You can register and pay for IELTS quickly and easily through our Online Registration Service or IELTS registration centres. Now you can receive your free practice book delivered to you within 5 days if you register and pay online. For more information read instructions below.

To register, simply follow the steps below:


Download and read the Information for Candidates (PDF, 933 kb) which contains important information about the test format, the question types and the test results. Please note that IELTS is not recommended for candidates under the age of 16. 


There are two versions of the IELTS test:

IELTS Academic
This is recommended for candidates who plan to undertake academic studies. 

IELTS General Training
This is recommended for candidates to use at work, work-related training or for migration.

Note: It is strongly recommended that you also check with the organisations you wish to apply for before you book your test.


Places are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, so we strongly recommend that you register online at least two months prior to the test date. You can use our Online Registration System or visit our test dates, fees, and locations page to find up-to-date information about test dates and availability.

Please note: 
Your Listening, Reading and Writing tests will be completed on the same day. Your Speaking test will be carried out within 5 working days from your written test date (Except for Saturday and Sunday). The exact schedule will be communicated to candidates at least 3 days prior to your written test date.


Use our Online Registration System to register for the test.

Before going on to the Online Registration System, please ensure you read the instructions given below in Step 5 (uploading the passport copy) and Step 6 (payment options) carefully. This is the most convenient way to register for the test and saves you time. Please note that the free practise book you are entitled to cannot be claimed at our customer service counter if you make the payment online. Please refer Step 7 for further details on how to get your free practise book.


In order to complete your registration process, you need to submit a copy (in colour)of your valid passport. You have two options to submit this documents to the British Council.

Option 1 - Uploading passport copy during the online registration process

During the online registration process, upload a coloured and clearly legible copy of your valid Passport (the details page of the passport). The document copy must contain your personal details, a photograph, ID number, DOB, the expiry date and your signature. 

Please note: your scanned document must be in JPEG, GIF or PNG format. The dimensions must be smaller than 1600 by 1600 pixels and the file size should be 1.5MB or less. If you are unsuccessful in uploading the file or skip this step during your online registration, please note that you cannot return to this screen later to complete the upload. In this case, the passport copy submission should be done using option 2 given below.  

OPTION 2 - Emailing your passport copy after the registration

If the uploading is unsuccessful or you skipped the uploading step, you can submit the above document at the time of making your payment at the British Council counter (see step 6 to find out details about the payment options) or by emailing along with your online registration reference number.

We strongly encourage you to use option 1 when submitting the passport copy. 

Expatriates: You are required to submit a copy of your valid visa documentation when you present yourself on the test day.

Important note

We need to receive all documents within 5 days of your online registration. Unfortunately, if we do not receive documents within 5 days your application will be cancelled. 

We cannot process incomplete applications, so please make sure you have either upload or send us all the necessary information as per the instructions provided above. 


The cost of sitting a test in Sri Lanka is Rs. 21,200 (up to December 2016) and Rs. 22,500 (from January 2017). The cost of sitting a test in the Maldives is MVR 3300.

When you register online you have the following payment options: 

Pay online

If you wish to pay online for your IELTS registration, please pick the 'Pay Online' option where you can use your Credit/Debit Card at the time of registration to make the payment. We only accept Visa or Mastercard.

Please ensure you have your card details with you before starting the registration, as you will not be able to go back and pay online for the same date once you complete the online registration process.

Pay later (Offline)

If you failed to pay online, please select the 'Pay Later' option to complete your online registration. In order to confirm your registration, you have to pay the IELTS exam fee within 5 days of completing this online registration using any of the below methods.

At the British Council offices (Colombo and Kandy)

Pay by cash or credit card at the British Council offices in Colombo or Kandy Find out the opening hours for our branches.

