The costs and process of moving to the UK


My partner and I started our journey to permanently move to the UK back in 2014. We were originally from the Philippines where I worked as an Oracle solutions architect for consulting companies, while my partner was with a large conglomerate as a corporate lawyer.

The initial route we took was Tier 2 (General) for myself, and Tier 2 (General) Dependant for my partner. We spent five years on this route, and have then applied for and have successfully been granted Indefinite Leave to Remain (which entitles us to permanent residency in the UK). As of the time of writing in 2020 we are working towards applying for naturalisation which will grant us British citizenship.

I didn’t originally think it was very interesting, however over the years many people have asked us similar questions such as:

  • Why did you choose the UK?
  • What was the process like?
  • How much did it cost?
  • What documents did you need to provide?
  • How long did it take?

We’ve decided to write down our experiences in hopes that it will help people who have also or are planning to move to the UK.

Moving to the UK is not a straightforward process. It is difficult and it is important that you understand the rules and prepare accordingly in order to be successful in your application. Countries limit immigration1 to protect the interests of their own citizens (as they should), and the UK is no exception. This leads to very selective immigration policies which favour people who can demonstratively prove that they can positively contribute to the good of the country.

Preparation is key: we hope that this can arm you with an idea of what the process looks like, and help you plan and be ready for when you undertake it.

This series is divided into several chapters which detail major milestones in our journey. At the end of each page you’ll find links that will take you to the next chapter or back to the previous one, as well as a link to the table of contents which lists each chapter in sequence.

If there are any problems with this page, be it in terms of factual inaccuracies, mistakes in spelling or grammar, technical website issues — anything at all — I would truly appreciate it if you let me know here so that I can get it corrected.

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