Find out how your visa will be issued, where to pick up your biometric residence permit (BRP) if you are issued one, and which office at Sussex needs to see it after you arrive.

Receiving your visa and BRP collection

After your Student visa application has been successful, you will get either a:

  • Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) – if you gave your biometric information at a visa application centre, or are a visa national who applies in the UK
  • an eVisa you can view and prove online – if you used the UK Immigration: ID Check app (this applies to most EU nationals and eligible applicants who apply in the UK)

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) are in the process of issuing eVisas to all nationals during 2024. You should check the email you receive from UKVI when your visa is granted for information on what type of visa you have been issued and whether you have a BRP to collect on arrival in the UK.

For non-EU nationals applying overseas, if your visa is for longer than six months, you get a 90 day vignette (sticker) in your passport which you use to travel to the UK, and will then collect your BRP on arrival at Sussex.

You must always arrive in the UK within the validity of your Student visa. This will either be within the validity of your 90 day vignette (if you have been issued one) or after the valid from date of your Student visa if you have been issued an eVisa.

If you have been issued with a BRP, this is a card issued by the Home Office which shows your immigration permission.

It holds biographic details (name, date and place of birth) and biometric information (a picture of your face and your fingerprints).

If you are applying for a student visa from outside the UK, enter the Alternative Collection Location (ACL) code (found on your CAS statement) when making your visa application. 

If you have used the ACL code, your BRP will be delivered to the University.

When you have completed registration, we will email you with a link to book an appointment to collect your BRP from the Student Centre.

You will need to bring your passport with you, which will contain a vignette (visa sticker in passport).

Your vignette should have been date-stamped by a Border Force Officer when you arrived. If not, we will need the unstamped vignette and a scan of your boarding pass or travel ticket as evidence of the date you arrived. If you used an e-gate, let us know.

If your BRP has not been delivered when you go to collect it, you can inform UKVI. You should get a response within five working days which tells you what to do. If you need any help, contact our International Advice team.

If you don’t have a BRP or vignette

If you do not have a BRP or vignette (for example, as an EU, EEA or Swiss national who used the new ‘UK Immigration: ID Check’ app) and received your immigration permission online, send us:

  • a scan of your passport
  • a scan of your boarding pass or ticket showing when you arrived in the UK
  • your “share code” from the ID Check app, so we can check your immigration permission – see how to view and prove your immigration status.

In some cases we may need to check the status of your immigration application with UKVI before you can register as a student.

If you already have your BRP

If your BRP was delivered to your home address in the UK, or you picked it up from a post office, upload clear colour images of the front and back in the Online Registration system. We need this for our records.

Important: If you’re arriving late and you have a student visa, we’re obliged to tell UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). Once we have contacted you for a scanned copy of your BRP, send it as soon as possible.

Checking your visa

Make sure all the details on your BRP or eVisa are correct, including your:

  • name, nationality and date of birth
  • visa expiry date
  • university sponsor number
  • working conditions.

Most students won’t have a national insurance number on their BRP. You will need to apply for one if you want to work in the UK.

If something isn’t right, find out about correcting errors on your visa.

You need to correct any errors within 10 days of collecting your BRP.

If your BRP expires in December 2024

If you have been issued with a BRP that expires on 31 December 2024 but you know your immigration permission should go beyond this date, this is not an error. You can check UKVI have given the correct end date by looking on your visa acceptance confirmation letter.

You will not need a BRP from 1 January 2025 because you’ll be able to prove your immigration status online without a BRP.

You do not need to do anything and your immigration status will not be affected.

The Home Office will provide details on how to update your BRP in early 2024.

Your BRP and other forms of Sussex ID

Your BRP is different from your student ID card. You will get this with your BRP once you have completed all elements of the Sussex registration process.

Important: Only use your BRP as a form of identification where you need to show your immigration status – for example, if you’re applying for a bank account, national insurance number to work or UK driving licence.

You can also get an NUS card from the Students’ Union, which gives you deals and discounts, but it’s not an official form of identification.

Lost or stolen BRP

Check what to do if your:

See more from Arriving in the UK