Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. I would like to return to my home country. Can IOM UK help?

If you are an irregular migrant, an asylum seeker, or a failed asylum seeker and wish to return to your home country, support might be available via the Home Office Voluntary Returns Service. You can find out more information here, via phone on 0300 004 0202 (Monday - Friday between 09.00 and 17.30) or email using They have a programme called ‘voluntary return’ which can help with the cost of your flight. 

They also have a programme called ‘assisted return’ which can include a cash grant to help find somewhere to live, find a job or help start a business. Please note that this is a government implemented programme and you will therefore be sharing your details with them if you choose to contact them. Non-EEA national adults may also be subject to a re-entry ban by taking ‘assisted’ or ‘voluntary’ return. Please also be aware that the Home Office website also states “You can be forced to return to your home country if you withdraw your application or don’t follow the application process”.

2. I am a victim of trafficking / I am in contact with a victim of trafficking. Can IOM UK help?

IOM UK cannot assist victims of human trafficking and modern slavery who need urgent assistance. If you are a victim, or if you are in contact with a victim, and require help urgently, we recommend that you contact the police.

If you are not in an urgent situation, you can contact the Modern Slavery Helpline for further advice on 0800 0121 700.
For assistance with temporary accommodation and support, as well as referrals into the National Referral Mechanism, please contact the Salvation Army on 0300 303 8151.

3. I am a victim of trafficking and would like to return home. Can IOM UK help?

Where there is allocated funding and projects in place, IOM’s country offices could support you with returning home and further reintegration assistance. The following IOM country offices are currently able to provide such support:
·         Bulgaria
·         Czech Republic
·         Hungary
·         Slovakia
Where funding is not available, country offices may still be able to meet you at the airport upon arrival and take you to your final destination, whether that is your home, a shelter or local organisation for further assistance.
Please contact us at for further information and advice.

4. I am a recognised refugee in the UK and would like my family to be reunited with me here. Can IOM UK help?

If you are a recognised refugee (or have been granted humanitarian protection) and would like to be reunited with your family in the UK, you may be able to apply for support from the British Red Cross through their support services for refugees. If you have a successful application for family reunion through the British Red Cross, they may contact IOM for travel assistance.

5. I would like to be considered for resettlement in the UK. Can IOM UK help?

Unfortunately, IOM UK is not able to directly assist individuals to resettle in the UK. In order to find out if you are eligible for resettlement to the UK or another resettlement State as a recognised refugee, please contact your nearest UNHCR office. The UNHCR resettlement webpage here and the UK Country Chapter in the UNHCR Resettlement Handbook (available here) can also provide you with further general information on resettlement.

For further information on the UK government resettlement programme, please refer to the Home Office website for details of the Gateway Protection Programme and for the Mandate Refugees Scheme

If you have been accepted for resettlement in the UK, IOM will most likely coordinate your pre-departure and travel assistance. 

If you would like information about other ways of relocating to the UK, you can contact your local British Embassy or High Commission for guidance. A list of British Embassies and consulates around the world can be found on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website.

6. I would like advice on claiming asylum in the UK. Can IOM UK help?

For information on how to claim asylum in the UK, please visit the ‘Claim asylum in the UK’ page on the Home Office website.

For independent asylum advice and asylum support advice, your can seek further guidance from Asylum Help or on 0808 8000 630.

7. I would like legal advice about my asylum claim or immigration status. Can IOM UK help?

Unfortunately, IOM UK is not able to provide legal advice or immigration advice. If you are in need of legal advice, private solicitors or specialised agencies will be able to help. In some cases, certain agencies may be able to provide the service free of charge.

Asylum Aid is a specialised agency that may be able to help you. Please contact them on +44 (0)207 354 9264 or email at:

For information about other law firms who may be able to provide asylum and immigration advice you may wish to search the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) Advisor website.

8. I am permanently migrating to another country. Can IOM UK help me with a reduced air fare?

IOM UK offers travel assistance to individuals permanently migrating to other countries. This self-paying service provides individuals with special reduced one-way economy fare and extra baggage allowance, as well as flexible conditions (such as the possibility of re-booking or cancellation without penalty, depending on the airline).

For further information, visit this page, send an email to: or call us on +44 (0)207 811 6000.