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Frequently Asked Questions

China Travel Designer offers you the most frequently questions and answers about China Trips. To make your trip more convenient and pleasant, we have carefully selected a list of necessary travel related information for your trip preparation.If you have your own questions about your China Trip, please contact our travel advisors via On-line help or simply send us an e-mail and get reply in 24 hours.

Visa Issue

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How to get visa before my visit to China?

All people of non-Chinese nationality need a Chinese Visa to enter China. To successfully apply for a Chinese Visa, applicants should come in person or through a third party (e.g. Travel Agent or Tour Operator) to apply for the Chinese visa during office hours 9 -12 am in Chinese Embassy / Chinese Consulates-General in the country you live. Usually, the processing time is about 5- 7 working days.

Applications by Mail: It takes 2 weeks to process the application, so there is no same day or express day service. It is advised that your passport(s) should be sent by registered post for security and proof of posting needs to be kept. Please enclose a self-addressed envelope, the visa application form and payment (visa fee and service fee---see item: visa fee).

You should send a stamped, self-addressed envelope with your application together with the appropriate fee.

Single-entry China visas are usually valid for 3 months after the issue date, and will permit you to stay in China for a maximum of 30 days. This visa will allow you to travel as a tourist or conduct general business activities. Most people need only to apply for a single-entry.

You need to apply for "double" or "multiple” entry Visa if you need to leave and re-entering Mainland China. Please keep in mind that even when you leave for Hong Kong, Macao from Mainland China, you still need to have "double" or "multiple" entry Visa.

How long is the period of validity of China visas?

A Single and Double entry China visa will last 90 days from the date of issue. Within 90 days (please note the time difference between China and the U.S.) you can enter China. And from the date of your entrance, you can stay in China for 30 days (the duration period is written in the visa label).
A Multiple entry China visa (Business Only) lasts 6 months from the date of issue. Within 180 days (please note the time difference between China and the U.S.) you can enter China. And from the date of your entrance, you can stay in China for 30 days (the duration period is written in the visa label).

How to get an invitation letter from your company for my visa application?

In order to apply for a visa to our country, you may need an invitation letter from an official travel company. China Travel Designer will supply this letter to our clients to our clients after they confirm the package tour booking by written form.

What information should we offer to get the invitation letter?

In some of the countries, the visa office of China Embassy or Consulate might ask for a Visa Invitation Letter, usually issued by a travel agent in China. And China Travel Designer will offer the invitation letter to the clients who booked our package tour. And in order to issue this invitation letter for your visa, we need following information:

1). Name (must be the same as those on your passport)
2). Gender
3). Date of birth
4). Passport Number

I have to return to the mainland after visiting Hong Kong. Should I apply for a single or a double-entry visa?

Absolutely. Double-entry visa means you can enter into mainland of China twice within 90 days. Since you are going to the mainland of China twice, you must have a double-entry visa. Although being part of China, Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region.

How to have my visa extended?

Foreigners who want to stay in China beyond the duration of their visa need to apply for an extension. The visa extension application should be form submitted to the Local Public Security Bureau 7 days before the expiration date of the visa.

Foreigners who want their visa to be extended should provide the following evidential materials:
1. Valid passport and visa
2. A completed application form for visa extension
3. Reason for the extension.

The length of the extension depends on the type of visa, but the multiple entry visas cannot be extended

You are advised not to overstay the duration of your visa or fail to apply for an extension before your visa expires as you will risk being heavily fined and have your travel plans disrupted.

Should I apply for visa now, or should we wait until we are closer to the time of travel?

The Chinese visa is generally valid for 3 months from the issue date to enter China. Please apply for your visa within 3 months of entry into China according to your travel itinerary, and avoid expiry of visa or extra cost of urgent fee due to lack of application process time. Please also decide the duration of stay in China. The permitted duration of stay of Chinese visas are generally up to 30 days. If you need to stay longer, please apply to the local public security bureau in China for visa extension.

What should I do if I lose my passport during my stay in China?

If you do lose your passport, call your guide or travel advisor for help and notify the local Public Security Bureau (PSB) immediately. The PSB will then issue you a proof of lost passport, with which (if without PSB’ s proof you may not enter into your country’s consulate or embassy, because it is softly guarded), you need to go to the nearest embassy or consulate of your own country to apply for a new passport. To have the passport replacement, you will need to know all the information previously recorded and show identification and proof of citizenship. With the new passport issued, you can get a new Visa in the PSB, so you can go on your trip or re-enter your country. Please note that in some cases, a replacement may take weeks to process, and it may be valid only for a limited time. So take special care of your passport in your journey.

What extra documents do we need to apply for the individual tourist visa?

When apply for a tourist visa, some extra documents are required sometimes besides the basic general requirements:
1) For individual tourist visa, a letter of confirmation of the tour arrangement made by a travel agency in China or letter of reservation of hotel in China is required.
2) For group tourist visas, a confirmation letter from a provincial tourist bureau or a government-authorized Chinese travel agency; a name list of the whole group in triplicate and one copy of the information page of each passport are required.

Foreigners from countries, which have visa agreements with China, are treated in accordance with these agreements.

Visitors who want to go to Tibet need to acquire the consent of the Tourism Administration of the Tibet Autonomous Region or any one of its foreign representative offices.

Foreigners requesting to visit Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Xiamen and other Special Economic Zones may apply directly to visa authorities in these zones for tourist visas. Foreign tourist groups from Hong Kong for a 72-hour visit to the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone are exempted from entry visas.
Tourist visas are usually valid for three months, but can be extended for an extra month at the Foreigners Section of the Public Security Bureau. Passports must be valid for at least six months before you travel to China.

Do I need visa for a visit to Hong Kong?

Residents of most countries can enter Hong Kong without applying for a visa in advance and are allowed to stay for 90 days. A visa will be issued on arrival.

Do I need a visa to enter Macao as a tourist?

Residents of the following countries would be granted visa-free entry to Macao. Passport holders of other countries not specified hereunder should apply a visa for entry admission.

Asia
India, Indonesia, Japan, Lebanon, South Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand

Europe
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom

Africa
Egypt, Seychelles, South Africa

America
Brazil, Canada, Mexico, USA, Uruguay

Oceania
Australia, Kiribati, New Zealand, Samoa

How much should I pay for my visa?

The visa fees vary greatly according to your nationality, the number of entries, the country you are applying in and whether you need an express service or not. Generally speaking, the visa fees are more expensive if the visa has more number of entries. However, the visa fees are same for American citizens no matter what number of entries they apply for.

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