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Thinking of using the Home Office Croydon Premium Service Centre? Read this first!

If you’re in a bind and need a decision on your immigration status quickly, you might find yourself at the doors of the Croydon Premium Service Centre (CPSC). For a hefty fee, you can have your visa granted within a few hours. They are open 8AM to 5PM Monday, Thursday and Friday, and on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, they are available for those that get out of work a little later from 8AM until 8PM (you must make an appointment first fo any of these times - don't just turn up unannounced). Although they never seem to answer the phone, the Centre is fairly accessible to the people of South London that need same day visa processing.

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What Should I Prepare For?


The CPSC is an extension of the Home Office and as such, it is heavily protected, as a government-run building should be. When entering, expect to remove any coat or belt, pass through a metal detector, be searched for illegal drugs, anything that can be used as a weapon, or flammable items (i.e.aerosol or alcohol based). If you’re anything like our famous Croydon resident, Jeremy from Peep Show, we suggest you leave that gun you just found at home. You are allowed to bring your mobile phone inside but you cannot take calls inside… so don’t.


When you get to the 3rd-floor reception area take a ticket and wait to be called. You should already have your signed application and documents in order and be ready to speak to an immigration caseworker. Make sure to have photocopies and certified translations of any documents that are not in English or Welsh. Once you’re registered, sit down and wait to be called again for Biometrics.


They will lead you through a glass door where they will take your fingerprints, signature and photos. They will then check these against immigration and police databases to make sure you’re not a criminal. After this short stage, the biometrics officer will take your documents and pass them over to the immigration caseworker and you will have to wait for the decision once more.

3rd floor reception area at Croydon PSC (these tellys aren't used for fun). Courtesy of Google

Hopefully, your case is approved and your BRP is ordered on the spot (10 working days to arrive). Occasionally, the caseworkers won’t be able to make an immediate decision for reasons that don’t necessarily have to do with you. While incredibly annoying, it’s still fine; you will receive an update via email and if approved they will send your BRP and it will arrive within 10 working days.


What Services or Facilities Do They Have?


First off, it is important to note that you can only apply for a visa extension or Indefinite Leave to Remain (permanent residency). The visas that you can extend are not all inclusive, for example, Tier 1 Investor, Graduate, Exceptional Talent visas or if you are an elderly dependent, seaman, active member of the armed forces and exempt from immigration laws, or have been charged with a crime.

(Full List found here)


If you happen to not be targeted in this list, then let us talk about the facilities in and around the building available to you on your journey. For your entertainment, the Home Office has provided a television, radio and photograph booth. For the daily necessities, they have toilets, a baby changing and mothers' room and a multi-faith prayer room. There are not any cafeterias or vending machines in the building, however they do provide potable water. If you start to feel peckish during your wait you may bring some snacks or venture out to one of the nearby cafés or take-aways like Tashi Sushi. If you plan on leaving the building be sure to hand your mobile number over to the reception.


What Should I Bring?


Again, you’re paying a lot of money to get this sorted, you needed to make an appointment to get in, so don’t make a dog’s dinner of it. Remember your checklist for all of the documents that you need, including that certified translation of your birth certificate that you just ordered.


As stated above, there is only one television and one radio and it is unlikely that everyone will find interest in what is being broadcasted. You should bring a fully charged mobile with a backup portable charger. If you have young children with you, bring a few books or games to keep them entertained throughout the likely 4+ hours you will spend there (the telly is not likely to be broadcasting BBC Kids). You might find that either the walk to Kaspa’s is too much for you to handle, or maybe you just don’t want dessert at 0 in the morning; I suggest you bring your own meals.


So that’s it! You’ve reached the end of our rather comprehensive guide of South London’s Premium Service Centre. Hopefully, we’ve provided enough information for those considering using this service at this particular location and you all can be prepared for all the hurdles there.


Thanks for reading!

-Fez


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