Emigrating to the UK

Emigrating from South Africa to the UK

UK countrysideEmigrating from South Africa to the UK is not a new topic in our household, we actually started discussing it when Tristan was much younger. You can read that post here. It has come up frequently since mid-2019 due to various long term problems in South Africa. In December 2019 / January 2020 we took a family holiday to the UK to have a little scout about.

It’s time

Covid19 hit and in March 2020 South Africa went into a nationwide lockdown, it’s now September and we are in level 2 lockdown. It’s winter and of course our national electricity provider has implemented rolling load shedding. I am just so over all this now! Add this to our initial concerns and I am ready to board the first flight out of here.

But it’s not that simple!

Emigrating from South Africa to the UK is not a quick nor an easy or cheap process. It takes time, lots of planning, money & patience. I am fortunate to have a British passport so that eases things for us to a certain degree.

We are applying for settlement visas for Mr M & the kids but as I’ve said it’s not that simple. There are strict rules that apply & conditions that have to be met. We have decided to use the services of an emigration specialist. Although many say you can do it yourself, a specialist will ensure we are 100% on track.


Tristan is due to start Year 1 in the UK in September 2021. I want us to be settled in the UK way before then. This is a big change for Tristan and I want to ensure I do the best I can to support and make the change as easy as possible.

This is a key thing for me to get right. I want to ensure that Tristan (a December baby so will be one of the older kids in his year) is as school ready as he can be so that when he starts school in the UK his abilities match those of his classmates.

Location location location

SurreyWe have chosen Surrey as our destination. Yes, Surrey is a large county but during our December / January trip we were able to drive through, visit & explore a few areas. I think this was a great help to us as we were able to get a feel for the areas. Our current top 3 towns are Godalming, Farnham and Guildford.

Having asked many people it seems that if we choose a good area to live, we will naturally find a good school for the kids. What I struggle with is the application process. It is obviously the same no matter where in the world you move but the fact that we can only apply for a school once we have an address (and then might not get a place) is doing my head in. It’s the chicken or the egg situation! Which one must come first?


So while we get the ball running with the emigration specialists, I am preparing our SA home to be rented out. It’s something we’ve discussed at length and keeping our SA home for the foreseeable future will be best for us. Each day I add a new thing to the list of ‘things to get done’ around the house in order to do some touch ups we’ve learnt to live with after our renovation. We also have some furniture pieces to purchase to complete a few rooms. It seems bizarre that, although we are leaving we need to buy furniture here!

Emigrating from South Africa to the UK

Now we wait. We wait until such time as we are able to submit the applications. When we submit the applications we will give a date of travel. Hopefully this will be sometime between February & April 2021.

Emigrating from South Africa to the UK is going to be a whole new adventure. It’s going to be tough but exciting. I am looking forward to starting this new chapter with my precious family.

If you have any tips about emigrating please share them in the comments below.

Much love xxx

One thought on “Emigrating from South Africa to the UK

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.