How to Get a Chinese Visa
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For most people around the globe, wanting to go to China means they need a visa. There can be different reasons for wanting to go varying from visits for business, tourism, or even permanently moving there. Irrespective of what the reason is, there are many barriers, and getting a visa is one of them.
However, you don’t need to worry anymore, as this detailed article will help you understand the Chinese visa application process and the procedures you need to go through for obtaining a visa to China.
Before diving into the actual process, it is important to understand that each country has its own visa policy and to get a visa, you need to apply at the office of the immigration authorities of the country you are planning to visit i.e. China.
Before moving to the next steps, it is advisable for visa applicants to pay attention to the restrictions due to COVID-19. If you’re planning to visit China, we recommend that you check the updated requirements for Chinese visa application here.
Step 1 – Check If Visa is Required or Not
First of all, you will need to make sure whether you require a visa. A valid passport, travel tickets, and sufficient money are required for immigration checks even if you are exempt from the visa requirements of China’s visa-free policies.
If you aren’t eligible for any visa free policy, determine which visa you need based on the purpose of your trip. Consider China Visa Types before deciding which one is best for you. It is best to use the L visa for visitors.
Step 2 – Make All the Required Documents Ready
All visas require a passport and a visa application form with a recent photo attached. And for that, you don’t need to stand in long lines and waste your precious time. You now have the option to DIY passport photos with the help of an easy visa photo tool. Using this software, it is quite simple to make a visa photo from the comfort of your home.
In addition, you’ll need a variety of supporting documents depending on the sort of visa you’re applying for. A round-trip plane ticket, hotel reservation, or letter of invitation from a China travel agency are all acceptable forms of supporting documentation when applying for a tourist L visa.
Consult your local Chinese embassy, consulate, or CVASC for information on obtaining a Chinese visa. You have the option of doing this yourself or having an agent handle it for you. Mail service is available in various consular and CVASC offices.
Step 3 – Application Processing
The standard processing period is four working days, which includes the day you submit your application and the day you collect it. Keep in mind that Chinese public holidays may result in additional days off from work. Paying additional money frequently speeds up the processing of your application.
In most cases, you may expect your application to be completed overnight and ready for pick-up the following day. However, some offices may process your application the same day if you attend as soon as the office opens. In general, plan on submitting your application as far in advance as possible to account for any unexpected delays.
Step 4 – Paying Visa Fees
The cost of a China visa varies greatly depending on your nationality, the number of required entries, the country from which you are applying, and whether you want a quick service or not. Fees range from $30 to $90 for citizens of other nations, while for American citizens, its cost is $140.
Normally, this amount is paid at the time of visa pickup; however certain locales require payment at the time of application. According to the number of entries on the issued visa, most embassies and consulates levy fees.
Chinese Visa expenses tend to rise in direct proportion to the number of entries you have. Even if you apply for many visas to nations such as the United States, United Kingdom, or Canada, you will be charged the same cost each time. In addition, express services cost more money.
That was the step-by-step guide you can follow to get a Chinese visa. It is recommended to apply for a visa at least 1 or 2 months before your departure. Moreover, it is usually not possible to renew or extend a China visa once granted.
However, in certain circumstances, it can be done by applying within China. For any applicant residing in a third country, requirements can become different as compared to applying from your own country.
If you need any further information regarding the application process for getting a new visa, you can visit the official website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China.