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    Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

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    elf
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    Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by elf on 17/05/11, 09:20 pm

    Ni hao!

    So thanks Anon, whoever you are (guessing a mod here), here's my situation and I'm desperately hoping someone can help.

    Throughout 2010 I travelled in Asia, having quit and sold everything. I'd had enough of the UK, having a mortgage, paying taxes, working for morons, terrible weather and how difficult, combative and stressful London was.

    When I arrived in China I met my now-girlfriend (and fiancee), in a hostel that I stayed in. She worked there. We kept in touch as I went on to HK, Taiwan, Japan and Seoul and she met me in Beijing. We ended up travelling through China for 2 months and I renewed my visa purely so we could stay together. We met several more times once I'd left, once in HK as I connected through to Auckland, and again in Bangkok which I came all the way back from LA for. I took her around Thailand as her ancestry has some roots there and recently spent 2 weeks back in HK and Shenzhen with her.

    So the time came to make a decision - we can't apply for a tourist visa as there's no way to categorically prove that she'll return (even though I'm benefiting the economy whilst she's here). And hence the only other option was a fiancee visa. I had proposed in any case, but we wanted to wait a year or so (as she's scared of marriage due to her what her own family has been through).

    Neither of us plan on staying in the UK much longer than a few years. That's how long it'll take to get my teacher-training courses complete and save enough money to start a life in Taiwan.

    I've got a Solicitor helping with the visa and the part we're stuck on is the English test. As I'm sure you're all aware, the recent change by the UKBA has enforced a ludicrously simple requirement that UK-based examining bodies offer. Most of which have now been rescinded, and the latest list of just 5 only appears to have only a single option to take - IELTS with the British Council. Whilst my fiancee-girlfriend studied English up to University level, as it's not recognised as a "Bachelors" degree, she needs to do this and ensure a certificate is provided. I'd rather she took the easiest and cheapest option rather than the full-blown IELTS as it's FAR harder. Plus it's difficult to get the time off work and travel to Nanning or Guangzhou (or wherever else).

    If anyone knows exactly who she should take the exam with, where, how to contact and organise, I'd be eternally grateful.

    Xiexie ni.
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by handyal on 18/05/11, 06:56 am

    Hi elf,
    A very warm welcome to the forum.

    You already appear to have done some research but you don't specifically state which Visa the solicitor is helping with. We could have saved you some money. LOL.

    You have a number of options available as far as Visa's are concerned, each carrying it's own conditions.
    1. Visitor Visa: Status single. No English Language requirement.
    2. Family Visitor Visa: Status married. No English Language requirement.
    The A1 English level test could be taken at one of the many centres in the UK, and the Visa application fees are much cheaper.
    Visitor Visa's carry a higher risk of refusal.
    3. Fiancee Visa. You must marry within 6 months in the UK. English Language requirement.
    4. Settlement Visa: Status Married. English Language requirement.

    We can advice you on what documents you require for any of the above Visa's. The UKBA only provide basic lists. Only your Fiancee's documents need to be translated. This is relatively cheap and easy in China.

    As for the test centres in China, try this list:
    http://www.cambridgeesol-centres.org/centres/search.do;jsessionid=2FE2988DE5671B895BDD94A3BBD89379.node02?source=candidateexam&country=CN&qualification=ALL
    The open centres are walk in. The internal centres require you to take classes first before taking the test. Most of these tests are at KET level. IELTS is much to difficult for the A1 test requirements.
    Search results:
    British Embassy, BeijingCN001Chaoyang DistrictBeijingOpen centre
    Institute Of Online Education, Beijing Foreign Studies UniversityCN509Haidian DistrictBeijingOpen centre
    Beijing N E E A (ESOL)CN092Haidan DistrictBeijing Open centre
    CRTVU - Online Educational Technology LimitedCN805P.R. ChinaBeijing Open centre
    Cultural and Educational Section of The British Consulate-GeneralCN004318 Fu Zhou LuShanghaiOpen centre
    Education First International (Shanghai)CN820Shanghai 200001ShanghaiInternal centre
    Shanghai General Plan Telecom & Equipment Co.,LtdCN275P R ChinaShanghaiInternal centre
    Hebei Provincial Education DepartmentCN299449 Zhong Shan Xi RoadShijiazhuang Open centre
    Harbin Star Foreign Language CollegeCN358P.R.ChinaOpen centre
    Higher Education Examination CentreCN940100029, ChinaOpen centre

    Anon. Wink

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by elf on 18/05/11, 08:35 am

    Hi Handyal, thanks for the reply.

