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Ultimate Guide to UK Working Holiday Visa – Youth Mobility Scheme visa (Tier 5)

By Kach Umandap February 16th, 2022 Posted in Europe Travel Blog, Travel Blog, VISA Application Guides One Comment

Do you want to see the Queen? Or pass the London Bridge? See Big Ben? Ride London’s eye? Feel like 007, that’s James Bond btw? If that’s a yes, then you will love going to the United Kingdom, especially with the UK working holiday visa! How about if I tell you that you can all do those things and earn money? It’s a double yes! Who wouldn’t love making money while traveling?

Ultimate Guide to UK Working Holiday Visa
Photo by Yulian Alexeyev



Well, there is a program in the United Kingdom called the Youth Mobility Scheme – a Tier 5 visa. In the Tier 5 visa – Youth Mobility Scheme, a person from selected countries aged 18 to 30 can live, work or study in the UK for up to two years. Do you want to know if you are eligible? Read here and find out!

Recap first; the United Kingdom is composed of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland; so you can choose wherever you want to live.

Who can apply for a Tier 5 – Youth Mobility Scheme visa?

Citizens of the following countries:

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


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

You must be selected in the Youth Mobility Scheme ballot before you can apply for your visa if you’re from:

  • Hong Kong
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan

Must be: Aged 18 to 30

  • Must be 18 or over at the time entry clearance becomes valid for use
  • Under the age of 31 on the date, they make their application

Not allowed 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

Required Documents

Ultimate Guide to UK Working Holiday Visa
Photo by Marcin Nowak
  • Valid Passport (at least one blank page)or other valid travel ID
  • Bank stamen with at least £1,890 in savings
    Must show:

    • Name, Account Number and Type, Date of Statement, Financial Institution’s Name and Logo, Funds of at least £1,890

    • If it is electronic, a supporting letter from the bank confirming the authenticity of the statement or an electronic bank stamen bearing the official stamp of the bank

  • Tuberculosis (TB) results if you are from a required country
  • For South Koreans – Get a certificate of sponsorship –  unique reference number that holds information about the job you will do and your personal details, apply within 3 months after receiving the reference number
  • If a document is not in English or Welsh, provide a certified translation

When can you apply?

The earliest you can apply for a visa is 6 months before your travel. A decision is made within 3 weeks or more depending on the country

How much is the fee?

The cost is £244 to apply plus health care surcharge.

If you are rejected, your visa application fee is nonrefundable. However, health care surcharge will be credited back

Steps By Step Guide in Applying for UK Working Holiday Visa

Step 1: Apply Online

  • Click this link
  • Select a country where you will provide your biometrics and check the locations
  • Fill out your online application (Make sure to know your Parent’s Name, Birthdate, Birthplace, Nationality)
  • Pay the £244 fee plus health care surcharge

Step 2: Get Biometrics

Proceed to the Visa Application Center to get your fingerprints and photo taken
Bring the following documents:

  • Passport
  • Application form
  • Supporting documents
  • Proof of Payment

Step 3: Get your Visa

  • After processing, you will receive an e-mail about the decision
  • If it is approved, collect it in the center where you passed or wait for your mail (if you chose that option)
  • Your visa allows you 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.

Step 4: Collect Biometric Residence Permit 

  • Within 10 days of arriving in the UK, collect your BRP
  • Check your decision letter as it will tell you either a named Post Office branch or your sponsor
    What to bring:

    • Passport or travel sticker with your vignette sticker (given when your visa application is approved)

More information with your Tier 5 Visa

Things you can do with your Tier 5 Visa

  • Study – for some courses you’ll need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme certificate
  • Work in most jobs
  • Be self-employed and set up a company – as long as your premises are rented, your equipment is not worth more than £5,000, and you do not have any employees

Things you cannot do with your Tier 5 Visa

  • Work as a professional sportsperson (for example as a coach), doctor or dentist in training – unless you can show you qualified in the UK
  • Extend your stay
  • Get public funds
  • Bring in family members on your application – they must apply separately

Where to find jobs in the UK?


You can Google jobs in UK or Working Holiday Visa Jobs – It will range from being a wait staff, attendant, personal assistant, host, sales associate, and many more. You can do some research before your visa application or maybe apply so that when you arrive you can work as soon as possible.

If you don’t have much experience, don’t worry as there are a lot of basic jobs out there that you can learn from. However, if you have one, you can use your knowledge and skills to your advantage.

Recruitment Agencies

If you don’t know what to do or can’t find one on the internet, you can try going to recruitment agencies as they are experts in pairing you up with a good company.


Applying in person is quite a tedious process; handing out CVs to stores or offices that you don’t know if they are hiring or not. However, sometimes, you get to choose the stores and identify their locations plus they can interview you on the spot if you’re lucky.

Additional Tips in the UK

  • You may need Bank Accounts or Social Security Number in the UK, you may ask your employer (if you have one) what is required so that you can process it immediately when you arrive
  • Apply for a job that you are good at or passionate about or keen on learning so that it wouldn’t be boring
  • If you want to study, make sure to check with the school regarding the payments and documents
  • Learn to budget your money; rent a cheap place or share a flat
  • Don’t forget to make new friends and enjoy the culture in the United Kingdom.
Ultimate Guide to UK Working Holiday Visa
Photo by Sander Crombach

Being in another country and culture is an eye-opener and a great opportunity, so if you are eligible and have savings, try it. I hope you find this post very helpful in knowing more about UK Working Holiday Visa. You can also read Countries with Working Holiday Visa Program (article 55) to check more options. Happy travels!

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One thought on “Ultimate Guide to UK Working Holiday Visa – Youth Mobility Scheme visa (Tier 5)

  1. Dear sir,

    I am currently in UK and want to apply the UK Working Holiday Visa.

    I have checked all the requirements and found that I am eligible for applying the visa.

    As I am holding BN(O) Passport and in UK currently, can I apply the UK Working Holiday Visa in UK as I don’t want to go back to HK in this moment and my visitor visa is about to expire.

    Your prompt reply is much appreciated.



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Written by Kach Umandap

Founder of Two Monkeys Travel Group. Since 2013, Kach has visited all the 7 continents (including Antarctica) and 151 countries using her Philippines Passport. In 2016, she bought a sailboat and went on sailing adventures with her two cats - Captain Ahab & Little Zissou in the Caribbean for 2 years. She now lives in Herceg Novi, Montenegro where she's enjoying her expat life and living on a gorgeous Stonehouse. She writes about her experiences traveling as a Filipina traveler with a PHL Passport. Also tips on backpacking trips, luxury hotel experiences, product reviews, sailing & adventure travel.