Frequently asked questions

Requirements

Can I have an extension to my application? 

No. Extensions will not be granted under any circumstances. 

Do I have to fill in the forms and send them back to you via email? 

Yes. Please send completed copies of the acceptance form, data preferences form, medical form and client care letter, ensuring you include all relevant pages and that you send each form as a PDF document (please do not send individual pages). 

Did you get my email with my documents? 

We are experiencing a high volume of queries at this time, so please be patient and we will respond to you as soon as possible. If you do not receive a response in 3 days, please try sending each document in an individual e-mail as we may not have received the original e-mail due to its large size.

Can I use an electronic signature or do I have to print the documents off? 

A manual signature is preferred. However, if you are unable to print the documents and scan them into your computer, we will accept an electronic signature.

Who should complete my medical form?

Your medical form should be completed by a registered doctor and completed in English. Otherwise, there are no other requirements. 

What should I do if my passport is close to expiring?

We can accept your passport if it is valid for when you will be travelling to and entering the UK, but you will need to get it renewed while you are in the UK, which can take some time and is at your own risk. If you do renew your passport in the UK, please make sure you provide your university, as your Tier 4 sponsor, with a copy. Your other option is to renew your passport now before you start your award, but please be aware that should you do this and not receive it back in time to apply for your visa and travel to the UK, the Secretariat will take no responsibility for this.

I have two passports, which one should I use?

You should use the passport from the country for which you have been awarded the scholarship. You should not use a diplomatic or government official passport to travel to the UK because your Chevening Scholarship is not considered to be an official posting.

When will I receive my final award letter?

Your FAL will be issued after you have submitted all of the necessary documents and after we have received confirmation of your course details directly from the university. Your FAL will then be processed by our international team who will send it on to your embassy/high commission for confirmation. Please be patient as you wait as there are a high volume of scholars being processed by our teams at this time.

Should I wait until I have all the documents completed before sending you anything? 

No, please send your documents as and when they are ready. This helps us to know which documents we are waiting for from you, and it means that we can resolve any issues in advance of the deadline.

The conditional award letter states that my scholarship is dependent upon a contribution from my university, should I be concerned about this? 

If you have any queries about this, please contact your programme officer. They will be able to give you tailored advice as every university is different.

Not all scholars are required to take a TB test but depending on your country of residence you may be required to take one as part of your visa application. Please view the Gov.uk website for further guidance. If you require further clarification please email our welfare team

Will I get reimbursed for my TB test? 

You will receive a contribution towards the cost of your TB test if this is necessary for your visa (check if your country is listed)  You must pay to take the test yourself, and you will receive this contribution at a later date. Only confirmed scholars will receive this contribution; unsuccessful scholarship applicants will not receive any contribution.

Will Chevening pay for my visa?

As a Chevening Scholar you are not required to pay for your visa. There is an option on the visa application website which you should choose when applying.  Please follow our guidance on applying for your visa.

Facebook

Why haven't you accepted my Facebook request?

We are currently processing Facebook requests for all scholars in your cohort and this may take some time, particularly because we need to check scholar’s identities against what we have on record before accepting requests. Please be patient, your request will be accepted as soon as possible. 

Accommodation

My landlord/university/accommodation provider is asking me to pay a deposit, what should I do?

You are responsible for paying any accommodation deposits yourself; Chevening do not pay deposits for scholars. Please remember that if you pay your deposit on your cash card you will receive the deposit back on this card at the end of the year so it is important that you keep it safe. 

My landlord is asking me to confirm my payment method, how should I pay?

It is your decision how you pay your rent. We would advise direct debit or bank transfer to prevent you from withdrawing and carrying large amount of cash around. You should organise payment with your accommodation provider. 

My rent needs to be paid in instalments, can you help with this? 

Chevening can arrange what we call a ‘short term loan’ where we provide you with stipend advances in line with your rent payments. You will receive a prorated amount in between these advances so you pay back these pre-payments.

To process a short term loan, you need to email your programme officer your accommodation contract as well as your instalment plan. They will then be able to draw up a contract which you should check carefully before signing and returning. You should do this at least a week before you arrive in the UK to allow time for processing and for payment to be made when you arrive.

In the first instance, however, you should always ask whether you can pay your rent in monthly instalments and give your accommodation provider a copy of your FAL to prove your income. 