    I guess you could, but it's like trying to find needles in country-sized haystacks for information on this stuff. I only stumbled across that page recently and then here..!

    I know there's no language requirement for a visitor visa, but as we can't prove she's returning, we decided to get stuck in with fiancee visa. Unless you know of a way to prove she's going back without all the stuff from an employer in China? I only ask as she's not in a contracted job there and should she take one, won't be able to take holiday for the first year.

    So assuming visitor is a dead-end (which is the conclusion I came to), my exam requirement is for the fiancee visa. Clearly it's easier if she meets just the requirement, rather than going for IELTS.

    Would you recommend heading overnight to Beijing and taking the Cambridge ESOL there? (Is that KET or IELTS?)
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Chris Seaborn on 18/05/11, 08:41 am

    Hi Elf, I also wish you a very big welcome to the Forum, we hope you keep in touch with your progress, the members here are a good mob and very happy to help, so don't hesitate to ask any questions, however stupid you may think they are, most of us have been there and done that, they know the pitfalls you may come across.

    Cheers,
    Chris.

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Graham on 18/05/11, 10:36 am

    Hi Elf,

    A very warm welcome to you and happy that you found this forum.
    I am sure you will be amazed at all the valuable information that is available here.
    Both HandyAl, Chris, and many more are all too willing to give unselfish guidance.
    I am sure, given time, you will be on track to a settlement visa, and all the possible pitfalls, and solutions.

    Graham Weifang, sunny
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by luckysteve on 18/05/11, 03:01 pm

    Hi Elf a very warm welcome to the Forum.
    You will find lots of Help and Advice off these very kind and caring members.
    As long as you follow the advice you will not go far wrong, I am living proof of that Laughing .
    From my Personal experience meeting and marrying my Lao Po was the Best thing I ever did, just wish I had the sense to do it years ago
    You can also make good friends as well, which I have been fortunate to do as well.

    Steve and Li Li Very Happy Smile .

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by elf on 18/05/11, 03:10 pm

    Haha dui dui dui!

    Seems weird seeing someone else say "lao po" as that's what I call ShanShan! Sometimes I forget it's meaning and that it's a common nickname.

    So does anyone know whether KET is good enough? ShanShan just tried IELTS and scored 4, which is CEFR equiv. of B1. That's good enough for the lovely UKBA. All good. But KET is cheaper and EASIER!

    Any feedback appreciated, she's looking to book tomorrow and just get it done.

    Oh and Steve, I prefer "qin ai de lao po da ren", that always gets a smile!!
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by MadGee on 18/05/11, 04:54 pm

    Hi Elf,

    Welcome to the Forum!

    KET is an easier exam and, I believe, a lot less expensive than IELTS.
    Just make sure that the centre is approved by the UKBA, this is most important.

    IELTS is expensive, around 1550rmb for the test but it's the most recognised and there is a registered test centre in most major cities. The results only take 14 days whereas some other tests take months to get the certificate.

    Remember, it's going to be a lot cheaper for the 'missus' to take classes in China than it is in the UK.

    Best wishes for the future.
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by handyal on 18/05/11, 07:44 pm

    Hi elf,
    There are only 4 test centres offering the KET examination.

    Cambridge ESOL exam centres search results


    There are 4 centres in China which offer the KET exam. (displayed below).
    There are two kinds of authorised Cambridge ESOL centre:

    1. Open Centres
      Open centres are authorised to run examinations for all candidates, including those who are not taking a preparation course at the institution that runs the centre. Many open centres also run preparation courses for the Cambridge ESOL exams.
    2. Internal Centres
      Internal Centres are authorised to run examinations only for students who are enrolled as students at the institution that runs the centre. They are not able to accept entries from candidates who are not their students.

    Some centres are 'open' for some exams and 'internal' for others. If they are unable to accept your entry, for this or any other reason, they will inform you of this.
    Search results:
    Beijing N E E A (ESOL)CN092Haidan DistrictBeijing Open centre
    Education First International (Shanghai)CN820Shanghai 200001ShanghaiInternal centre
    Hebei Provincial Education DepartmentCN299449 Zhong Shan Xi RoadShijiazhuang Open centre
    Higher Education Examination CentreCN940100029, ChinaOpen centre

    http://cambridgeesol-centres.org/centres/search.do;jsessionid=DFE76446C1514AB8CBA47D4B2B75A8BF.node01?source=candidateexam&country=CN&qualification=3

    If ShanShan's english is as good as you think she can take the IELTS exam at the Guangxi University in Nanning, otherwise it looks like a trip to Beijing for the KET.

