Can I marry my Thai girlfriend in the UK?

If you have been with your Thai girlfriend for a long period of time there is every reason that you may want to get married. Many couples choose to get married in Thailand whilst others prefer to get married in the UK. You may want your girlfriend to live with you permanently in the UK or you may be planning on marrying in the UK and then returning to Thailand. Either is possible but it is important that you have the correct visa.

The UK Fiancée Visa is designed to allow couples to marry in the UK. The application process for this UK visa for your Thai girlfriend or fiancée can be quite complex, and, as a result, be very stressful. There are two main requirements when it comes to the application, the first being proving that you are in a genuine relationship, and this means that you have been together for more than six months. The second is that you have the financial means to support this kind of relationship.

The British Embassy in Bangkok will not just accept you and your Thai fiancée’s word that you have been in a relationship for more than 6 months, evidence will be required. This may include photographs of the two of you together, email exchanges or proof that money has been transferred. You may also be asked how the relationship started and again evidence may be asked for. Usually a combination of these factors will be required to validate your relationship. On a similar note, you must both prove that you have the freedom to marry if one or both parties has been married previously.

Of course, if you are planning to marry and move to the UK you will need to prove that you have the means to support your Thai fiancée. She will have no recourse to UK public funds. Our team will be happy to discuss the finer details of this but in summary, a minimum of three months payslips will be required or a copy of your company accounts if you are self-employed and pictures of your property along with proof of ownership. It should go without saying that you need to supply a sponsorship letter stating that you actually wish to sponsor your fiancée during her time in the UK.

Once you have all your documents prepared, the documents for both yourself and your Thai fiancée, we will prepare them to take to the British Embassy in Bangkok with whom we deal with on a daily basis. The application process usually takes in the region of two to three weeks although if an interviewed is required then this can delay the process. Once you and your Thai fiancée are married in the UK, and you plan on living there, you will need to convert the visa to a UK Spouse Visa, something that we will discuss in another article.

We always recommend that you seek professional advice when applying for a UK Fiancée Visa to minimise the stress and the potential for disappointment. Here at Thai Visa Express, we can have several years’ experience in dealing with such applications. You can call us on: +66 (0)80 102 2328, +66 (0) 38 420 313 or +44 (0) 20 8133 8059, email us on: info@thaivisaexpress.com or alternatively contact us via our website.