visa more than 30 days for China

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lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 6 Nov 2018, 10:58am

hello!

husband (UK citizen) and I (FR citizen), both living in the UK and applying to the Chinese visa center in Edinburgh, are planning to go on a tour in Asia. Ideally, we would like to spend 3 months in China (I have multiple chinese business visas on my passport, husband doesn't)

Has anyone of either citizenship recently received a 3 months tourist visa for China? how did you do it?
So far we are booking flights and hotels for 3 months (that's required, but indeed we are not quite going to use those bookings..), we are trying to show that we will be unable to extend once in china (away from big cities), and we are trying to come up with a full perfect-tourist plan for 3 months (UNESCO places , historical stuff, nothing controversial)

I know it would be easy to get a 30 days visa, and then renew there twice, but we would like to avoid that for a couple of reasons: the Police Bureau offices (for extending visas) are in big cities, and we would like to avoid big cities (we will basically be in the mountains and in the desert, and we intend to stay there as much as possible); there will be overlap time if we extend the visa and therefore, we will end up with less than 3 months total in China (we do need 3 months to cycle the route we want to cycle).
We also considered a business visa, since they are easier to get (no need to book flights and hotels in advance), they are also 30 days, but can only be renewed once, so 60 days total)

many thanks!

Edit: we have spent a fair amount of time on forums for that particular issue: most people extend their visa. Only a Dutch couple, years ago, reported having obtained a 3 mo visa. Also a bunch of people got denied a visa. We are hoping my "good records" in China will avoid us that path!

Eman Resu
Posts: 105
Joined: 4 Aug 2016, 5:04pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby Eman Resu » 6 Nov 2018, 12:21pm

Hi,

In 2017 my son who has a UK passport got a 2 year visa with a 90 day limit on each visit. This is how it was done: I have an Indian passport and at that time (2017) and prior I had university of Sheffield short duration work in Nanjing for several years, obtaining the usual academic visa for China. My son accompanied me in 2017 on my work assignment and he applied on a tourist visa providing an attested statement that a Nanjing university academic (a Chinese national) would put him up. Last year my daughter (UK passport) did the same with a Chinese national vouching for her accommodation. Maybe a Chinese national who you worked with in the past can provide a statement that they'll put you up? Hope this helps.

Regards
Dennis

lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 6 Nov 2018, 12:29pm

Eman Resu wrote:Hi,

In 2017 my son who has a UK passport got a 2 year visa with a 90 day limit on each visit. This is how it was done: I have an Indian passport and at that time (2017) and prior I had university of Sheffield short duration work in Nanjing for several years, obtaining the usual academic visa for China. My son accompanied me in 2017 on my work assignment and he applied on a tourist visa providing an attested statement that a Nanjing university academic (a Chinese national) would put him up. Last year my daughter (UK passport) did the same with a Chinese national vouching for her accommodation. Maybe a Chinese national who you worked with in the past can provide a statement that they'll put you up? Hope this helps.

Regards
Dennis

THank you so much Dennis!
it definitely does help! Yes we know a bunch of chinese nationals! so if I understood well, simply apply with a letter of invitation from a national stating they will host us and make us visit all the great propaganda history stuff, right? wooo that does sound muuuuuch easier than all the booking things we are trying to put together! Can I ask you also where you applied? (in the UK?)

Eman Resu
Posts: 105
Joined: 4 Aug 2016, 5:04pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby Eman Resu » 6 Nov 2018, 12:41pm

Yes, an attested invitation letter from a Chinese national together with photocopies of both sides of their national id card. If memory serves me well this information is somewhere in the CVASC website. We all applied from the CVASC in London. No need for stating the other stuff, but some of the off the beaten track historic sites of recent Chinese history are quite interesting!

simonhill
Posts: 2548
Joined: 13 Jan 2007, 11:28am
Location: Essex

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby simonhill » 6 Nov 2018, 1:32pm

Bit of a long one, but I know an American cyclist who got a long visa, 6 months I think.You may want to have a look at US Chinese visa sites to see if there is anything that could help. (When China US got friendly, they had very good visa arrangements - no such luck with UK. Its all reciprocal and as ever the UK never wants to get very 'friendly' so we struggle with visas.)

I have done the one month and renew thing twice now. You are right, I lost nearly a week on the renewal process, plus being stuck in a town that deserved a couple of days at most.

Good luck.

lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 6 Nov 2018, 1:42pm

Thank you so much both
I thought that the invite from national would be actually more tricky, but it seems it is the way to go! thanks a lot again!

lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 6 Nov 2018, 1:49pm

Eman Resu wrote:Yes, an attested invitation letter from a Chinese national together with photocopies of both sides of their national id card. If memory serves me well this information is somewhere in the CVASC website. We all applied from the CVASC in London. No need for stating the other stuff, but some of the off the beaten track historic sites of recent Chinese history are quite interesting!


Any particular one? we intend to go through yunnan, sichuan, qinghai and xinjiang... have you been there?

lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 6 Nov 2018, 1:50pm

simonhill wrote:Bit of a long one, but I know an American cyclist who got a long visa, 6 months I think.You may want to have a look at US Chinese visa sites to see if there is anything that could help. (When China US got friendly, they had very good visa arrangements - no such luck with UK. Its all reciprocal and as ever the UK never wants to get very 'friendly' so we struggle with visas.)

