Consulates and embassies

Embassies, consulates and high commissions represent the UK in other countries through the British consul. Find out how the British consul works to protect the interests of UK nationals and dual nationals abroad. You can also find out how to find a British embassy or consulate.

What diplomatic missions are called

Diplomatic missions overseas are the British government’s main offices in other countries, usually in capital cities.

These are usually high commissions or deputy high commissions in Commonwealth countries, and embassies in other countries.

Consular staff sometimes also work in separate buildings called consulates general or consulates.

In some places where there are no diplomatic or consular missions, there are networks of honorary consuls, who work on a voluntary basis and can offer some limited help or put you in touch with the nearest diplomatic mission. 

What the British consul does

The main work of a British consul is to protect the interests of UK nationals. Consular staff can offer practical advice, help and support.

You can find details at this link:

Dual nationals

If you're a dual British national in a third country (that is, a country of which you are not a national), you can get full support. You do not need to be travelling on your British passport.

If you're a dual British national in the country of your other nationality (for example, a dual US-British national in the US), support would not normally be offered.

An exception to this rule may be made if, having looked at the circumstances of the case, it is considered that you are particularly vulnerable. These circumstances might include cases involving a murder or manslaughter, children, forced marriages, or an offence which carries the death penalty.

However, the help provided will depend on the circumstances and the country of your other nationality agreeing to it.

Travelling on an Irish passport

If you are travelling on an Irish passport, you can find useful information at the following link:

More useful links

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