What is the relationship between the validity of a visa, number of entries and duration of stay?
Validity of a visa refers to the period within which the visa holder is allowed to enter China.
The number of entries refers to the number of times the visa holder is permitted to enter China within the visa’s validity.
Duration of stay refers to the longest period the visa holder is allowed to stay in China on each visit, and this is counted from the day following entry into China.
When all the permitted entries are used up, the visa is no longer valid. Even if there are still unused entries, the visa is no longer valid if the validity has already expired. In either case, the visa holder should apply for a new visa if another visit to China is planned.
The holder of a visa is eligible to enter China at any time prior to the expiry of its validity (allowed to enter China before midnight Beijing Time on the last date of its validity) provided that permitted entries on the visa have not been used up; the holder’s planned duration of stay in China must not exceed the duration stated in the visa.
What would be the best time for me to apply for a visa before my planned departure for China?
It is advisable that you apply for a visa one month before your intended date of entry into China but not earlier than three months. The Chinese visa is typically valid for three months. If you apply for a visa too early, the visa may expire before your departure. For instance, if you plan to enter China on July 1, the best time to submit your application would be around June 1 (counting working days only).
Please note that the validity of some visas is equal to or shorter than one month. In that case, you may apply for the visa around two weeks before your intended date of entry into China.
Can I apply for a visa online?
It is not possible to apply for a visa through the Internet currently. You need to submit all the required application documents to the visa centre, and the visa centre staff will then handle your application.
Do I need a visa to enter Hong Kong and Macao?
Kindly refer to the following websites:
The Immigration Department of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region: http://www.immd.gov.hk/
Public Security Police Force of the Government of Macao Special Administrative Region: http://www.fsm.gov.mo/psp/eng/main.html
Do I need to apply for a visa if I transit through Beijing, Shanghai or Guangzhou?
Citizens of 45 countries with valid international travel documents and air tickets for a connecting flight with confirmed date of flight and seat for a third country or region can apply for a 72-hour transit visa exemption at ports of entry in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. For details, please click the following link: http://www.mps.gov.cn/n16/n84147/n84196/3912430.html
Do I have to make an appointment to apply for a visa?
No, you can come to visa center directly .
Can I extend the duration of stay of my visa in China ?
You may apply for an extension of the “duration of stay” of your visa at a local public security authority before it expires, but without an assumption that the application will be automatically approved. Overstay violates the laws of China and will be punished.
What if I lost my pick-up form?
If you lost your pick-up form, you must come in person to collect your passport. Kindly present your photo identity card to the visa centre’s staff for verification. Only after the visa centre confirms your identity card can the passport be released. If you cannot come in person due to some special reason, you can entrust someone else to pick up your passport as long as he or she brings your notarized power attorney as well as his or her and your own identity card.
What shall I do if I find the visa issued on my passport is wrong?
If you find mistakes in your visa after you have left the visa centre, please contact it immediately and follow the instructions given to you.
Could you tell me what articles can I bring into China as a passenger?
Kindly visit the Website of http://www.customs.gov.cn/publish/portal0/ for details.
Does a child need to fill out a visa application form as well?
As an independent applicant, the child needs to fill out a separate visa application form. However, if the child shares the same passport with a principal applicant, this is not required.
Is the service fee the same for a child?
Yes. The visa processing procedure is the same for a child, who is an independent applicant or an accompanying applicant sharing the same passport with the principal applicant. Therefore, the child incurs the same amount of service fee.
I am currently in China. Can I mail my application to you?
No, you can’t. If you are currently in China, you have to exit the country to apply for a Chinese visa. Application acceptance is only available to people lawfully residing in the country in which this centre is located.
I am far away from your visa center. Can I mail my application to you?
Yes, you can. You can mail your application to visa centre, and we can send the passport back by FedEx.
Where do I apply for a visa?
If you hold an ordinary passport, you should submit your application at the visa centre. Holders of diplomatic and service (official) passports or applicants eligible to apply for China’s diplomatic, courtesy and service visas, can apply directly to the Chinese Embassy or Consulate General.
Do I have to apply for a visa through a travel agency?
No, you don’t. You can apply for a visa through a travel agency or come directly to our office in person or mail your application to the visa centre.