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Last Updated : May 14, 2019 08:46 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Indians likely to have highest number of travelers to UK for ICC Cricket World Cup

According to British High Commission spokesperson, around 80,000 Indians may travel for the World Cup.

Moneycontrol News @moneycontrolcom

The 2019 Cricket World Cup will be played in the two nations of England and Wales in the United Kingdom. And this is probably why more people are planning to travel to UK.

According to British High Commission spokesperson, around 80,000 Indians may travel for the World Cup.

“This is based on previous India-UK travel trends and the previous numbers of Indians travelling for previous tournaments. We don’t have a global estimate for how many people in total will travel, but it is extremely likely that India will be the highest number – given the size of the market and passion for the sport in India, and the great flight connections between India and UK,” he added.

Whether there has been an increase in the number of visa applications because of the World Cup, the spokesperson said, “During summer, we see a much bigger number coming in due to the seasonal increase in travel, and this certainly appears to be even higher due to the cricket this year.”

During peak season (e.g. April-July) UK usually sees 100-150 percent higher demand for the visa than off-peak (e.g. November-January).

“At the moment, demand is higher still and receiving more than 3,500 applications a day from India is common. Our visa services partner VFS Global has already processed over 200,000 UK visa applications in India, during the period of January 2019 to April 2019. In March and April of 2019 alone, over 132,000 UK visa applications were submitted at VFS Global, which accounted for around 65 per cent of the overall UK visa application count in January to April 2019,” he added.

To keep up with the high demand for travel to the UK ahead of the Cricket World Cup, VFS Global has been offering a range of value-added services.

“Since the tournament is coinciding with the peak travel season from India, VFS Global’s special packages for UK visa applicants include Group appointments, priority and super Priority visas, doorstep visa application services, and even match tickets through Britain Travel Shop, said Vinay Malhotra, regional group chief operating officer, VFS Global.

With the cricket fever at its peak in India, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) is taking many initiatives to encourage Indians to travel for the World Cup.

“Since February UKVI has been running a cricket campaign across India aimed specifically at Indians travelling for the cricket. The campaign is ongoing - follow the hashtag #SummerofCricketINUK on our social media channels,” the spokesperson said. 

From February until April, UKVI held seven events (including a cricket match at Talkatora Cricket Ground) and delivered a social media campaign encouraging customers to apply early.

UKVI is also encouraging late bookers to use Priority Visa. This will get a decision in 5 working days (rather than the standard 15 working days). This means everyone can get a decision in time for the match they want to see.
First Published on May 14, 2019 08:46 pm
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