This morning, shortly after 9 am, we got the update from the UK Visas & Immigration Office (UKVI) that our application to naturalise as British citizens has been approved!

This was a fantastic update to get on a Monday morning as it signalled the end to a long and very expensive immigration journey. It’s difficult to explain how this feels because back in 2015 when our visas were issued, the mission of getting our hands on a British Passport felt like an impossible task, but now, as we approach the finish line, it suddenly feels like the 6-year mission has flown by. We were also a bit astounded by this update from the UKVI as our citizenship application took only 6 weeks to process, which must be a new record as everyone we know seems to have had their applications processed somewhere between 3-5 months. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not complaining.

What happens next:

To finalise our application we must attend a citizenship ceremony where we’ll be sworn in as British nationals. At the ceremony, we’ll be given our citizenship certificates which officially changes our legal status in the UK and we can then apply for British Passports. Thanks to Covid, we’ll not be able to attend an in-person ceremony any time soon, so to avoid any further delays, we’ll be attending a virtual ceremony on Thursday 16 December with our citizenship certificates to be delivered by courier.

So there you have it, from 16 December we’ll be both British and South African citizens – how amazing is that?

Chat soon,

Andre