My rent needs to be paid in a single payment, can you help with this?

In the first instance, please try to organise your rent in monthly or quarterly instalments. If you have no other option than to pay your rent in a single payment we are able to organise this, but we would advise against it because your cash card (onto which your first payment will be made) has a £10,000 limit, and because your stipend is designed to distribute your expenses across the year. 

Who pays for my accommodation?

You are responsible for paying your accommodation fees/rent. You should pay this using your stipend which is paid around 21st of every month. Chevening will not pay this money directly to your accommodation provider. 

Can the Secretariat act as my guarantor?

No, the Secretariat cannot act as guarantor for your accommodation.

Can you give me advice about which type of accommodation I should choose?

The Secretariat do not provide advice about accommodation. However, most universities have accommodation services who will be able to give you advice about accommodation both on and off campus so you should consult with them first. Once you are a member of the Facebook group you may also be able to ask other scholars but we would advise you finding accommodation as soon as possible. 

University (including tuition fees and CAS)

My university is asking me to pay a tuition fee deposit, what should I do?

Some universities require a tuition fee deposit either because you have deferred your place from the previous year or to secure your unconditional offer. Generally, Chevening will not pay this deposit and it is your responsibility to secure your university offer. In some cases the university may be able to postpone payment of the deposit if they are aware that you are waiting for your Chevening Award to be confirmed, or waive your deposit upon receipt of your final award letter. However, this is at the discretion of each university.

 

After you have arrived in the UK and Chevening have paid your tuition fees directly to your university (usually around November), your deposit will show as credit on your tuition fee account. At this point you will be able to arrange a return of your deposit directly with the university fees office. Chevening do not reimburse your deposit and you must contact your university directly about this.

Where do I get my CAS from?

Your CAS is a unique number generated internally by your university and so you will receive this directly from them. 

Do I need to update my CAS after I’ve received my final award letter (FAL)? 

You should wait until you receive your final award letter (FAL) before requesting a CAS from your university. Occasionally universities will issue your CAS before seeing your FAL. This probably won’t cause an issue but you should still send a copy of your FAL to the university as they may need to update the CAS to reflect information in the FAL. 

Waiting until you have received your FAL has the added benefit that it will sometimes negate the need for a deposit to be paid to your university. Before paying any deposit to your university, you should always ask your programme officer for guidance.

I have a personal contribution, who do I pay this to?  

If you are required to make a personal contribution to your tuition fees, it will be written in your final award letter. Your university will invoice you directly for your contribution and it is your responsibility to make the payment and meet any payment terms. If after receiving your invoice, you are unclear about how to make the payment, you should contact the university directly.

Can you ask the university to change the conditions of my offer?

No. Any conditions given in the university’s offer letter are set by the university with no involvement from the Secretariat. If you do not meet their requirements, the university will be unable to issue you an unconditional offer. It is your responsibility to meet their conditions.

Can you ask the university to speed up my CAS?

Since your CAS is generated internally by your university, Chevening does not have any control over this. Your programme officer cannot intervene nor can they ask the university to expedite the process. Bear in mind that the university will be very busy during the admissions period so please be patient. 

Can I change my course choices?

Once you have confirmed your course choices in interview with your embassy, these cannot be changed under any circumstances. It is imperative that you apply not only to the universities you have listed but also the exact courses listed. We will not award you the scholarship for another university or course other than those agreed upon in interview. 

Is the university aware that I am a Chevening Scholar?

We are in contact with your university and they are aware that you have been conditionally-selected as a Chevening Scholar. However the person you are corresponding with may not be the same as the contact I liaise with at the university, and may not be aware of this.

How will I receive my FAL?

Once I have created your final award letter it will be sent to your embassy or high commission, who will stamp and sign it before sending you the official copy.

Flights

What date should I travel to the UK?

You are advised to travel to the UK a few days before the start date of your course to allow time to settle in to your new environment. However, please note, although you will receive your stipend on the date that you arrive in the UK, it will be calculated according to the start date of your course. For example, if the start date of your course is 14 September, your September stipend will be calculated according to the period 14-30 September. If, in this scenario, you arrive in the UK on September 10, you will receive your stipend when you arrive, but it will be calculated as above.

How do I book my flight?

