Hi i am 20 yr old female US citizen looking to going to scotland to work for a few months next year. My boyfriend lives in musselburgh and we want to see if i can live with him for a few months and work before i start school again in the fall. i'm planning to go as soon as a i can maybe february or january. I will maybe take a class or too at telford college. I've been reading the information about visas but i find it confusing. And i am confused to how to actually apply and which visa i will need. So what is the best option for me to go to scotland? and will i have to have a job before i go if i want a work permit? I live in LA and i know there is a british consulate here so would i have to go there to apply or talk to someone there first?
May be difficult regarding getting a visa to work, as the immigration rules in the UK are being overhauled right now - the BUNAC program for students (or recent students) is currently suspended pending an outcome of negotiations between the UK & US governments.
Another option depends on how serious you & your boyfriend are, and also your studies (which I presume would be in the US). There's the partner route for visas, but again with this the rules are changing and the first one is that as of 27 November an applicant for this kind of visa (spouse) needs to be at least 21.
I live in Oregon and will be going to school in Scotland in January. I was confused about the visa process as well, but it turned out to be pretty easy. Since my program is two years, I applied for a different visa than you will be applying for, but these websites should still be helpful:
As for visiting the consulate, you might try but don't expect too much. From my research, I found that there was a phone number you could call that costs a fortunate and no email address for inquiries. When I sent my visa information to the LA office, I received confirmation emails telling me that I should not contact them. Great!