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Stop the boats

To help deliver on the Prime Minister’s promise to stop small boats, we will work as part of a whole-system approach to deter those seeking to travel to the UK through dangerous or illegal methods. 

By collaborating with international partners and delivering a mix of PR, community engagement and targeted multilingual digital campaigns, we will counter messaging from organised criminal gangs and ensure potential irregular migrants understand the dangers of crossing, the consequences of  illegal entry and the potential for failure. We will also provide information on the safe and legal migration routes available, as well as the support for individuals using those routes. 

More broadly, the UK border and immigration system is being transformed and digitised by 2025 to benefit customers, the economy, and border security. Our communications will help to build confidence and trust that the system is orderly, controlled, flexible and supports the economy. To support the introduction of an Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) scheme and the roll out of eVisas, we will use owned and earned channels to reach target audiences in the UK and abroad, working closely with key stakeholders such as travel carriers. Highly-targeted paid media will then be used at critical points to amplify the reach of messaging, and ensure individuals understand the actions required.

The ‘Study UK’ campaign will continue to recruit international students to our world-class universities, using a combination of digital advertising and direct engagement and events. 

We will attract top science and tech talent from across the globe with the hyper-targeted, digital ‘GREAT Talent’ marketing campaign. Based on audience insight, our communications will showcase the UK as an attractive destination to work and live, as well as the government’s work to create the right environment for innovation. We will also promote the visa routes available to highly-skilled individuals in science, R&D and technology, including the Global Talent visa.

Measured by:

  • Increase in awareness and knowledge of the risks and consequences of travelling to the UK by illegal methods.
  • Awareness and understanding of new digital visa requirements among migrants in the UK and potential international visitors.
  • Increase in consideration for studying in the UK (vs other countries) amongst target audience.
  • Awareness and understanding of Global Talent and related visa routes amongst highly-skilled individuals in science, R&D and technology. 
  • Consideration of the UK as a place where highly-skilled individuals in science, R&D and technology can succeed professionally, personally and academically.
  • Reported behaviour in taking positive actions towards moving to and studying in the UK.