Chinese visa’s - how long can you stay in China?

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Chinese visa’s - how long can you stay in China?

Avatar for Sean_h
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Looking to apply for a single entry tourist visa for China and plan to spend up to 60 days in China.  Is it possible to get this visa as most websites I have looked at say 30 days is a maximum amount of time you can spend in China.  A visa agency says they can get a 60 day visa although will cost me £20 more than going direct ans not sure what they will do apart from turn up and hand over my form and passport.

     
Avatar for kristiangodfrey
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I think you can get a double entry visa, and if you go to Hong Kong after 30 days then your new entry will last another 30 days. I might be wrong though.

     
Avatar for Bcambridge
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Use the CVASC service (google it) and do it yourself, just download the forms put everything in an envelope and they’ll return it to you by post, it’s easy

     
Avatar for norepeat
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You don’t need to go through a visa service, though they can make things a bit more convenient.

You can request a stay of greater than 30 days when you apply for your visa, but they may just issue a 30-day one anyway. If you get a double entry visa (which you will need if you want to go to Hong Kong or Macau and back into China), the total duration is still 30 days - I don’t think you get two 30-day stays.

If you ask for more than 30 days and don’t get it, just extend your visa once in China. There isn’t usually any problem with one extension if you want to see more of the place.

     
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I got my visa direct through the Embassy in London. Download the forms, sent them off with passport, and a week later passport came back with visa - simple!! Or you can fill in the forms and go to the embassy in person which was cheaper but not necessarily convenient. On those forms you can apply for a single entry 30 day visa or for a 60 day double entry visa. See here for more info. http://www.chinese-embassy.org.uk/eng/lsyw/chivisa/

     
Avatar for Sean_h
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Cheers for the advice, will apply direct and hope I get a 60 day visa

     
Avatar for Mica
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Hopefully not stupid Qs but I can’t find definite answers and my brain is now fried…

I’m not sure of my arrival date in China as I’ll be travelling in SE Asia for a few months first. If I pick a rough date on my applcation form do I need to enter on that date? I assumed not, but then I have been advised to have a night’s stay booked somewhere for that night (and my travel into China from HK?) - is this just to get the visa and won’t matter when I enter? Would you also advise this?

Also, so I can sort my visa in London before I leave and avoid having to do that in Hong Kong (unless you think this is a better option?) I need to buy a double entry visa as you can’t apply for a single entry more than 3 months in advance of entering. Do I then need to pretend that I will enter twice or will the reason above be enough?

Thanks for any help!

     
Avatar for Uk_vette
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It is very easy to go to Manchester also, for your Chinese visa.
Unless London is closer lol

Simply mark on your application form, that you want 60 days, and 2 entries.
You can not have multiple entries on a 30 day, or a 60 day tourist visa.
You will only get multiple entry if you ask for a ‘F’ visa.
Getting an ‘F’  (bussiness) visa is a little more difficult, but not very difficult.

Like mentioned above, if you are given a 30 day visa, then your 30 days starts from the day you enter China, same go’s with the 60 day visa.
To be honest, I have never seen a 90 day visa, where your allowed to stay 90 days.

‘vette

     
Avatar for Sudders
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Norepeat, you say you don’t need to go thorugh a visa service, however they all seem to point you in that direction?

How do you apply for a Chinese Visa without going through the CVASC?

I find it a rip that they’re charging £36 for the application and the visa itself only costs £30! Money for old rope!

I don’t mind if that’s the only way to do it, however I’ll gladly explore the alternatives if possible!

I live in London if that helps!?

     
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CVASC isn’t a visa service. In the UK it’s the only way to get a visa for China aside from going to the Embassy in person in London.

A visa service is something like VisaHQ.com or similar, where you pay a commission for someone else to organise the visa. It’s a rip off and it’s SO easy to arrange your own visas I find it hard to understand why anyone would use such a company.

     
Avatar for Sean_h
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Also just to point out that the validity of the visa starts counting down from the date of issue rather than when you enter the country and comes with three months validity. 

So for example if you apply for a 60 day visa you must enter china before the first 30 days after the visa was granted, if you enter any later the visa will run out before your 60 days are up.

     
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Also I applied for a 60 day visa through CVASC in mancheser and was granted no problem and returned to me by post within five days so was a really efficient service so I wouldn’t bother with a visa service company.

     
Avatar for Uk_vette
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^^^^ As Sean just said ^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Manchester is very easy,

‘vette

     
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Also just to point out that the validity of the visa starts counting down from the date of issue rather than when you enter the country and comes with three months validity. 

So for example if you apply for a 60 day visa you must enter china before the first 30 days after the visa was granted, if you enter any later the visa will run out before your 60 days are up.

No that’s not right. You have to enter China within 3 months of having the visa issued, but then you get the number of days, the ‘duration’ of the visa. So if you were issued a single entry visa on 20th March 2011 with a 60 days per visit duration then you could enter China up until 20th June 2011 and would have 60 days from that date.

     
Avatar for Sudders
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Alexandra_q2, thanks so much for that info!! You’re right it is a complete rip off and no way should we be paying for someone to sort out a visa.

I’m fortunate enough to live in London so I think I may go to the embassy in person to sort it out.

Can you also advise, do they do it there & then or do we go in person, wait 4 days then go and pick it up? Thanks in advance!

     
Avatar for Macca
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Getting a visa for China was one of the hardest things I had to do on my trip. I initially applied for a visa at the Chinese embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam, but after queing up for a few hours I was told that they don’t issue visa’s to foreign nationals ! I was so shocked, frustrated and angry as all I wanted was to get to China.

I went back to my hostel and had a rant about it to the lady behind the desk. She said she could help me out. Cost about $48 in the end for a 30 day visa, took 8 days and was completely illegal, but I didn’t care. I just wanted to hit China !

As if that wasn’t enough…

I was told by numerous people that applying for a second visa in the country is easy, that they issue it on the spot or within a day. This isn’t the case at all.

Anyway, in the last week I decided to check out a few police and visa offices stations to see if they would give me a second visa. They wouldn’t. The closer you get to Beijing the harder it is to get a visa ! ! If you apply do it at least 12 hours away from Beijing.

China would only give me a second visa if I had a Chinese bank account with over £3,000 in it, or proof that I was leaving the country. Obviously I had neither.

My visa was almost up and I was desperate. In the end, with about 2 hours before the visa office closed in Beijing before my visa ran out, I booked a cheap ticked from Chendu to KL with AirAsia, printed it off and handed it in as proof that I was leaving the country.

They accepted that and gave me a second visa for another month, but I had to go back to Beijing to pick up my passport after 8 days, and I had a flight that I didn’t really want.

Cost me so much time and effort but it was definitely worth it. If you can get a 3 month visa do everything you can do get it ! It will make life so much easier !