Which is the best UK visa to apply for first
Every day Thai citizens are refused UK visas for simple applying for the wrong visa. Many UK sponsors (boyfriend) are advised by friends or visa consultants to apply for a fiancee visa first. As this is the most likely visa to be issued. But this is not the case.
A fiancee visa is issued for 6 months and will allow your Thai girlfriend to visit the UK and get married. But at the end of the 6 months must return to the UK
If your Thai girlfriend has not been to the UK before, I would strongly suggest that you do not apply for a fiancee visa first. Lets look at the reasons why. When you apply for a UK fiancee visa, you are suggesting that you plan on getting married in the UK. You are saying that your relationship is at a level where you wish to commit the rest of your life to one another. Even though your Thai girlfriend has never spent time with you in the UK, seen how you live, met your family. The question here is does your Thai girlfriend really know enough about you to be able to really commit to marriage. From a visa application point of view this is the wrong visa to apply for and in many instances will end with a refusal.
Getting a fiancee visa is very difficult and will need much more evidence than if applying for a tourist visa. The visa officer may need more evidence to suggest that the now Thai bride will return to Thailand at the end of the visa period.
The best UK visa to apply for first is a UK tourist visa. With a tourist visa the Thai citizen can arrive in the UK have a holiday, there is a lot of evidence that is needed for a tourist visa, but for the first visa it is the easier of the two. A tourist visa is more likely to be granted on the first visit to the UK than a fiancee.
The best UK visa to apply for first
After the Thai citizen has visited the UK on a tourist visa and returned to Thailand, if you plan on marrying in the UK then a Fiancee visa can be applied for. On this application you would suggest that your Thai girlfriend visited you in the UK, enjoyed the British culture, your family and your way of life. On returning to Thailand the relationship continued and bloomed and you are now ready to get married.