You will receive an e-mail from your programme officer detailing flight instructions. In these instructions, you will be advised to fill in a flight booking form, detailing your preferred flight dates, which you should then send on to the Secretariat’s designated travel agent. They will look at your options and suggest the most direct and most economical fare.

I’m not living in my home country. Can I fly to the UK from where I am living? 

You should travel to the UK from the country of your award as this is where your pre-departure event will take place. If this is not possible, please contact your programme officer as soon as possible. 

Do I need to wait until I have received my visa to book my flight?

You can complete and send the travel booking form to Diversity before you receive your visa if you wish, but they will not be able to confirm your flight until you have sent them a copy of your visa.

Can I book my own flight and be reimbursed for it?

All scholars are asked to book their flights through our nominated travel agency and you should not book a flight using any other methods. In general, it will not be possible to provide reimbursement for flights booked independently so do refrain from doing so. 

Cash cards and finance

When will I get my cash card?

You will receive your cash card prior to your departure for the UK. Your embassy or high commission will contact you with information on how you will receive this when it is ready.

Please read the user guide for detailed instructions on how to use your cashcard. Click here. 

How do I activate my cash card?

You will receive an email with instructions for activating your cash card once your scholarship is confirmed and prior to your arrival in the UK.

What will be included on my cash card?

Your cash card will include:

  • An arrival allowance (which is intended to cover any expenditure incurred prior to the commencement of your course and immediately following your arrival in the UK)
  • Your living allowance to cover the period from your course start date until the end of October (paid pro-rata depending on your course start date)
  • An event travel top-up allowance (the amount will depend on where you are residing in the UK)

Please check your final award letter to see whether you are entitled to these payments and allowances.

Do I need to setup a UK bank account?

Yes, you will need to set up a UK bank account following your arrival. Your stipend will initially be paid to your cash card then to your bank account. Any funds remaining on the cash card will be transferred to your bank account in November, and the Secretariat will no longer credit any funds to your cash card after this point.

When will my cash card have money on it? 

The funds will be credited to your cash card in the two days prior to your arrival in the UK.

Can I accept another scholarship/additional funding alongside my Chevening Scholarship?

Scholars are not usually permitted to have more than one sponsor. Please send the details of your other scholarship/additional funding to your programme officer, specifying exactly what amounts you will receive from them and the intended purpose of this funding. This should be in English.

Depending on how much the additional funding is, your funding from Chevening may be reduced.

Dependents

My husband/wife and children will join me in the UK. Can you give me advice about how to apply for their visas? Can they take the same flight as me?

Given the high living costs in the UK, you are strongly advised not to bring your dependents to the UK, as we are unable to offer any financial or immigration support. If you wish to bring your dependents to the UK please contact your university’s international office for further advice about their visas. The UKCISA website also has further information which may be useful.

You can inform our travel provider that your husband/wife and children will be flying with you. They will attempt to find seats for all of you, with yours being within our policy. However, if they cannot find seats for all of you, your husband/wife/dependent will have to book their own tickets on a different flight. Please note that the Secretariat will not cover any costs associated with your dependents’ travel.

Is it ok for me to bring my pet with me to the UK?

Please contact your university’s international office for advice.

Travel out of the UK

Can I travel outside of the UK?

As a Chevening Scholar we want you to experience as much of the UK and its culture as possible. Therefore during the tenure of your scholarship, you are permitted to travel outside of the UK for a maximum of 30 days. Travel outside of the UK requires prior consent, so you should notify your programme officer at least two weeks in advance of any travel. Please refer to your final award letter for confirmation of your scholarship tenure dates.

Depending on where you travel it may be necessary for you to apply for an additional visa, for example the Schengen visa. It is your responsibility to check if you require a visa before travelling. If you have any concerns about travelling outside of the UK while on award, you can contact your programme officer or the Welfare and Immigration team

Working

Can I work whilst studying?

As a Chevening Scholar, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) expects your priority to be your studies, but they do acknowledge that gaining some work experience in the UK can be beneficial for your career and overall experience. However you must ensure that any work you do is authorised by the Secretariat, within the conditions of your visa and will not have a negative impact on your studies. If you are thinking of applying for a job or accepting an offer, please contact your programme officer with details about the nature of the work, duration, hours worked per week and salary.

If you are unsure if your visa allows you to work, you should email our Welfare and Immigration team with a copy of your visa and passport.