South Africans are in high demand for UK work permits

UK companies are employing more South Africans now than ten years ago, with close to 4000 sponsored jobs being offered in the last year. This is more than double the 1500 applications the year prior.

According to the UK government’s latest overall immigration statistics, Skilled work, which accounted for two thirds (66%) of work-related visas granted, saw the largest increase in visa numbers from the year ending March 2020, up 72,208 or 66%. High value, Skilled work, Temporary work and Other work visas and exemption routes, all increased compared to the previous year.

The COVID-19 pandemic caused a drop in UK visa grants in 2020 and 2021. However, the latest figures show that there has been a significant rebound, with record numbers of Skilled Worker visas being submitted globally and nationally.

“South Africans considering moving to the United Kingdom should take advantage of this upward spike in visas being granted by the UK government, as our years in the industry have shown us that a significant spike is almost always followed by a dip,” said Move Up, a leading UK-specific immigration consultancy based in Cape Town.

However, the company also warned South Africans that they should be aware of each visa type’s strict requirements before investing in the visa application process.

According to Move Up managing director, Ryan Rennison, many of UK visa applicants aren’t initially aware that, even though they may be fluent first- or second-language English speakers, many applicants are still required to take a Secure English Language Test (SELT) through an approved provider, depending on which visa they are applying for.

Applicants must prove they can read, write, speak and understand English to at least level B1 on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale, perhaps even level A1 if applying for other specific visa types outlined by the UK’s points-based immigration system.

Cheapest A1 English Test available in SA

Move Up has announced that it has been granted a licence by a British-government-approved SELT provider for South Africans applying for UK visas. Move Up’s new service means that South Africans can apply for certain visas sooner than through any other provider, and possibly pay less.

They currently offer the cheapest A1 category tests in the country and the soonest available appointments in Cape Town.

“This is great news for South Africans who want to live and work in the UK,” said Rennison. “We are the cheapest provider of English Language A1 tests, and our Cape Town appointments are available faster than any other provider. This means that South Africans could get their visas sooner and start their new lives in the UK.”

“We are committed to providing our clients with the best possible service and value,” said Rennison. “Combined with our staff’s years of experience and specialist expertise in preparing successful visa applications for our clients, our Secure English Language Tests allow South Africans to apply for their UK visas quickly and with confidence, knowing that they meet the requirements.”

To find out which English test you require for your preferred UK visa, visit Or contact Move Up for help getting your UK visa granted.