China Visa and Passport Requirements
|Passport required||Return ticket required||Visa required|
To enter China, a passport with at least six months' validity is required by all nationals referred to in the chart above.
Passports must be valid for at least one month from your fixed departure date from Hong Kong for a single entry, 12 months for a double entry or six-month multiple entry, and 18 months for a 12-month multiple-entry visa.
Foreign nationals must carry their passports at all times as police carry out random spot checks; these are more frequent around times of heightened security such as sporting events.
Those wishing to visit Tibet are strongly advised to join a travel group. Individual travellers need an Alien's Travel Permit issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau. Applicants also need to show their Chinese visa.
Visas are required by all nationals referred to in the chart above to enter China, except:
• All nationals above when visiting Hong Kong or Macau only, in which case visas are not required for varying lengths of stay.
• All nationals above when visiting the Pearl River Delta for up to six days as part of an organised tour group from Hong Kong or Macau.
• Nationals of Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the UK and the USA visiting Hainan Province only as part of an approved, organised tourist group for stays of up to 15 days (21 days for German nationals).
When making the visa application you will need to submit a detailed itinerary of all places you plan to visit and all hotel bookings (including addresses and phone numbers and dates of arrival and departure).
Business travellers are required to provide an official invitation from the company or institution in China when applying for a visa.
Visitors must register with the Chinese Public Security Bureau within 24 hours of arrival.
Nationals not referred to in the chart above are advised to contact the embassy to check visa requirements.
Single-entry: £30 (UK nationals), £90 (US nationals), £20 (other nationals).
Double-entry: £45 (UK nationals), £90 (US nationals), £30 (other nationals).
Multiple-entry within six months: £90 (UK nationals), £90 (US nationals), £40 (other nationals).
Multiple-entry within 12 months or more: £180 (UK nationals), £90 (US nationals), £60 (other nationals).
You must also pay a service fee of £36 (standard), £48 (express) or £54 (postal applications).
Single-entry visas are normally valid for three months, double-entry for six months, and multiple-entry either six, 12 or 24 months. A transit visa generally allows you to stay in the country for seven days, but it is valid for either three or six months depending on the number of entries (single/double).
A transit visa is not required if staying in the confines of the airport for more than 24 hours. If leaving the airport, a transit visa is required for some nationalities. However as of 2013, nationals of 45 countries, including those listed in the chart above (except Croatia), are exempt for up to 72 hours and are free to visit the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu. In this case, it is possible to apply for a transit without visa at Beijing Capital International Airport, Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport, Pudong International Airport, Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and Shuangliu Airport.
Consulate (or consular section at embassy). Many consulates (including those in the UK) issue visas through the Chinese Visa Application Service Centre (www.visaforchina.org) rather than directly through the consulate.