    There are 2 test centres in Guangzhou (IELTS).
    China - South
    Guangzhou
    British Council Guangzhou Office, Guangzhou
    More Information

    China - South
    Guangzhou
    Zhong Kai Agrotechnical College, Guangzhou
    More Information

    http://www.ielts.org/test_centre_search/search_results.aspx

    I would certainly recommend you first contact any test centre you are considering.

    With reference to your Visa question. For a Fiancee Visa you would have to get married within 6 months in the UK. I note you said she is reluctant to marry immediately but that's one of the conditions of a Fiancee Visa. She has no right to work in the UK whilst on a Fiancee Visa. After marriage you upgrade to a Settlement Visa which gives her the right to work.
    Non of the Visa categories give her any right to claim public funds but she is entitled to free NHS on entry to the UK.

    Looking at your future plans to teach in Taiwan. After 2 years in the UK she can get a permanent Visa, but this is dependant on her taking an approved ESOL course which includes citizenship material. However if she is absent form the UK for 2 years then her Visa will be revoked and you would have to start from scratch again to re-enter the UK at a later date.

    Given your longer term plans, she would in my opinion be better to take the 'Life in the UK' test. This gives her the ILR (Indefinate Leave to Remain) Visa, but she can then apply for British citizenship. This would make any future travelling plans easier for both of you and should you wish to return to the UK at any time it's not a problem.

    We have some dedicated pages for information about marriage, Visa's, and checklists of things to do after your wife arrives locked in one section. If you have time it's worth reading. http://nanninginfosite.editboard.com/f13-summary-marriage-visas-after-your-wife-arrives

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by elf on 22/05/11, 01:40 pm

    Thanks handyal, appreciate all the info.

    ShanShan decided to go ahead with IELTS having got a 4.0 in a mock. She's taking 10 days off before the exam on 11th June to study for it. I must say the standard is insanely high, given average aptitude for the language in the UK. Either way that's a CEFR B1 equivalent, which is good enough for the UKBA.

    Does anyone else think that "either a Bachelor's Degree, or A1 English" presents a ridiculous disparity in requirements here? And on that note, has anyone spoken to a UKBA rep? The sooner we've done our porridge in the UK and can leave, the better. What a joke.

    I'm praying the impending case forces the government to review this process, either way I guess something had to be done and the many ////-takers have just caused a black-white extreme movement causing our circumstances to simply be bad timing.

    Any suggestions, hints or tips for IELTS will be gratefully received. She's been reading Harry Potter, listening to the audiobooks, has several dictionaries, watches streaming episodes of TV (such as Friends - an Asian favourite for teaching English), and we write several times a day to each other. Either way she'd like to achieve the best she can, rather than only what is required. Many thanks in advance.
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by handyal on 22/05/11, 07:43 pm

    Hi elf,
    Although the IELTS conbines a test of reading, writing, listening and speaking the A1 requirement is only for listening and speaking.
    I believe the reading and writing scores can be ignored by the UKBA so I suggest she practices with emphasis on the speaking and listening in order to get a good score in these.
    Instead of writing several times a day, can't you speak to her using Skype or such.

    The current government jumped on the idea set by the previous Labour party to introduce a language test.
    Unfortunately they implimented it almost immediately without having the means to have suitable training or testing facilities available.
    A1 to Batchelors degree as the only acceptance of language skills is ridiculous, especially as when they enter the UK they then have to persue an ESOL grade in order to gain ILR. A1 is the minimum but any English Language qualification above A1 should be accepted.
    Forgeries are so common throughout Asia so I'm guessing they want to control the test centres and the test certificates.

    I don't think the current cases being brought against the UK Immigration will have little impact especially in view of the fact that 15 of the 22 schengen countries have voted to re-establish border controls.

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by elf on 22/05/11, 08:33 pm

    To be honest her speaking is nigh-on fluent. It's the reading and writing that needs work. She's worked in hostels and hotels since graduation, so her aural ability puts most (if not all), chavs to shame.

    Either way I stumbled across a Lyca mobile stand at London Euston, and so now I can call her at lunch time for just 3ppm.

