my queries are stated below.

1) There is a question in the application which says how much money you intend to spend on this trip personally, so what should I write for my father, me and my mom. I cannot put zero in mine and my mum’s because it doesn’t allow it.

2) My father was refused a UK visa back in 2012, The application asks for it but he doesn’t have the refusal letter so what should I write in the application.

3) Me and my mum applied and got the visa last December but we couldn’t go due to red list issues and increased corona cases. So should I mention that in my application on why we didn’t travel even though we had the visa then?

August 25, 2021 at 8:12 am

Hi Muhammad! 1) Even though you are not personally spending on your trip, you must still enter the amount per individual. You can divide the total expense by 3 and enter that amount for each of you. 2) You can simply enter “ECO discretion” or “Do not remember the refusal reasons”. This will not hurt your visa result in any way. 3) Mentioning that you had a visa and could not use it will only work towards your benefit. So make sure to mention it in the “additional/extra information” within your application and also in your cover letter.

August 25, 2021 at 5:57 pm

So for instance, if my father is staying there for two months and me and my mom are going for twenty days so around how much money should I write for me, my mom and my father.

August 26, 2021 at 1:34 pm

I see. That’s a bit complicated. I suggest dividing the total expense by the amount of time spent in the UK by each. From your example, since your dad will spend 60days, you will spend 20days and your mom will spend 20days, divide the total budget by 60%, 20% and 20%. That should work.

August 26, 2021 at 1:38 pm

Actually I am confused on how much should I write for budget of my trip as my sister and brother-in-law in UK would be taking care of our accommodation, food and transport in UK.

August 28, 2021 at 11:48 am

If someone is sponsoring your trip, you will only enter the amount that you personally spend on your UK trip. For example, if they cover your accommodation, food and transportation and you will pay for shopping and souvenirs. Then you will enter the amount you will spend on shopping and souvenirs.

August 15, 2021 at 6:24 pm

Hi Thirumal, my UK visa application was refused. I want to apply again, but I have some doubts, could I contact you in any way, please? I would like to receive advice and help from you. Thanks.

August 16, 2021 at 4:04 am

Hi Mari! Sure. Please send me an email with your questions to [email protected] .

Michael says

August 12, 2021 at 8:44 pm

Hi, my graduation ceremony is in September and I intend to travel for it. Can you help me with how I should tailor my cover letter to the British embassy?

August 14, 2021 at 11:37 am

Hi Michael! Since you will be applying for a visitor visa, you must prove that you have strong ties with your country and you will return back after your trip. Therefore, most sections in this article will apply to your situation except the travel purpose. In the travel purpose section, you will mention that you will be traveling to the UK for your graduation ceremony.

Fathia says

August 2, 2021 at 4:35 pm

Good evening sir, I really like your articles and it has really helped me. My father is about to apply for my visa again. My question is that how do I explain the deposit in my account were gifts from family members. My visa was refused because they were other deposits in my account aside from my father’s deposits (he is the one sponsoring my trip).

August 3, 2021 at 7:31 am

Hi Fathia! If your father is sponsoring and he also deposited cash into your account, he can explain that in his sponsor letter. You can also explain the same in your cover letter. But for other large cash deposits, you must present evidence that the cash belongs to you. I have a detailed article on bank statements for UK visa . This article explains these in detail.

Ofori Bismark says

July 28, 2021 at 4:51 am

Please sir, my brother is in the UK has sent me an invite. I m in Ghana now so what documents do I need before I can apply for the visa?

July 29, 2021 at 5:14 am

Hi Ofori! There is a distinction between INVITATION and SPONSORSHIP. To know what documents you need for the UK visa, you would first need to understand that your brother is simply inviting you to visit him or sponsoring your trip. Below are the documents you will need.

Invitation – Your brother’s UK passport (or his home country passport) – Your brother’s UK residence permit (if he is not a UK citizen) – An invitation letter from your brother stating that he is inviting you to visit him in the UK

Sponsorship – Your brother’s UK passport (or his home country passport) – Your brother’s UK residence permit (if he is not a UK citizen) – A sponsorship letter from your brother stating that you will take care of all your trip expenses including accommodation, food and transportation – His apartment lease agreement – A utility bill on his name

Arinola says

July 17, 2021 at 10:42 am

Good morning sir, I like your articles and it has been really helpful, my question is that what if you are submitting 6 months bank statements and your employers paid you 3 months and owe you 3 months what will you do? Even if you have other transactions running in your salary account, can you still use the accounts? Or if the employer pays the 3months together, can you still use it. Thanks.

