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The article below provides important information about travel to China. For comprehensive Visa Application instructions, please see the specific Visa Requirements page for your Visa Type (business, tourist, etc). Our step-by-step instructions guide you through the process. We guarantee the accuracy of your application and expedite it with the appropriate Consulate. Our team is here to help with online chat, phone & email support.

09/14/2012

China Visa Types



China Visa Types

All US passport holders must apply for a visa in order to enter China. The overseas Chinese visa authorities are Chinese embassies, consulates, and other offices authorized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China. If a you intend to enter into, exit from or transit through Chinese territory, you must apply for a Chinese visa to the above-mentioned Chinese visa authorities.

Passport Visas Express is happy to assist you in sorting through the type of visa you require as well as in applying and processing this visa for you. We have a variety of informational pages and a host of experts to walk you through your planning!

There are four general types of visas: diplomatic, courtesy, service, and ordinary. Ordinary visas are organized by letter types, as follows. Please click on the name of the visa for more information on requirements, lengths of stay, and how to apply.  

Ordinary visas

Tourist visa (L)

This visa is for tourists, travelers visiting family in China, or for other personal reasons. If you’re taking a cruise that stops in mainland China, this is the visa for you—check out our page on cruising to and around China.

Business visa (F)

This visa is for those invited into China to engage in business, attend lectures and conferences or any exchange on sciences, culture, technology, conduct research, and for internships. If you are a journalist, see below for the J-2 visa.

Work visa (Z)

This visa is for those to be employed in China, as well as to his or her family members. This includes teachers. If you are a journalist, see below for the J-1 visa.

Student visa (X)

This visa is issued to students as well as those intending to study or intern in China for more than 6 months.

Transit visa (G)

If you are passing through China on the way to another country, and your stay in China will be over 24 hours, you must have a G visa. You will also need this if you intend on leaving the airport, regardless of the length of your stay.  

Crew visa (C)

This visa is intended for crew members who work on international trains, airlines, or any such vessel, as well as for his or her family members.

Journalist resident visa (J-1)

If you are a journalist or correspondent staying in China long-term, you are required to have the J-1 visa.

Journalist foreigner visa (J-2)

If you are a journalist or correspondent staying in China for temporary coverage or short-term assignments, you are required to have a J-2 visa.

Permanent resident visa (D)

This visa is issued to those seeking to reside permanently in China.


Diplomatic visa

Apply for a diplomatic visa with us here.


Group visa

Group visas are available to tourists traveling in groups of five or more. This group must arrive, stay, and depart together—please check our page here on more details.  


Visa-free entry into China

There are a few minor exceptions to requiring a visa to China, as follows:

1. Singapore, Brunei, and Japan passport holders are exempt from needing a visa for visits of up to 15 days, for business, touring, or visiting family and friends.

2. Those in transit, for example, in a flight layover in China, are permitted to stay for under 24 hours and must stay in the airport. Detailed information is here.

3. Those in transit at the Pudong Airport or Hongqiao Airport of Shanghai, provided they hold valid passports, visas for the onward countries, final destination tickets and have booked seats, and stay in Shanghai for less than 48 hours. These must be passport holders from Republic of Korea, United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxemburg, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Austria, Greece, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Iceland.

Need help deciding what you need? Need help with your application? Help yourself by letting us help you! We will review your application, deliver it to the embassy, and mail you your new visa in the time that works for you. Check out our site, call our friendly customer service at 1-888-596-6028, or chat with our representatives! Then spend the rest of your time thinking about what you can do in China, and leave the hows to us!

 

 


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