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China relaxes requirements for visa on arrival


China will simplify visa requirements to facilitate foreign travel for business, education, and tourism. This move is aimed at revitalising a sluggish economy. These steps include allowing foreigners to apply for re-entry visas, simplifying visa applications, and permitting those who need to enter China urgently for work or other reasons to apply for port visas or visas on arrival. The National Immigration Administration has outlined five steps to attract foreign travelers. China’s state broadcaster reported on 11th January 2024 that these measures are part of China’s broader efforts to attract foreign travelers since it reopened its borders at the start of 2023 after pandemic restrictions were lifted.


1. Relax the conditions for foreigners applying for port visas.

Foreign nationals who need to come to China urgently for non-diplomatic and official activities such as business cooperation, visits, exchanges, investment, entrepreneurship, visiting relatives, and handling private affairs, but do not have time to apply for a visa abroad, may apply to the port visa authority with invitation letters and other relevant supporting materials. Please note that this option is only available for urgent situations and should not be used as a regular means of entry.


2. Foreigners may transit directly through Beijing Capital Airport and other airports for up to 24 hours without undergoing inspection procedures.

24-hour free transit for passengers will be implemented at the following nine international airports: Beijing Capital Airport, Beijing Daxing Airport, Shanghai Pudong Airport, Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport, Xiamen Gaoqi Airport, Guangzhou Baiyun Airport, Shenzhen Bao’an Airport, Chengdu Tianfu Airport, and Xi’an Xianyang Airport. Inbound and outbound passengers with international connecting tickets within 24 hours, transiting to a third country or region through any of the above airports, can skip border inspection procedures and transit without a visa.


3. Foreigners in China can apply for visa extension, replacement, and reissue.

Foreigners visiting China for non-diplomatic and official activities, such as business cooperation, investment, entrepreneurship, visiting relatives, sightseeing, and handling private affairs, may apply for a visa extension, replacement, or re-issuance at the nearest Exit-Entry Administration Bureau if they have legitimate reasons to continue their stay.


4. Foreigners in China who need multiple entries and exits may apply for re-entry visas.

If a foreigner needs to enter and exit China multiple times for legitimate reasons, they can apply to the Exit-Entry Administration Bureau to replace their current visa with a valid multiple-entry visa, using an invitation letter and other relevant supporting materials.


5. Simplify visa application materials for foreigners in China.

Foreigners applying for visa documents may be exempt from providing paper certification materials if their accommodation registration records, business licenses, and other information can be verified through information sharing. For short-term family visit and reunion visas, a statement of kinship from the inviter can be used instead of proof of kinship.


Resource: The State Council The People’s Republic of China https://www.gov.cn/lianbo/fabu/202401/content_6925373.htm

Disclaimer: The above-mentioned information may change. Expats Holidays is not responsible for the accuracy of the travel policy given by the government. Thank you for taking the time to read the above information. If you need any support, we are always here for you.