July 17, 2021 at 11:22 am

Hi Arinola! If you are getting paid irregularly, you need to explain this in your cover letter and provide documentary proof such as an explanation from your employer.

Nana poku says

May 24, 2021 at 12:07 pm

If you own a property with your uncle can you add that in your miscellaneous with the necessary documents? And if you provided a statement from 2020-2021 in your previous application can you reduce it to 6months in the next application

Do you have to write a cover letter to prove your bank statement or get an attestation from the bank if your employer deposit is not clearly indicated in the bank statement? What do you do when there is a different department that pays salaries of workers of your employer?

Thirumal says

May 25, 2021 at 5:25 am

Hi Nana! Yes, if you co-own a property with someone, you can provide the ownership document as proof of economic tie with your country. Bank statements must be for the latest 6 months. No need for statements from the previous application. The most recent 6 months should work fine.

Bank statements in some countries require an official attestation from the bank. You will know if that’s how bank statements are used in your country for all purposes. If your company name is different from the deposit transaction in your bank statements, you can explain it in your cover letter.

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How to write a detailed Cover Letter for UK Standard Visitor Visa

Cover Letter for UK Standard Visitor Visa

What is a Cover Letter for Visa?

A cover letter is an integral part of any visa application. It is a letter written by the applicant to express any personal intent in convincing the ECO (Entry Clearance Officer) that you are a genuine and credible applicant. In applying for UK Visa, it is rare that they will interview an applicant. A cover letter will be very useful in highlighting points and providing more information regarding the application.

What is a UK Standard Visitor Visa?

A UK Standard Visitor Visa is a Visa a foreign national need to acquire if they wish to visit the UK for up to short period of time or up to 6 months. You can check here if you need a visa . Tourism, visiting family members or friends, medical visit or short courses of up to 6 months fall under Standard Visitor Visa.

How to write a detailed Cover Letter for UK Standard Visitor Visa?

A compelling Cover Letter should be well sections or headed for easy understanding. It should include the following information about you and your circumstances.

  • Introduction and travelling companions’ details if you have any . A quick introduction of yourself, and the purpose of the letter is always an easy and clear way to start. It will give the Clearance Officer an overview of you, as the applicant. This is also the best part to tell about your travel companion (if you have any) who will apply the same time as you.
  • Reasons why you want to obtain UK Standard Visitor Visa . Examples for reason for visiting could be, tourism or visiting family and friends. It is very important to elaborate the reasons to make it easier for the case worker to understand. If you are visiting for tourism you can put things like ” I would like to visit UK as it has been always in my dream to explore the beautiful sights of London. I would also like to take the opportunity to celebrate my wife and I’s 10th year wedding anniversary.”. For family visit you can then say ” The main purpose of my visit is spend some time with my sister and her family. I would also like to attend my niece’s graduation. Whatever your reasons are just put it here and be honest with it.
  • Your Financial Situation . To prove you are a genuine visitor, showing evidence of your finances is a critical part of you application. Although you are submitting all the necessary documents with the application, it is still very important to highlight the means of your trip. If you have any deposits or any other source of income that’s not part of your salary then this is the best place to explain it. Money from parents, family members or from selling some belongings, its all good only if you can explain it. your caseworker don’t want any unexplainable money.
  • Intention and Reasons to return to your country of origin . This is also known as your strong ties to your home country. The Home Office would like to know you won’t overstay and to prove this you should be able to see your intention to go back to your country of residence. Work, family members, properties under your name, studying, businesses you own, these are all good reasons to leave the UK after your intended visit.
  • Travel History . Another good way to show you are a genuine visitor is to highlight your previous travels. It will give them the impressions that this trip is with good intention. You can say “Travelling is always something I like to do. I work really hard and going to different places is a way for me to recharge and enjoy life. In the last 5 years I have travelled to 5 countries, some with families and some of them were spent with friends. Attached is the copy of all my visa stamps”. It’s completely up to you to mention all or a few of those countries you have visited in the past.
  • Itinerary . This needs to be realistic financially and should coincide with your purpose of travel. If you say you’re travelling to the United Kingdom to spend some time with your family members it should show in your itinerary. Also, be mindful of your bank balance, although there is no specific amount of money needed for a tourist visa, it is important that your itinerary is believable. you can’t say you’ll be eating out at 5* restaurants every day and not having enough money for it.
  • Sponsor Details (if applicable). If this travel is self-sufficient, then this doesn’t apply to you. A sponsor is someone who will cover all or some expenses of your trip. It could be a family member who will finance you while you are in the UK, or a friend who will let you use his/her place for accommodation. Whatever and whoever is going to sponsor you should include their names, their relation to you, what are they willing to sponsor you with and their status in the UK. If the sponsor will provide you with accommodation, then they’ll have to submit their Tenancy Agreement if they are renting or Proof of Ownership if they own the property. If someone is sponsoring you financially then their Bank Statements is necessary and they have to specify in their Invitation Letter that amount they are willing to spend on you.
  • List of included documents (Optional). You’ll see the sample of my cover letter here that I didn’t include a list of included documents, but I know most people do. I felt like it will take up so much space from my cover letter. What I did though was create a separate page for my list of documents, this also serves as my table of contents. I’ll say this part is completely up to you.