    Do you know how the scoring works for IELTS? If she aced the speaking and listening, but didn't do so well in reading or writing, would she receive individual grades for each, and then an averaged total? Or in other words - what's written on the all-important certificate?

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Graham on 23/05/11, 05:52 am

    elf wrote:T

    Does anyone else think that "either a Bachelor's Degree, or A1 English" presents a ridiculous disparity in requirements here? And on that note, has anyone spoken to a UKBA rep?

    Fay has BSc in business economics,taken in English.
    She was the company translator,taken to USA for meetings, etc.
    Does not seem to matter that her English qualifications are higher than mine.

    Oh well, now we just need to wait for the results, Fay is sure that her reults will be 100%, or very close to.
    Results are due 23 June.
    Then to see if they are accepted by UKBA.
    There is a question if they (Cambridge ESOL A2) will be accepted by UKBA, venue query maybe,
    If not accepted, she can do again, no worries, just a bit of fun for her.

    Weifang

    sunny
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by MadGee on 23/05/11, 11:40 am

    elf wrote:Do you know how the scoring works for IELTS? If she aced the speaking and listening, but didn't do so well in reading or writing, would she receive individual grades for each, and then an averaged total? Or in other words - what's written on the all-important certificate?


    Each of the four modules are individually marked and noted on the certificate. (This could have now changed.)
    They are then combined, divided by four and rounded up to the nearest 0.5 mark for the total band score.

    To my knowledge, only the listening and speaking modules are needed at a minimum of band 4 level to satisfy the UKBA.

    Worth a mention:
    Although a mock exam can be close to the real thing, it also can be very different!

    Preparation for the speaking module is essential, I know many 'fluent' Chinese English speakers who have got low marks in this module, simply because they thought they could communicate very well in English so didn't bother preparing. IELTS is not like KET or PET exams, it's more demanding on the use of vocabulary and grammatical sentence structures.
    Lots of practice tests available on the net.

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by david larner on 11/11/11, 04:24 pm

    Can anyone tell me if there is an approved language centre in Shenzhen or surrounding area for my financee to learn and take an english test

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Graham on 11/11/11, 05:32 pm

    Hello David,

    I think HandyAl has covered the locations on page 1 of this thread.

    By the way,,,, Welcome

    Graham Weifang sunny

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by david larner on 13/11/11, 12:16 am

    Thank you I should havelooked futher back !
    David
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by handyal on 13/11/11, 01:18 am

    Hi David and welcome to the forum.

    I notice you want a centre where your wife can learn English, so you should look for the 'Internal Centres'.

    Courses can last 6 months and cost 15,000RMB, then the test fee of 1,500RMB.

    You can choose an IELTS course or an ESOL course (which is simpler).
    For the up to date approved centres use this link:
    http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/applicationforms/new-approved-english-tests.pdf

    Click on ESOL test centres, then do a search, or,
    Click on IELTS test centres, then do a search.

    Any problems, don't be afraid to ask.

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by david larner on 17/11/11, 09:11 pm

    Thanks to all for your help.
    Sophie has been in touch with the Visa centre and they have found her a course at Guangzhou which is a couple of hours away. I am spending as much time with her on skype as I can the course has cost 4000rmb. She is taking a distance course to fit in with her work as soon as she gets the materials we will start !
    David.
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    A1 English exam and learning

    Post by chengdu on 28/11/11, 09:33 pm

    hello every one , i am a newbie here on the forum i have had a look at differant postings
    and i think that the forum is very informative and helpful ,
    my situation is this !!!! my wife lives in chengdu and as been teaching herself english with great difficulty
    the only way i can see is that she will need lessons before
    taking the( A1 English of the european frame work ) EXAM so as my wife lives as i say in chengdu, which is the nearest location for her to go ? SOMETIMES THINGS CAN BE CONFUSING
    and of course the modules are the basic in listening and speaking as laid down by the UKBA
    all your help will be aprreciated

    i hope to have a involment very much in the forum and make many new friends
    keep up the good work guy best wishes from joey (chengdu) and my wife sophia Very Happy
    ps hope i have posted in the right place

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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Graham on 29/11/11, 12:58 am

    Hi Joey,

    Hi, and welcome.
    Are you in China now, yourself?

    There is a growing number of westerners, and especially UK persons, who have now realised the charms of the East.

