Immigration Health Surcharge

The Immigration Health Surcharge is a mandatory fee of £470 per year, charged to visa applicants who plan to stay in the UK for more than six months.

What is the charge for?

The charge is to ensure that temporary migrants contribute to the cost of the National Health Service (NHS). The money collected is not a visa application charge and will go to the NHS, not the UKVI.

Who needs to pay the IHS?

Applications for a visa for less than 6 months are not subject to this charge. Australian, New Zealand nationals, as well as British Nationals Overseas Territories Citizens resident in the Falkland Islands are also not subject to the charge. Citizens of all other countries applying for a visa for the UK are affected.

I am an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen, do I still need to pay this charge?

Yes, as an EU/EEA/Swiss citizens you will have to pay the IHS as part of your student visa application. However, if your residency in the UK starts/started before 31 December 2020, you will not need to apply for a student visa or pay the IHS.

How much will I need to pay?

You will need to pay £470 per year, as will each of your dependants. The IHS payment is a requirement of the visa application. You would have to pay the IHS for your whole duration of your stay in the UK upfront.

Which treatments does the Immigration Health Surcharge cover?

All students that have paid the immigration health charge will be eligible for NHS treatment in the same way as permanent UK residents. This means most treatment is free, however some services such as dental treatment and prescription charges are not covered. Find out what treatments are covered by the NHS.

Do I still have to pay the IHS if I have paid for private medical insurance?

Yes, the IHS is mandatory.

If my visa application is refused, will I be refunded the immigration health charge?

The UKVI should automatically refund the IHS fee in the event of a visa refusal. Refunds usually take 28 days to be processed.

If I change my mind after my visa has been granted and decide not to come to the UK, will my health charge be refunded?

No, the charge will not be refunded in these instances.

If I never use the NHS during my time in the UK, will I receive a refund of the IHS?

No, the IHS will not be refunded if you do not use the NHS.

What happens if I apply for another visa?

If your new period of permission overlaps with the permission that you were previously granted then you will be entitled to a refund of the surcharge for this overlapping period of time, but only if you have paid the surcharge twice for the same period of time.

How can I calculate exactly how much the IHS will be for me?

You can calculate your IHS prior to making your visa application by using the UKVI’s online tool.