Sample Cover Letter - UK Standard Visitor Visa

That’s it guys! I believe all these informations will help you get that Visa you so much deserve. Don’t forget to check out my 7 Best Things to do in London , when you arrive. Have fun on your travels!

This can also be use with any visa application to other counties as long as you edit the details accordingly.

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Sample Letter for UK Tourist Visa Application (2019 Cover Letter Template)

In this article, we are going to discuss how  you can write your UK visitor visa supporting letter in 2019.

This is because your goal is going to be the same whether you are applying for a UK, US, Canadian or a tourist visa for another country – to convince the person deciding your application that you will return to your home country and not overstay .

This is one of the most helpful things that you can do to increase your chances of a successful UK visitor visa application .

After all, the Home Office caseworkers are very suspicious people and you should do everything that you can to persuade them that you are a ‘genuine’ and ‘credible’ visitor.

There is no one set letter template that can be effectively used for all UK visitor visa applications since every application is different and unique to your own individual circumstances.

There are different aspects that your visit visa supporting letter should discuss and we will discuss each of them in turn:

  • An introduction / summary of your visit visa application
  • List of documents that you are including
  • The purpose of your visit
  • Why you will not overstay your UK visa
  • The dependants that you will be applying with (if any)
  • Your ability to adequately maintain yourself during your UK visit
  • Whether your sponsor meets the sponsor requirements (if you have one)
  • Confirmation that you are not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK your main home (if relevant)
  • Potential weaknesses in your application
  • Contact details of other relevant persons



My name is [NAME] and I am [NATIONALITY] . I am applying from [COUNTRY OF RESIDENCE] and I am applying for a standard [6 month/2 year/5 year/10 year] UK visitor visa.

In discussing that I am a genuine and credible UK visitor visa, this letter will cover:

  • A list of the supporting documents that have been submitted alongside this supporting letter

The purpose of my visit

  • Reasons why I will comply with the terms of the visa and why I will  not overstay
  • Information relating to  dependants applying with me (delete if appropriate)
  • My ability to adequately maintain myself [ and any dependants (if relevant) ] during intended UK trip
  • Information relating to my sponsor (delete if appropriate)
  • Why I am not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK my main home [( if relevant )]
  • Potential perceived weaknesses in my application
  • Contact details of other relevant persons you may wish to contact

Why is this section important?

This section provides a clear outline of the things that Home Office caseworkers are most interested in.

By providing a clear and relevant structure , you are immediately letting the Home Office caseworker know that you have a good understanding of the Immigration Rules as they apply to visitor visas.

It also makes it easier for the Home Office caseworker to read. The clearer and easier you make it for the Home Office caseworker, the happier that they will be.


List of included documents

In support of my UK visitor visa application, I have included the following documents:

The Home Office tend to lose documents quite often, unfortunately.

