Unlocking New Horizons: UK-South Korea Youth Mobility Scheme Expansion

By 29th January 2024 No Comments


Taylor Hampton’s Leena Chouhan explains how the YMS shared visa scheme opens doors for cross-cultural experiences for young people


This article explains the Youth Mobility Scheme Expansion programme and what it means for young professionals in South Korea and the UK.  Exciting times await young Brits and South Korean nationals as the UK and South Korea join hands to expand their shared visa scheme. In fact it heralds an era of increased opportunities for cross-cultural experiences.

How will the scheme transform visa applications?

Commencing on January 31, 2024, the Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS) visa is set for a significant transformation. South Korean nationals, once limited to a modest 1,000 applications annually, will now witness a substantial boost, with the quota skyrocketing to 5,000. Moreover, the age bracket for eligibility is undergoing a positive shift, extending from 18 to 30 to a more inclusive 18 to 35.

A noteworthy change accompanies this expansion – South Korean nationals aspiring to secure the YMS visa will no longer navigate the intricacies of a ballot registration process. Instead, they gain the liberty to submit applications at their convenience, as long as they meet the prescribed eligibility criteria.

How will the Shared Visa Scheme assist young people?

Over the years, the Youth Mobility schemes have become a gateway for numerous young individuals, enabling them to traverse borders, work, and immerse themselves in the rich tapestry of the UK. This initiative fosters a profound understanding of diverse cultures and societies, offering an unparalleled avenue for personal and professional growth.


Notably, British Ambassador to South Korea, Colin Crooks, expressed his anticipation, stating, “The enthusiasm of British and Korean people for each other’s culture, language, music, and sports is at an all-time high.” He highlighted how the expanded YMS agreement will empower more young minds from both nations to delve into each other’s cultures firsthand, creating enduring memories and friendships along the way.


Youth Movility Scheme Expansion - photo of Colin Crooks

Colin Crooks UK Ambassador to South Korea


Additionally, Michael Lutz, the UKVI Head of Region for Asia Pacific, echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the Youth Mobility Scheme as an excellent opportunity for South Korean nationals to immerse themselves in the UK. The expansion opens doors for more individuals aged 18 to 35 to not only live and work in the UK but also forge unforgettable memories.


As the UK and South Korea fortify their collaboration, this expansion marks a pivotal moment in fostering international connectivity, empowering the youth to seize life-changing opportunities, and building bridges of understanding between nations. The future looks promising for the adventurous souls ready to embark on this transformative journey.  For more information about how we can assist with this scheme and visa applications contact Leena Chouhan on 0207 427 5972.


South Korea, Seoul at Night