Direct Bank Transfer

Make a Direct Bank Transfer to the British Council account at HSBC (Slips or RTGS only). Locate your nearest HSBC branch

Bank name: HSBC
Account name: British Council Sri Lanka
Account number: 001-002377-002
Message: IELTS, Candidate’s Full Name
(e.g., IELTS, Prabhath Jayasuriya)

For payments made by Direct Bank Transfers, kindly only Email the evidence of your payment together with a copy of your valid passport to within 5 days of completing your online registration. Please don't use the above-stated email address for any other purpose as it is a no-reply mailbox dedicated for Direct Bank Transfers.  

Please note that we DO NOT accept payment slips and passport copies sent to us via post, courier or handed over in person. 

No refunds will be given for bank slips sent to us after the 5th day. Provisionally we will confirm your registration on the receipt of the bank slip and the copy of your valid passport via email. However, failure to verify your payments in our bank records for technical or any other reason will result in us cancelling your test sitting or withholding the Test Result Form until proof of payment is established.

British Council will not be held responsible for any delays in your taking the test or in getting the results due to either not following due process on offline payments as instructed above or in verifying payment made to the bank.

Please note

  • If you wish to pay online during the registration, please choose the 'Pay Online' option at the outset as you are unable to return to that screen once if you click 'Pay Later'. 
  • In case we do not receive the payment within 5 days, your application will be cancelled.


Once you complete the registration (after payment and passport copy submission), you will be entitled to a wide variety of value-added services to help you prepare for your IELTS test. Please read below for more details on the services provided free of charge.

  • Free IELTS practice book with listening CD
    Once you complete your payment you are entitled to a Free IELTS practice book with a listening CD. If you wish to receive the book immediately upon payment, please select to pay later and visit our customer service counter to complete registration or register through one of our partner registration centres
  • Free Online Preparation course - "Road to IELTS"
    Once you complete your payment , you will receive an email containing access details ( User Name : Your email address, Password : Reference Number)  to our free online preparation course - 'Road to IELTS'. 
  • Free IELTS Top Tip Seminar
    You can either register for the free IELTS Top Tip Seminar online or you can also obtain a pass from our Customer Service Counters when completing your registration at the British Council Counters.
  • Library Membership (Reference)
    Please produce your payment receipt and pick up the free reference membership card from the Customer Service or Library Counters where you can use our range of IELTS practice materials until the day of your Speaking Test.
  • Mock Speaking or Writing test
    You can opt for this service by making an additional payment of 3,000 LKR at our Customer Service Counter.

For Online Payments and direct bank transfers

You will receive all the information stated above via email when you complete the registration along with your admission which includes further information about your test dates and the payment receipt. 

Free IELTS preparation book
In order for you to get the free IELTS preparation book please fill in the form available here. Please note that the book will be sent to you via courier within 5 working days and it will not be issued over the counter at British Council. We kindly request you to ensure that you provide a location where someone is available during the day to pick up the package. 


All the above documents and all the above-listed value added services will be offered over the counter at the time of your payment. 

For more information please contact our Exams Services at


You are required to produce your original and valid passport on all test dates. It must be the same Passport of which you have registered for the test.

If you fail to bring your original and valid Passport on the test day, you will not be allowed to continue with your test. You may also lose your entire test fee.

In addition to this, you will also be required to submit a coloured copy of the same Passport on the test day.


IELTS is designed to be a fair test and your English language ability will be assessed objectively, regardless of any special needs that you may have.

We can help you with any special arrangements you require for your test. For example, we offer support for people with visual impairments, hearing difficulties and dyslexia.

Please contact us three months in advance of your test date to find out how you can apply for special arrangements. 


If you want to request a refund, please refer to our refund policy and follow the instructions given below 

  1. Submit a completed IELTS: Test date transfer/refund form and IELTS: British Council refund form  to the relevant test centre no more than five working days before or after the test date (can be downloaded from documents section below)
  2. Please provide appropriate documentation or evidence to support your application – for example, a medical certificate from a MBBS qualified medical practitioner, a death notice or certificate or a police report, as applicable
  3. You will be informed whether or not your application has been approved within one week following the date you submit the above documents.


If you want to transfer to a different test date, please refer to our transfer procedure