By stating that you list a certain documents, the Home Office caseworker will then know that the document may have indeed been lost on the way.

This increases the likelihood of the Home Office caseworker getting into contact and asking for the missing document .

By having something similar to the above table, you again increase the clarity and ease of reading for this cover letter.

The Home Office caseworker will be able to refer to this table to quickly identify the relevant document when considering your application and it will again provide good impression.


The main purpose of my visit is to [INSERT ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY] .

[Discuss what you intend to do in the UK in more detail here]

I am fully aware of the permitted and prohibited activities found in Immigration Rules Appendix V: visitor rules .

Example Itinerary #1

The main purpose of my visit is to attend my niece’s university graduation .

The following is my itinerary and includes the likely costings of the UK visit:

23rd May (Day 1)

Hopefully, I will be flying to London Heathrow from Bangkok, Thailand. As evidenced by the attached return flight tickets and return flight ticket receipts (Appendix 8 and 9), the cost of return of this flight is £884.

24th May (Day 2)

I will be picked up at the London Heathrow by my sister and will stay at her accommodation, 22b Iverson Road, London, NW6 2HE for two nights.

Please see the attached letter of support from my sister, which has been labelled Appendix 11.

Whilst I expect that I will spend around £30 on airport food, I will incur no costs for accommodation.

25th May (Day 3)

I will attend my niece’s graduation on this day, which is the main purpose of my trip to the UK.

The graduation is taking place at the University of Leeds campus.

We will travel from my niece’s accommodation in London to the University of Leeds by train, the expected cost of which is £80 for a return train ticket (see Appendix 13).

In support of these plans, please see the attached letter from my niece’s university (Appendix 5), confirmation of my niece’s graduation (Appendix 4) and the letter of support from my niece (Appendix 7).

Since the graduation is scheduled to finish at 11.30am, this will give us plenty time to enjoy a nice meal at our favourite restaurant, ‘Almost Famous’ in Leeds.  I will have £50 set aside for this meal.

Once we have arrived back in London, I will again stay at my sister’s accommodation, which will mean that I will incur no extra costs with regards to accommodation.

26th May (Day 4)

My last day is expected to start early in the morning as my sister will drive me to London Heathrow in time for my 8am flight back to Bangkok.

I have set aside £30 for food and drink at the airport.

The total expected cost for this trip is therefore £190 for my 4-day trip, not including the return flight tickets that I have already paid £884 for.

In light of my personal savings account at Appendix 17 that shows savings of £12,200 (as converted by, it is therefore clear that I can adequately provide for myself during my 4-day visit to the UK.

Example Itinerary #2:

The main purpose of my visit is to attend my niece’s university graduation.

The purpose of your visit is a key consideration when deciding whether the Home Office should grant your UK visitor visa application.

The clearer that your purpose for visiting the UK is, the more genuine and credible you will appear to be .

Because of this, it is therefore helpful if you are able to use this letter of support to clearly discuss your plans and the costs associated with the UK trip .

In this section of the letter of support, it will be good if you cross-reference your stated intentions with evidence that you submit in your application.

For example: I will be taking the train on the 25th May, 2020 from London Heathrow to Leeds train station, which will cost £80. Please see appendix 13 that shows this .

It will also be good to get letter of supports from family or friends that supports your stated intentions.

For example, if you are visiting a specific family member or friend in the UK, a letter of support from them will also be helpful to include.


Why I will not overstay the UK visitor visa

I fully intend to return to [my home country OR make an onwards journey to COUNTRY] before my UK visitor visa expires.

I have a good life back home and I would absolutely not want to trade it for a life as an outlaw in the UK.

The following are reasons that I would you to consider when deciding my application:

#1 My good immigration history

My unblemished UK immigration history is one indication that suggests that I am likely to comply with the terms of the UK visit visa and return to my home country prior to the visa expiration.

Example : “In 2012, I was issued a UK visitor visa for 6 months (see appendix 13 which is a copy of page 34 of my attached passport). In 2015, I was also issued a UK visitor visa (see Appendix 14 which is a copy of page 36 of my attached passport. In all of the above instances, I left before the expiration of the visa. I also complied with all of the visa conditions.”

#2 My family ties to my home country

My family back home is another strong indication that I will return to my home country prior to the UK visitor visa expiring.

