Processing of UK Visa Applications

Due to the prioritisation of applications under the Ukraine Visa Scheme coupled with post-COVID recovery, UK Visa & Immigration (UKVI) centres around the world have seen an increase in global travel and visa applications. 

The public is advised that UK Transit & Visit visas, including standard Visitor visa applications, are currently taking on average seven weeks to process. Some applications might take longer depending on the complexity of applicants’ circumstances.

The UKVI teams are working hard to process applications to return to the three-week service processing time.  To find out more on processing times for the different types of UK visas, visit: Visa decision waiting times: applications outside the UK – GOV.UK (

Customers wishing to apply for a UK visa from St Helena should visit: for guidance on how to apply online.

Processing of British Overseas Territories Citizen (BOTC) and British Citizen (BC) Passports

The public is advised that processing of passports can take up to 15 weeks, with some complex applications taking longer.  

Applications will take longer if HM Passport Office need to request more information or documents, or where passport photographs are rejected.  Customers may be asked to attend an interview where necessary. 

Please also note that at present there are some delays in receiving cargo via Johannesburg due to flights being full to capacity, which will increase the period in which passports are returned.

You are advised not to book any travel until you have a valid passport. If you need to travel more urgently, you may be able to apply for an Emergency Travel Document (ETD)

For further information on ETDs, please contact the Immigration Section of the Safety, Security & Home Affairs Portfolio on telephone: 22287.


6 September 2022

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470