The Process of Becoming a UK Citizen

It’s not a secret. If you read my blog regularly, you know that one of my goals for 2017 is to become a UK citizen. I’ve shared the New Years resolution as a pinned tweet on my Twitter profile as well. Finally, I’ve taken the first out of four steps towards the application but it’s not an easy process so I thought I’d share how to go about it in this post. I know there are others out there who are as confused by the UK governments website on how to apply as I am so hopefully this guide will be useful.

As mentioned, there are four steps to take to become a UK citizen*. First you need a Permanent Citizen Card which will allow you to take the citizenship test and once you’ve passed that you can apply for citizenship. I’ve so far filled in and sent the application for Permanent Citizenship Card.

Life in the UK test books

1. Apply for Permanent Recidence Card – £65

You can now apply for this online which makes things easier. You still have to print out the form and send in together with copies of documents to proof your answers, along with passport and passport pictures. All of this is stated at the end of the application as the documents will differ slightly depending on if you can show P60s for all the five years, if you’re unemplyed, a student, etc.

Once logged in, you can go back and forth between your answers as many times as you want. You have 4 weeks in total to complete the form before everything is deleted. Once you’ve sent it in and printed everything, you have ten days before all the papers need to reach the Home Office.

The application can take up to 6 months to be verified so don’t send off your original passport if you’re planning to leave the country. You can have it legally copied at your local register office. I payed £15 for mine. DON’T MAKE YOUR OWN COPY AS IT WILL BE TURNED DOWN AND YOULL HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE PROCESS AGAIN. The local register office will also send everything to the home office so it’s not that much money considering sending first class and signed for will most likely come to £8 or so anyway. If you’re unsure what documents to send in, they help with that too but that’s another £90 extra.

2. Take the Life in the UK Test – £76

Once you can show that you’re a permanent resident (Residency Card) you can book in to take the citizenship test. It costs £76 to take and you can retake it as many times as you want until passing. To pass you need to score 75% correct answers out of 24 multiple choice questions. You have 45 minutes in total to take it.

There are two official books to help you study (a text book and a mock up tests book). You can buy them from the Government site but also on Amazon which I did. I’ve answered a couple of the questions already and some are laughable easy whilst other s are more tricky. Who knows why we need to know these things but I guess it’s to show we’re taking an interest to the UK culture and lifestyle. There are mock up test flying about online as well but I think I’ll study the book first to be sure I only have to take the test once (I’m not made of money).

To book the Life in the UK test, use this link and for more information on my experience taking it, read this post.

Life in the UK mock test

3. Apply for Citizenship – around £1,000

This is the final step of becoming a UK citizen. The application form can be found here. It also includes a guide with all the information of what needs filling in and what documents you need as proof. I know that you’ll also be asked to have your finger prints and photo taken for an extra £19.20.

4. Citizenship Ceremony – £80

You’ll get invited to the ceremony once your application has been confirmed. You can bring two witnesses to this where they’ll listen to you taking the oath to respect the UK laws and rights. There’s a fee to attend and at the end you’ll be given a certificate and welcome pack.

Are you thinking of becoming an UK citizen? Have you gone through the process already? If so, let me know if I’ve missed anything out or if you have any tips.

Jennie xx

*Note that this is guide is if you are allowed dual citizenship. If not, you also need to neutralise yourself which you can read about here.



  1. Caroline
    26th March 2017 / 4:03 pm

    I’m so excited for you, as know you’ve talked about this before. 🙂
    I had a quick zoom in on the questions in your picture and I can personally say that I’m not sure if I’d
    I’d love to know what the other questions
    Good luck with it all though Jennie, you’ll fly it!


    • 27th March 2017 / 7:26 pm

      Thanks Caroline 🙂 It’s nice to see the support from others. Ha yes the questions are tricky. I don’t think I’d pass if they had an equivalent in Sweden. x

  2. 27th March 2017 / 12:26 pm

    Mine was a little different (probably since I’m from America) I came on a 2 year partner visa, and after those two years, I could apply for my indefinite leave to remain. In order to get this, I had to take the life in the UK test, and send it along with my application. It is a ridiculous test! I think they’ve updated it though to be a bit more current since I took it a few years ago. I’m probably going to go the citizen route eventually, but it’s so expensive for me! It’s around 1200-1500 I think at the minute. One day!

    • 27th March 2017 / 7:29 pm

      Yeah I think they have slight different processes depending on where you’re from. I haven’t been back taking tests like this since school and never did I think i’d ever have to again, ha. I’ve been saving up money for it, ridiculous money to spend and the small extra costs adds up. Oh well, good luck if you go through with it too! x

  3. 8th January 2018 / 6:06 pm

    Jennie, I can’t thank you enough for sharing this with me / us. I’m going to start the process this week and will apply for the residency card. thanks for the tip with the registrar office. I will make sure I have all documents and get appointments in. Best of luck for the further process and let me know how you get on. To make the blog post perfect, would let me know what the timings are roughly? I know the residency card may take up to 6 months (my friend got it in a few weeks and you mentioned a few weeks too). I guess the test is then whenever and you can do it in the meantime. Step 3 timing would be interesting to know. Thank you, Caz xxx

    Caz | Style Lingua

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