The UK Residence Card

Any person from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) that plans to live in the UK will need to apply for a UK Residence Card. This means that if your Thai wife is planning on going to live in England she will also need to apply. Sometimes referred to as a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP), Thai wives and Thai girlfriends will need to apply is the following circumstances:

  • If they plan to come to the UK for more than 6 months perhaps in the case of a UK Marriage Visa
  • If their visa is extended for longer than 6 months
  • If your Thai wife applies to settle in the UK
  • If their visa needs transferring to a new passport
  • If your Thai wife or girlfriend applies for certain Home Office Travel documents

If the application is made in the UK the fee is £65 for each applicant so effectively, if the application was for your Thai wife and a dependent child, it would be £130. The application can be completed at certain larger Post Offices where there will be an additional fee of £19.20. Here your Thai girlfriend or wife will need to give biometric information such as having a digital photo taken of their face, fingerprints will be scanned and a signature given. If everything is correct, the application for a UK Residence Card for your Thai wife will be completed in around 5 minutes.

In addition to the biometric information mention above, your Thai girlfriend will also need to provide two recent photographs, her current passport, one passport sized photo of her British sponsor, the sponsor’s passport and proof of the relationship such as a marriage certificate.  Once you have supplied all the information, including the biometric information, you should receive your UK Biometric Residence Permit within 10 days. The card will be valid for 5 years from the date of application.

If you haven’t received your BRP within the aforementioned 10 days, you should email the Home Office on including your Thai Girlfriend’s full name, date of birth and passport number. You should also include a case reference number, telephone number and address.

Naturally, once your Thai wife or girlfriend has received her card she should check that all the information is correct. Failure to do so could cause serious problems in the future. If an error is noticed, you or your Thai girlfriend should email the Home Office immediately on giving details of the error along with supplying the same information as outlined above for a missing card.

If the UK Residence Card is lost or stolen it should be reported to the police immediately as well as informing the Home Office on If the card is damaged in any way, the Home Office should be informed on where details will be given as to how your Thai wife should proceed.

At Thai Express visa we can help guide you through the process of applying for a UK Residence Card either if you or your Thai girlfriend is in Thailand or in the UK. If this is a service that you are interested in, you can call our Pattaya office on 038 420 313, email us on or alternatively, you could contact us via our website. We look forward to hearing from you and of being of greater assistance.