Connect with us

Which country has the shortest line for visas?

If you do not have a Family-member in a country of intended migration, but your occupation is on the list of the country where you wish to migrate , the wait can be as short as 6-8 months for specific categories in Australia. On the other hand, having a US citizen relative or even only a permanent resident relative in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK could get you in faster in the Family-sponsorship category.

Share this article
Which country has the shortest line for visas?
Posted on May 19, 2013


Which Country Gives More Visas Yearly?

The amount of visas granted every year in different categories determine how long a visa applicant would have to wait.  Where is the line shortest?

Qualified skilled migrants, those in shortage occupations or whose occupations are in demand are most welcome in the Commonwealth Nations - Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK . These countries have points-based migration and focuses on economic immigrants instead of migrants who may qualify based  solely on family relationships.

On the other hand, family –sponsored migrants (contributors to the social security system of the country) are normally two-income earners . They are welcome since they contribute more to the system than most native workers thus helping ensure the regular flow of pension and benefits of retirees.

Here is the average number of visas allocated by each country in the Family-based categories each year.  It must be mentioned that the US issues 1 million immigrant visas / permanent resident cards every year.

While there is a limit of 226,000 visas in the US Family-based categories, immediate relatives of US Citizens (spouse, minor children and parents) are not subject to the yearly quota.  Once a petition is approved, an immigrant visa is immediately available.

Total Occupation Employment-based Visas Issued per Year (2010-12)

Australia                     129,250

Canada                       186,913

New Zealand              28,000

UK                               81,185*

USA                             140,000

*UK Settlement Grants in 2009


Each country has a list of occupations in demand or in short supply: Australia has the Skilled Occupations List and the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List; Canada has the new priority occupations list under the Federal Skilled Worker Class; New Zealand has the Long Term Skills Shortage List; UK has the Shortage Occupations issued by the Migration Advisory Committee and UKBA while the US has the Schedule A occupations.

For those seeking to migrate to the Commonwealth Nations, each country has a minimum passing score: Australia, 60; Canada, 67; NZ, 100; UK, 70 , The US does not have a points-based migration based on age, education, experience and English proficiency, but there are moves in the US Congress towards this option.

Family-based visas or Sponsorship

Australia                     60,185

Canada                       60,000

New Zealand              16,500

UK                               72,240*

USA                             226,000

*UK Settlement grants in 2009


It must be mentioned that Canada allows Friends or Distant Relatives to sponsor immigrants to Manitoba; Australia provides residency visas for Carers, Last Remaining Relatives and Aged Dependent Relatives.

For procedures on filing a Family-based or sponsorship of a Family member or Skilled Migration to any of the countries mentioned above, you may call the Immigrant Visa Center at +632-634-8717, +63917-534-8472 or send an email to

Be sure to mention the immigration status of the petitioner as well as the age, marital status of the person being petitioned or sponsored.

Got a question? Let us know - we're here to help.

Send us your migration concern

Other countries

Email and phone
Phone only
Social Media - please specify website (ex: Facebook, Google Plus, etc.) and account name

We need to make sure that you're human. What is nine minus four?

ICEF logoPIER logoANZCHAM logoBritish Council logo