UK Hospitality: Bridging Staff Shortages with Visa Options

Hospitality and catering sector | immtell

The UK government has implemented several immigration hospitality visa options to help fill the resourcing gaps in the hospitality sector by attracting talent from overseas. Some of these options include:

  1. Skilled Worker Visa: The Skilled Worker Visa is designed for people who have been offered a skilled job in the UK. To be eligible, applicants must have a job offer from a UK employer and score enough points based on their salary, job offer level, and English language skills. Some roles in the hospitality sector, such as chefs, bar managers, hotel managers, and restaurant managers, may qualify for this visa.
  2. Temporary Worker – Seasonal Worker Visa: This visa is for individuals who want to come to the UK for seasonal work, such as in agriculture or hospitality industries during peak seasons. This visa allows workers to stay in the UK for up to six months, helping to address short-term labour shortages in the hospitality sector.
  3. Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS): The YMS is open to young people (aged 18-30) from certain countries who want to live and work in the UK for up to two years (or three years if a New Zealand national). This scheme can be a source of talent for the hospitality sector, as it allows young people to work in any type of job, including those in the hospitality industry.
  4. Global Business Mobility Visa – Senior or Specialist Worker: This visa allows employees of multinational companies to be transferred to a UK branch of their organization for a temporary period. While this visa is primarily designed for highly skilled workers, it could also be used to fill management-level positions in the hospitality sector.
  5. Graduate Visa: The Graduate Visa is for international students who have completed a degree in the UK and want to stay in the country to work. This visa allows them to work for up to two years (or three years for doctoral students) in any job, providing a potential talent pool for the hospitality sector.

Visa Costs

Sponsoring a skilled worker visa for a foreign worker can involve various costs for both the employer and the individual. Here is an overview of some of the costs associated with sponsoring a skilled worker visa in the UK:

For the Employer:

  • Sponsorship license fee: £536 for small or charitable sponsors, £1,476 for medium or large sponsors, valid for 4 years
  • Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) fee: £199 for each CoS requested
  • Immigration Skills Charge: £1,000 per year per skilled worker for larger employers, £364 per year per skilled worker for small or charitable employers
  • Advertising costs: for some jobs, the employer may need to advertise the job in the UK before offering it to a foreign worker. Advertising costs vary depending on the advertising platform used.

For the Individual:

  • Visa application fee: £610 for a standard 3-year visa, £1,220 for a 5-year visa
  • Immigration Health Surcharge: £624 per year, payable upfront at the time of application
  • English language test (if not from an English speaking country): £150 – £200, depending on the test provider
  • Tuberculosis (TB) test: if the individual is from a country where TB is prevalent, they may need to take a TB test, which costs £50 – £100, depending on the test provider

Note that these costs are subject to change, and there may be additional costs depending on the circumstances of the application. It is recommended that both the employer and individual seek professional advice before applying for a skilled worker visa to ensure they are aware of all the costs and requirements involved.

To fill the resourcing gaps in the hospitality sector, employers can explore these visa options and identify the most suitable one for their needs. It’s important to note that visa rules and requirements may change over time, so it’s crucial to stay up-to-date with the latest information from the UK Home Office or consult with an immigration expert, such as Immtell. Contact Immtell today to discuss what options are available and start filling those talent gaps.

Why take chances?

 Leverage our expertise to turn your dream of living and working in the UK into a reality.