[Discuss family members back home here, especially if they are dependant on you].

Example : My son, Jeremiah (13 years of age) and my daughter, Jodie (15 years of age), will stay in my home country of Bangladesh during my 9-day trip to the UK. Please see their attached passport scans at Appendix 8 and 9. During my UK visit, Jeremiah and Jodie will be cared for by my husband, Andy Jones, as evidenced by my husband’s letter of support at Appendix 14, which includes a copy of his passport at Appendix 15.

#3 My financial and economic ties to my home country

My financial and economic ties to my home country are other factors that strongly suggest that I have no reason to trade my life in [HOME COUNTRY] with a life as an illegal alien in the UK.

My assets and income are discussed in more detail below, under the sub-heading ‘My ability to adequately maintain myself in the UK’.

#4 Other links with my home country

Example : I am currently studying a degree at Chiang Mai University, Thailand. Please see the attached letter from my university at Appendix 6 that confirms this. Please also see the attached term dates for my course at Appendix 7 that confirms that my intended trip to the UK is not during term-time but rather during the summer holidays.

The main reason why visit visa applications are refused is that the Home Office are scared that you will use the UK visitor visa to enter the UK,  disappear and overstay your visa illegally .


Dependants I am applying with (if relevant)

As stated in the online application form, I am applying with child dependant(s), [NAME(S) AS STATED IN PASSPORT(S), AGE(S) & THEIR RELATIONSHIP TO YOU] .

Obviously, if you are not applying with any child dependants, you can ignore this sub-heading .

However, if you are applying with child dependants, it is important that you are fully aware of the additional requirements that will apply.

In summary, you must show:

#1 That you (or your sponsor) will be able to adequately provide for any child dependants that are also applying for a UK visitor visa.

This is obviously linked with your ability to adequately maintain yourself – i.e. by the showing of assets and income.

In order to maintain a clear structure for this letter of support, you should make sure you sufficiently discuss your finances in the subheading ‘My ability to adequately maintain myself during the UK visit’ below.

#2 That all duties of care obligations with regards to child dependants will be met

Simply showing sufficient financial assets and income will not always suffice.

If, in light of all the circumstances, it is not clear how the child’s welfare will be looked after in the UK, it is likely that the application will be refused .

Like many UK visa applications, the child’s welfare is of an extremely high importance .

#3 That parental consent is given

Parental consent is a requirement for children’s UK visitor visas.

This requirement is usually satisfied where the visit visa applications are made on behalf of a child, although i t is important that you are aware of the situations where the requirement will not be met .

If you are divorced with your child’s other parent, the parent with sole responsibility or legal custody must provide parental consent, which can be met via a letter of support.


My ability to adequately maintain myself during the UK visit

I confirm that I can adequately maintain myself [as well the dependants who are applying with me] . To support this, I will now discuss my sources of income and financial assets.

#1 My sources of income

#2 My assets and/or cash savings

#3 My on-going financial commitments

Example : I am employed as a journalist for The Daily Paper Company in Pakistan. I receive a gross annual salary of PKR 3,000,000 and I have permission from my employer to have paid leave for the week that I will be visiting the UK (see Appendix 8, which is a signed letter from my employer). For clarity, PKR 3,000,000 equates to 15,102 pounds sterling, as stated by the closing spot exchange rate found on . As evidenced by my attached bank statements (see Appendix 3), I saved a total of PKR 1,500,000 over the past 8 months to help fund my UK visit. This is the equivalent of £7,550 pounds sterling. I also own my own house in Pakistan. Please see the attached documentation (Appendix 11-13) for 12 Wahdat Road, Lahore. The property’s worth, as stated on, is PKR 13,000,000 (Appendix 14).

It is crucial that you are able to convince the Home Office caseworker that you have sufficient resources to maintain and accommodate yourself adequately for the whole of your planned visit to the UK.

This includes the additional costs associated with applying with any dependant children.

If the expected cost of the visit is high when compared to your overall resources (or your sponsor’s overall resources), then questions may be raised regarding the genuineness of your intentions .

Unlike a UK spouse visa , there are no set rules regarding the amount of funds that you (or your sponsor) will need to show.

