I was sitting in my office having lunch with a friend I hadn't seen in a long time. She and I went to thesame secondary school and we remained in touch until she left for the UK in 1999. My girl came back looking really different. I can safely say living abroad has done her good. Anyway, there we were catching up on lost time, when I heard something on TV that totally stopped my discussion with dear friend. What is this I'm hearing? The British government has effected increase in it's visa application fees. It wasn't just that they increased it, but how much they increased it to.
This is the new visa fee
The Direct Airside Transit Visit, which was formerly N7, 800 is now N11, 450
Six months visa from N13, 000 to N16, 400
Students visa from N22, 000 to N25, 750
Now, longer term visit of N22, 000 is now N52, 000
Work permit which attracted N22, 000 is now N52, 000
While Highly Skilled Migrant Programme formerly N22, 000 now also attracts N52, 000
Just as settlement visa fee which was N67, 000 is now N130, 000
Can you guys imagine this? I'm not against increase, they must have their reasons, (They said something about wanting to provide a modern, effective service to Nigerians) I don't have a problem with that but increase from 22grand to 52grand is stretching it a bit too far isn't it? Nigerians who want to go to the UK do not only have airfare to contend with, but also a high visa fee. But I trust my Naija people, no amount of money will stop them from going after what they want.
By the way, this new fees take effect from Sunday April 1st 2007.