Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa

If you wish to apply for a visa in this category then our team at Hunter Stone Law will be able to guide and assist you throughout every step of the process. In order to qualify for this visa you would have to meet the requirement of the relevant section of the Immigration Rules. However we have attempted to simplify the requirements below.

You can apply for a Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa if you:

  • want to live and work in the UK for up to 2 years
  • are aged 18 to 30
  • have £1,800 (£1,890 from 1 July) in savings
  • have certain types of British nationality
  • meet the other eligibility requirements

You need to be sponsored if you’re from Hong Kong, the Republic of Korea or Taiwan.

You’ll be given a visa to live and work in the UK for up to 24 months.   You can enter the UK at any time while your visa is valid, and leave and come back at any time during your stay. If you turn 31 while you’re in the UK, you can stay for as long as your visa is valid.


You can apply for a Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa if you’re aged 18 to 30 and you’re from:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Japan
  • Monaco
  • New Zealand
  • Hong Kong
  • Republic of Korea
  • Taiwan

You can also apply if you’re 18 to 30 and a:

  • British overseas citizen
  • British overseas territories citizen
  • British national (overseas)

You can’t apply if you have:

  • children who live with you
  • children you’re financially responsible for
  • already been in the UK under the scheme or in the former ‘working holidaymaker’ category


You must have £1,890 from 1 July in savings.

Sponsorship - citizens of Hong Kong, the Republic of Korea and Taiwan

You must get a certificate of sponsorship reference number before you apply. A certificate of sponsorship is a unique reference number that holds information about the job you will do and your personal details. It’s not a certificate or paper document. You must apply for your visa within 3 months of receiving your certificate of sponsorship.

Get a certificate of sponsorship

Apply for a certificate of sponsorship in:

  • Hong Kong
  • Republic of Korea
  • Taiwan

Documents you must provide

When you apply you’ll need to provide:

  • a current passport or other valid travel ID
  • a passport size colour photograph
  • a bank statement showing you have at least £1,800 (£1,890 from 1 July) in savings
  • your tuberculosis (TB) test results if you’re from a country where you have to take the test
  • You must have a blank page in your passport - this is where the visa will go.

You may need to provide additional documents depending on your circumstances.

Application process

If you’re applying from outside the UK then you must apply online for this visa. You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.

You must still be from one of the eligible countries to get this visa, even if you’re applying from another country.

What you can and can’t do

You can:

  • study
  • work in most jobs
  • be self-employed and set up a company - as long as your premises are rented, your equipment isn’t worth more than £5,000 and you don’t have any employees

You can’t:

  • work as a professional sportsperson (eg as a coach), doctor or dentist in training - unless you can show you qualified in the UK
  • switch into another visa category
  • extend your stay
  • get public funds
  • bring in family members on your application - they must apply separately