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One essential aspect of relocating to London from the US, Canada, or anywhere outside the UK or EU for that matter is getting yourself over the border legally. 🙂

“I” is for IMMIGRATION!

Sometimes our staff receives enquiries from those who are rather early in their relocation process. They want to move here, but they’re not quite to the stage where they ought to already be looking for a London apartment. Among the helpful resources we often recommend in such cases are the following links to websites related to UK visas, policies, and such, as well as where you can locate your relevant national embassy in London:

UK Border Agency
UK Home Office
Direct.gov.uk
Directory of Consulates & Embassies

Also, among the slew of posts I’ve written on relocation essentials, among them are the recently revised UK visa restrictions on professionals, finding employment, to help procure that UK visa, and frustrated personal anecdotes of having to replace my own passport and visa when they were stolen in London (argh!):

the visa verdict
finding jobs in London
replacing a lost US passport and UK visa

No doubt, the UK government is tightening its clamps on who can cross its borders and contribute to its economy and culture as a resident. You’ll want to make sure you do your research to understand which type of UK visa applies to you, whether you qualify for it, what the parameters are for utilizing/maintaining it, and what services your local embassy can provide for you as a citizen of another nation residing in the UK (replacing lost/stolen passports and obtaining extra passport pages are probably the most common ones needed). Educate yourself and play by the rules; I’ve seen enough documentary shows on immigration on the telly here to know you don’t want life to imitate an episode of UK Border Force. 🙂