For example, there is no rule saying that an income of £10,000 is required or cash savings of £5,000 or more.

Instead, the Home Office caseworker will look at your circumstances (and your sponsor’s circumstances, if you have one) and your stated intentions and then make a decision based on that.

At the very minimum, it is clear that you have to prove that you can afford:

I) The cost of travelling to and from the UK ;

II) Any costs associated with applying with dependant children ;  and

III) What you say you intend to do in the UK (e.g. shopping or visiting a family in London).

There are a few points to note regarding evidencing assets and income .

Firstly, both your supporting letter as well as the documents that you submit should make the source of cash savings clear.

If your personal bank account shows a sudden and relatively large injection of cash into your bank, this may seem suspicious.

Secondly, you should make it clear that you can access  to the cash savings.


My sponsor (include this sub-heading only if you have one)

I am being sponsored by [ SPONSOR’S NAME ], who is my [ RELATIONSHIP TO APPLICANT ]. As evidenced by the attached documentation, [ SPONSOR’S NAME ]’s [ASSETS/INCOME] is more than enough to adequately provide for myself [and my dependant children who are applying with me] during my stay in the UK.

I can confirm that the relationship between [ SPONSOR’S NAME ] and I is genuine. Please see the attached documentation regarding this, as well as the attached letter of support from [ SPONSOR’S NAME ] that confirms [ HIS/HER ] intention to sponsor me.

  • Whether the relationship is personal or professional
  • How you met,
  • Where you first met,
  • How often you meet,
  • How often you communicate with each other]


Why I am not using frequent and successive visits to make the UK my home (include this sub-heading if you have previously been issued a UK visitor visa only)


Potential weaknesses in my application

Include this section only if there are any potential weaknesses in your application.

I recognise that [ REASON 1 ] can raise doubts about the genuine and credibility as a visitor.

[Discuss this here and explain why that should not adversely affect your UK visitor visa application]

I recognise that [ REASON 2 ] can raise doubts about the genuine and credibility as a visitor.

Example : In 2016 I was previously refused a UK visitor visa on the grounds that I was not able to adequately show that I can maintain myself. Please see appendix 3, which is a copy of this refusal letter. It was unfortunate that important financial documents, such as employer pay slips and bank statements, were not received by the Home Office – hence not being able to show that I could have adequately maintained myself. In any event, one month after receiving the refusal letter, I submitted another UK visitor visa application. Fortunately, the Home Office received all of the supporting documents and my UK visitor visa application was swiftly approved. In light of this, my previous UK visitor visa refusal should not adversely affect this application as not only have I shown adequate funds to cover my trip to the UK in this application, but the reason for the previous refusal does not apply to my case.

It is important to directly address the potential weaknesses of your application.

This is because Home Office caseworkers are trained specifically to identify weaknesses in applications.


Relevant contact details

I can appreciate that you may want to contact my friends and family.

If you would like to do so, the following are some friend and family member’s contact information:






If you would like to contact any other individuals or organisations and I have not provided their contact details, please feel free to get in touch and I will be more than happy to provide them.

In some cases, the Home Office caseworker may want to contact relevant third parties in your application in order to validate information to help decide whether they think you are a genuine and credible visitor.

Hopefully you found this article helpful.

Spending time writing a comprehensive covering letter is certainly a worthwhile activity as it is the best place for you to discuss relevant pieces of information in detail.

When writing the covering letter, remember:

  • Using simple, straightforward English is best .
  • Try to keep the contents of your supporting letter as relevant as possible
  • When you can, cross-refer to documentation throughout your supporting letter
  • As long as the structure of the letter is clear, it is worthwhile discussing different aspects of your application in great detail .

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Writing a covering letter to the Home Office

When you send an application to the home office, it is good to write a covering letter to send with it. in this letter, you can write down what kind of application you are making, which documents you are sending with it and why you think you meet the requirements set out in the rules. we recommend that any letters sent to the home office should be sent by recorded delivery. if you are sending important original documents, these should be sent by special delivery..

What you will need to include in this letter will depend on your individual case. However, below is a template with some ideas.  You can also download this template as a word document here .

