China visitor visa: Application Process, Requirements, Application Fee


The China Visitor visas include tourist visa, transit, non-commerce, and tourist group visa. However, it should be noted that citizens of some countries do not need a visa to stay in China for a short time.

In the following, we will describe the types of China Visitor visas, the application process, requirements, forms, fees to be paid, processing time, and more.

China visitor visa: Application Process

The steps to apply for a China Visitor Visa are:

  • You must first prepare the required documents and submit them to the embassy.
  • Generally, you can not apply for China visas online. Therefore, you must either submit your documents to the embassy or, if there are Chinese Visa Application Centers in your country, submit your documents to this center.
  • If you can not go to the embassy, you can apply through travel agencies, or someone will provide the documents on your behalf. The power of attorney is usually not required.

China Visitor Visa: Requirements

To obtain different types of China visitor visas, you must provide the following documents:


  • Passport: This document must be valid for six months from your arrival date and have at least one unused page. You must also make a copy of the photo page of your passport.
  • Visa application form (Form V.2013)
  • Applicant photo: Photo size should be 33 by 48 mm (size similar to a passport photo). You must attach this photo to your visa application form using glue or staple.
  • Those applying for a transit visa must provide documents such as a ticket to the destination country. It is also necessary to provide a valid visa and residence permit from the destination country.
  • Travel itinerary: You must provide details of your trip. Showing documents such as hotel reservations and return tickets may suffice.
  • Invitation letter: People applying for an L and F visa need an invitation letter. The invitation must include the following:
  • Applicant information such as name, date of birth, and gender
  • Purpose of travel to China, date of arrival, and departure
  • The financial resource to cover expenses
  • Communication between the applicant and the inviting person or entity
  • Information about the inviting person or entity such as name, contact number, address, signature, etc.
  • People who intend to apply for a multiple entry visa must provide a copy of their previous Chinese visa.

In most cases, the China embassy will review your visa application within four working days and decide whether to grant you a visa. You can also shorten the visa processing time by paying the additional cost.

China Visitor Visa: Application Fee

The cost of applying for a China Visitor visa depends on your nationality,  the number of visa entries you have, the country you are applying from, and whether you want an express service.

China Visitor Visa: Types

  • Tourist visa (L): This visa is issued to those who plan to travel to China for leisure, sightseeing, and meeting friends. This visa is issued as multiple entries to citizens of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Argentina and is valid for up to ten years. Holders of this visa can stay in China for up to 60 days per visit. Note that nationals of some countries can stay in China for a limited time without a visa.
  • Non-commerce visa (F): Foreigners invited to China for non-business activities can apply for this visa. Non-business activities include lecturing, conducting cultural and scientific exchanges, and participating in the investigation. The F visa holder can stay in China for up to 30 days upon the arrival. If you need to stay longer, you can enter this in your application form. The consular officer can increase the validity of your visa, depending on your circumstances and needs.
  • Transit visa (G): This permission is issued to those who intend to stay in China for a short period on their way to another country. This visa’s total validity is three months, and the holder is allowed to stay in China for seven to ten days during each stay. Note that citizens of some countries do not need a transit visa to transit in China.
  • Tourist group visa: This visa is issued to tourist groups that include at least five members. This visa is issued as a single entry, in separate sheets, instead of being entered in the individual passport.
  • China private visit visa (S): This visa is provided to family members of foreigners who live in China for work or study, as well as those who wish to visit China for personal reasons such as marriage, litigation, heritage, adoption, or medical treatment.

Let’s sum up…

In the previous sections, we provided information on the process of applying for a Chinese visitor visa, requirements, and costs. On the Visa Library website, you can learn about other types of China visas as well as immigration to other countries.

If you have experience obtaining a China visa, you can share it with us through the comments section. Sharing your experiences will help others make better decisions.

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