Youth Mobility Scheme

Here you can get information about YMS (Youth Mobility Scheme) within Tier 5 of the points based system. The information is based on statements of intent published on 6-May-2008. The youth mobility scheme allows young people to come and experience life in the UK for up to 2 years. Young United Kingdom nationals will also be able to benefit from similar opportunities in participating countries. If your country joins the category and you meet the criteria to participate in the scheme, you will be free to do whatever work you like during your stay in the United Kingdom except for business and professional sport, or work as a doctor in training.

You will need to be:

  • A national of a participating country; or
  • A British overseas citizen; or
  • A British overseas territories citizen; or
  • A British national (overseas);

And, (except for British overseas citizens, British overseas territories citizens and British nationals (overseas), will need to be sponsored by your national government.

You will also need to be aged between 18 and 30 years of age and have enough funds to support yourself from when you first enter the UK until you start earning.
You may not participate in the youth mobility scheme if you have dependant children or have before spent time in the UK as a working holidaymaker.

When the Tier 5 – youth mobility scheme is introduced, the following immigration categories will close to new applications:

  • Au pair scheme;
  • British Universities North America Club (BUNAC) scheme;
  • Gap year entrants;
  • Japan: Youth Exchange;
  • Research assistants to Members of Parliament;
  • Working holidaymaker’s scheme.

If you are currently in the United Kingdom under one of these immigration categories, you should read the section on transitional arrangements for information of how the introduction of the Tier 5 will affect you.
The separate au pair arrangements for Bulgarian and Romanian nationals remain unaffected by these changes.

Tier 5 is a short-term immigration category and you will be expected to leave the UK when your permission to stay ends. You will only be able to come to the UK the youth mobility scheme once.