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The 28 Day Rule

When you apply for a UK Student Visa, you must provide evidence that you can support yourself financially during your studies. Self-financed students are required to submit bank statements containing sufficient funds to cover tuition fees and living expenses. The funds must be held in the bank account for a minimum of 28 days, so make sure you transfer the funds in plenty of time if necessary.

This article explains how to calculate the minimum amount needed and how to satisfy the 28 Day Rule.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much money will I need in my bank account?

If your course is longer than 9 months, you will need sufficient funds to pay your first year tuition fees in full, plus a maintenance allowance of at least £9,207 (£12,006 in London) for accommodation and living expenses.

If your course is less than 9 months, you will need sufficient funds to pay your tuition fees in full, plus a maintenance allowance of £1,023 per month1 (£1,334 in London) for the duration of your course.

What if I have already paid some or all of my fees?

If you have already paid some of your tuition fees, you will only have to prove you can pay the remaining balance. The institution sponsoring your visa application will provide you with a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS), which will show the total tuition fees due and any payments already made.

If you pay for your accommodation in advance, the maintenance allowance requirement will be reduced, but only up to a maximum of £1,334 and ONLY if the fees are paid directly to the institution that issues your CAS. If you have arranged accommodation through a private provider, you will not be able to claim this reduction.

How can I convert my home currency into GB Pounds?

The Entry Clearance Officer who decides your application will use the exchange rate published on this web site - www.oanda.com.

Important: the Entry Clearance Officer will use the exchange rate on the date you submit and pay for for your visa application. So you should make sure your account contains more than the minimum amount required, in case the exchange rate changes.

How can I prove I have sufficient funds?

You will be required to submit a bank statement with your visa application. There are strict rules about the type of bank statements that are allowed and their format. Please see our bank statements checklist for further information.

How does the '28 day rule' work?

The balance in your account must not fall below the minimum required for a 28 consecutive days, up to and including the date of the closing balance. Furthermore, you must submit and pay for your visa application within 31 days of the date of the closing balance. If the balance falls below the minimum, even for part of a single day, or you submit and pay for your application more than 31 days after the date of the final transaction, your visa application will be refused.

Can I use more than one bank statement?

If you do not have sufficient funds in a single bank account, you can combine bank statements from different accounts to meet the 28 day rule. In that case, the combined balance must not fall below the minimum required for a period of 28 days, up to and including the date of the closing balance on the most recent bank statement.

What if I cannot satisfy the '28 day rule'?

What if you have the necessary funds, but they have not been held for a full 28 days before you apply for your visa? In that case, you must not apply for your student visa, as your application will be refused. But there are some things you can do.

  • If you pay your tuition fees in full, your bank statements will only need to show sufficient funds to meet your accommodation and living expenses.
  • If you still have insufficient funds, you may be able to pay up to £1,334 towards your accommodation fees to further reduce the amount required.
  • If you still have insufficient funds, then you will have no option but to wait before applying for your visa. Many courses start with an induction or enrolment week before classes start, so it may be possible to arrive late. Alternatively, you may be able to start at a later date, as many of the courses on our website have start dates throughout the year.

If you are having difficulties, please contact your student advisor for advice as soon as possible!

I am staying with family in the UK, do I still need to show the maintenance amount?

Yes. The calculation of the minimum amount is exactly the same, even if you are planning to stay with family members in the UK.

Also In This Section

Further Information

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1 Part months are rounded up. For example, if your course starts 15 January and ends 15 June, that will count as 6 months (even though the elapsed time is only 5 months).

Disclaimer: The information provided in this section is for guidance only. You should always check with the UK Government's Website (Visas & Immigration) for the latest information before applying for a student visa. Failure to follow the correct procedures is likely to result in your application being refused and could affect your ability to obtain a visa in the future.

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