Home Office address (in full)                                                                   Your address (in full)

Date: insert

Home Office Reference: insert

Recorded delivery reference: insert

Dear Sir/Madam, Your name, date of birth and nationality

Name, date of birth and nationality of each dependant

Repeat the Home Office Reference

I wish to make an application for [insert type of leave you wish to apply for and which rule/policy you are applying under].

[List the documents you are sending with the application. This helps to show the type of evidence you have to support your case.]

I enclose the following:

  • Application form;
  • Original, valid passport (number [insert] )
  • Witness statement dated [insert date];

[List everything else you have enclosed]

Fees / Fee waiver / Fee exempt

[If you are applying for a fee waiver ( see here for our fact sheet for further information ) you need to completed and enclose the fee waiver application form along with your application for leave to remain. You should also explain how you meet the requirements for a fee waiver or why you are fee exempt here.]

[Include information about your/your family’s immigration history. You should explain why you are seeking to apply for/extend your leave to remain. If there are any compassionate aspects of your case (e.g. mental health problems/abuse or neglect/bereavement) it is important to explain them here.]

[Set out the rule/policy you are applying under and write underneath how you meet the rule. FOR EXAMPLE (please note that this is an example only, DO NOT just copy this because you will need to identify which rule applies to your case and include information specific to you):

Paragraph 276ADE. The requirements to be met by an applicant for leave to remain on the grounds of private life in the UK are that at the date of application, the applicant:

(i) does not fall for refusal under any of the grounds in Section S-LTR 1.2 to S-LTR 2.3. and S-LTR.3.1. in Appendix FM; and

I have no previous convictions and I am of good character. I do not fall within any of the exclusions.

 (iv) is under the age of 18 years and has lived continuously in the UK for at least 7 years (discounting any period of imprisonment) and it would not be reasonable to expect the applicant to leave the UK; or

I am 17 years old and I have lived in the UK since I was 9 years old. It would not be reasonable for me to leave the UK because I have lived here for a very long time. I have been to primary and secondary school here in the UK. As I have explained in my witness statement, I do not know anyone in [the country of your nationality] and all of my friends and family are here…]

[ Please see here for our fact sheets which   provide further information about some of the rules and policies.]

The best interests of child[ren]

[Explain here why it would be in the best interests of your child for you/them to remain in the UK. If you have any evidence to support this (e.g. letters from teachers, doctors or nurses), then refer to the evidence here. Refer to the Home Office’s obligation to ‘have regard to the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children’ and to their duty to consider children’s best interests as a primary consideration.]

[ Please see here for our fact sheet about children’s best interests.]

Rights under Article 8 ECHR

[Explain why it would breach your rights/your family’s rights under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (right to respect for private and family life) if you/your family were removed from the UK.]

[ Please see here for our fact sheets  about rights under Article 8. ]

[If you make an application on the basis of your human rights protected by Article 8 ECHR and it is refused, you may not get an in-country right of appeal if the Home Office decides that your case is ‘clearly unfounded’. This means that your case clearly does not meet the rules/ policy and is bound to fail. If you are not given an in-country right of appeal, you have to leave the UK and appeal the refusal from somewhere else. The Home Office has stated that this should not apply if your application relies on a British child, a child who has lived in the UK for at least seven years, or if there are exceptional circumstances which mean that family life cannot continue outside of the UK or that it is in a child’s best interest to remain in the UK. An application based on Article 8 ECHR should not be certified if you are extending your leave to remain. If you are concerned that your case may be certified as clearly unfounded, you should set out why you should be granted an in-country right of appeal if your application is refused here.]

Access to public funds

[Even if you are granted leave to remain, you will normally not be allowed to access public funds. For some types of leave (for example, if you are applying on the basis of your family or private life on the ’10 year route to settlement’), you can ask to be given access to public funds. If you already have leave to remain and you are applying to extend it, and you currently have access to public funds, you will need to explain that you still need public funds for your next grant of leave. If you are granted leave without access to public funds, and you need to apply for access, please see here for further information . You will need to provide evidence of why you need access to public funds and you should explain how you meet the requirements here.]

[Explain why you believe you/your family should be granted leave to remain in the UK. Emphasise any compassionate circumstances and request that the application is considered as soon as possible.]

Yours faithfully,

Your signature

For more help with making your own application,  click here .

Has this information helped you? Please tell us what you think by clicking here .



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