    Graham Weifang sunny
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by slowheel on 29/11/11, 05:13 am

    Hi Joey, Welcome, my wife also lives in that great city of Chengdu, sorry I can't help you with your quest for English courses, at the moment we in Australia are luck as our wives dont need to speak english to get a partner visa,

    slow
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by Chris Seaborn on 29/11/11, 07:03 am

    Hello Joey, and another welcome to the Forum from Australia. As a Moderator on the Forum I can say we have a very good bunch of members who are all willing to help you, we are all from different walks of life..but are tied together with a common interest.

    As Slow has stated, we don't actually have a 'test' here, yet, but to get your visa to Australia a basic 'test' during the interview is common, and I do say basic! And then our wives' get 500 odd hours free English lessons after they arrive, hope I'm not rubbing it in too much! LOL. You Brits do have an advantage...distance, many in the UK get together socially, which is a bit hard for us to do here in OZ.

    Cheers mate,
    Chris.
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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by handyal on 29/11/11, 10:17 pm

    Hi Joe,
    Welcome to the forum.

    Read post no.18 carefully on this topic and follow the instructions.

    I couldn't find any centres in Chengdu offering the Cambridge ESOL test (which is the easier route), only IELTS testing is available.

    Cambridge IELTS.
    http://www.ielts.org//test_centre_search/results.aspx?TestCentreID=de0c01b1-3a22-4824-9e9e-0665e0ebc44a
    Sichuan University, Chengdu

    Address:
    Examinations Office
    Intensive Language Training Centre, Sichuan University
    No.24 Nan Yi Duan, First Ring Road
    Chengdu
    610065

    Tel: 86 28 8540 7413
    Fax: 86 23 8540 4308
    Email: kszxyx@yahoo.com.cn
    Web: http://ielts.etest.net.cn

    Test Fee: RMB 1550

    Date Academic General Training (GT)
    7-Jan-2012
    14-Jan-2012
    4-Feb-2012
    18-Feb-2012
    25-Feb-2012
    10-Mar-2012
    17-Mar-2012
    14-Apr-2012
    21-Apr-2012
    12-May-2012
    19-May-2012
    16-Jun-2012
    30-Jun-2012
    7-Jul-2012
    21-Jul-2012
    28-Jul-2012
    4-Aug-2012
    11-Aug-2012
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    1-Sep-2012
    15-Sep-2012
    22-Sep-2012
    13-Oct-2012
    20-Oct-2012
    3-Nov-2012
    24-Nov-2012


    Test date: http://www.chinaielts.org/en/apply/ielts_test_dates.shtml



    The British Council (operating in China as the Cultural and Education Section of the British Embassy/Consulates-General), on behalf of the China IELTS Network and in collaboration with National Education Examinations Authority, administers IELTS in 38 test centres throughout China.



    To register for an IELTS test in mainland China, please visit the online registration website at http://ielts.etest.net.cn. The test fee is RMB1550, which can be paid online. In addition, you will be able to check your candidate number and interview time online in advance. Once the test is completed, you can check your score online ten working days after the test.

    Full instructions in both English and Chinese are available on the site. An IELTS national call centre has been set up to provide bilingual service for those requiring further help. Contact details are T: 86-10-6279 8811; Email: ielts@mail.neea.edu.cn

    For more information about test venues, test date availability and IELTS public presentations information please visit IELTS China website www.chinaielts.org.

    The four British Council offices in China administer the IELTS test in the following four regions:

    North and Central China

    East China

    South China

    South West China


    avatar
    MadGee
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    Registration date : 2008-06-17

    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

    Post by MadGee on 30/11/11, 02:16 am

    Hi Joey,
    Welcome to the forum!

    There is no A1 test as such. A1 is a defined level achieved in various tests, the higher the mark, obviously the higher the level achieved.

    http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/applicationforms/new-approved-english-tests.pdf

    Also the test must be done at an approved UKBA test centre.

    http://cambridgeesol-centres.org/centres/search.do;jsessionid=09A32CA996EC513D997523DA33A635D8.node01?source=candidateexam&country=CN&qualification=ALL

    Some centres are 'internal' so studying for the test must be done at their centre. Although there is one in Chengdu, the exams would not be suitable IMO.
    Just click on a centre to find out what exams they test.

    Also, there is talk about the level being raised for immigrant partners in the near future. Rules are changing quickly ... A1 level today, B1 level tomorrow!

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2011/aug/02/uk-proposes-toughermigration-rules

    Hope this helps!



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    Re: Fiancee Visa - A1 English Test requirement

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      Current date/time is 20/10/18, 07:29 pm