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China Visa

Updated:2008-04-27 16:56 | Source:

A visa is another must for international travel. Only if you apply for, and are issued the visa of your target country, are you permitted to enter your target country. There are different visa categories to cover the various reasons for international travel. Please refer to the websites of Chinese embassies in your country on specific directions of obtaining a China visa. Below is a brief introduction to the types of Chinese visas you can obtain.

A China visa is permission/proof issued by Chinese visa issuing authorities permitting foreigners entry to, exit from or transit through China. According to foreigners' status, their purposes for coming to China and the passport type, the Chinese visa issuing authorities may separately issue them the diplomatic visa, courtesy visa, service visa or ordinary visa. For the ordinary visa, there are eight categories, represented by eight Chinese phonetic letters (C, D, F, G, J-1, J-2, L, X, Z) as the visa code.

C Visa (Crewmember Visa): Issued to crewmembers on international aviation, navigation and land transportation missions and their accompanying family members.

D Visa (Residence Visa): Issued to foreigners who are going to live in China permanently.

F Visa (Business/Visit Visa): Issued to foreigners who are invited to China for a visit, research, lecture, business, scientific and cultural exchanges, short-term advanced studies or internships for a period of less than six months.

G Visa (Transit Visa): Issued to people who transit through China. Crew and passengers on an airplane who transit through China will not require a transit visa if they do not leave the airport and their stay in China is less than 24 hours. When transiting through China via Shanghai Pudong or Hongqiao Airport and staying in Shanghai less than 48 hours, the transit visa also is not required so long as you are the national citizen of following countries: South Korea, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, Holland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Austria and Greece. Remember that you are required to have a valid passport, the visa to your target country, and the booked city-by-city airplane tickets, whose date and seat have already be confirmed.

L Visa (Tourist Visa): Issued to those who enter China temporarily for touring, family visiting or other personal affairs.

X Visa (Study/Student Visa): Issued to foreigners who come to China for study or internships for a period of six months or above.

Z Visa (Work Visa): Issued to foreigners who are to take up a post or employment in China, and their accompanying family members.

J Visa (Journalist Visa)

J-1 Visa issued to foreign journalists who are posted to China for at least one year.

J-2 Visa issued to foreign journalists who are on temporary assignment in China.

The Chinese visa issuing authorities refer to the Chinese embassies, the general consulates and other organizations authorized by The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China stationed abroad. If a foreigner wants to enter or transit through China, he should go to the above-mentioned Chinese visa issuing authorities to apply for the required visa. An alternative is he can also find a China tour company for help to avoid the handling procedures.

The ordinary passport holders from Singapore, Brunei and Japan are not required to have visas for business, travel, visit or transit, but they must China within 15 days of their arrival.

China has signed agreements on Mutual Visa Exemption with 64 foreign countries.

The basic procedure and necessary materials that should be prepared for a Chinese visa are:

1. Your valid passport

2. Fill in the visa application form and hand over a recent 2-inch full-face bareheaded half-length photo

3. Pay for the application fee


Editor : 李受恩

Opening ceremony of Beijing Olympics