I have done the one month and renew thing twice now. You are right, I lost nearly a week on the renewal process, plus being stuck in a town that deserved a couple of days at most.

Good luck.


can I ask you where you went in China? anything in particular (place, food, anything) you would recommend?

Ant...
Posts: 44
Joined: 26 Jan 2018, 4:35pm
Location: Denbighshire

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby Ant... » 6 Nov 2018, 2:02pm

Have a look at https://www.crazyguyonabike.com Loads of blogs on there for China.

Eman Resu
Posts: 105
Joined: 4 Aug 2016, 5:04pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby Eman Resu » 6 Nov 2018, 6:03pm

lvabd wrote:
Eman Resu wrote:Yes, an attested invitation letter from a Chinese national together with photocopies of both sides of their national id card. If memory serves me well this information is somewhere in the CVASC website. We all applied from the CVASC in London. No need for stating the other stuff, but some of the off the beaten track historic sites of recent Chinese history are quite interesting!


Any particular one? we intend to go through yunnan, sichuan, qinghai and xinjiang... have you been there?


Alas I've not been to those regions. My time in China restricted to Wuxi, Nanjing and an interesting tour to Xian with a group of Chinese people. Best to ask your Chinese contacts about off the beaten tracks places of interest in those regions.

simonhill
Posts: 2548
Joined: 13 Jan 2007, 11:28am
Location: Essex

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby simonhill » 6 Nov 2018, 6:10pm

You asked where I went.

First trip: I flew into Guilin, then cycled through the minorities areas to Kali. Train to Kunming and on to New Dali. Cycled to Old Dali and on to Lijiang. Then cycled down to Jinhong. Toured around area and to Burma border. Then boat down Mekong to Thailand. Renewed visa in Old Dali.

Second trip: Flew to Hainan Island - toured there. Ferry to mainland on to Nanning. Train to Baise. Cycled to Lao border at Mengla. Renewed visa in Baise.

These trips were 2009 and 2010 and I got my visas very easily and cheaply via an agent in Bangkok - not possible now. The renewal in Dali should have been easy, but my hotel failed to register me correctly on the Govt database, so I had to make a few trips to the Immigration Office. Still only took a couple of days. Lots of tourists do it in Dali, so it was pretty easy.

In Baise, they played it by the rules. Five working days, had to show proof of US$100 per day, etc. Persuaded them to do it in 4 working days, but there was a weekend in the middle.

Not sure if its changed, but the renewal offices are in the equivalent of county towns, not necessarily the biggest town in the region. Check which is correct before heading off.

I loved cycling in Yunnan. Plenty of minority people, not so (Han) Chinese out of the big towns. Lots of big hills, one went on for 42 kms. Also marvelled at the roadside markers that had the road distance from start or end - often running into multi thousands of Kms that's what I call a road.

I'm sure you have been looking at the Lonely Planet China thorn tree - they are usually pretty good on up to date info.

Interested to know if Edinburgh visa applications still get different status to London. As you probably know, fee for UK citizen much higher than other EU countries. Way back when I was going, the rate for Brits applying in Scotland (you had to live there) was the lower rate, because the consulate there didn't apply the higher England rate (ie they didn't realise Scotland, like England were both part of the UK).

lvabd
Posts: 39
Joined: 3 Mar 2018, 4:44pm

Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby lvabd » 7 Nov 2018, 10:06am

simonhill wrote:You asked where I went.

First trip: I flew into Guilin, then cycled through the minorities areas to Kali. Train to Kunming and on to New Dali. Cycled to Old Dali and on to Lijiang. Then cycled down to Jinhong. Toured around area and to Burma border. Then boat down Mekong to Thailand. Renewed visa in Old Dali.

Second trip: Flew to Hainan Island - toured there. Ferry to mainland on to Nanning. Train to Baise. Cycled to Lao border at Mengla. Renewed visa in Baise.

These trips were 2009 and 2010 and I got my visas very easily and cheaply via an agent in Bangkok - not possible now. The renewal in Dali should have been easy, but my hotel failed to register me correctly on the Govt database, so I had to make a few trips to the Immigration Office. Still only took a couple of days. Lots of tourists do it in Dali, so it was pretty easy.

In Baise, they played it by the rules. Five working days, had to show proof of US$100 per day, etc. Persuaded them to do it in 4 working days, but there was a weekend in the middle.

Not sure if its changed, but the renewal offices are in the equivalent of county towns, not necessarily the biggest town in the region. Check which is correct before heading off.

I loved cycling in Yunnan. Plenty of minority people, not so (Han) Chinese out of the big towns. Lots of big hills, one went on for 42 kms. Also marvelled at the roadside markers that had the road distance from start or end - often running into multi thousands of Kms that's what I call a road.

I'm sure you have been looking at the Lonely Planet China thorn tree - they are usually pretty good on up to date info.

Interested to know if Edinburgh visa applications still get different status to London. As you probably know, fee for UK citizen much higher than other EU countries. Way back when I was going, the rate for Brits applying in Scotland (you had to live there) was the lower rate, because the consulate there didn't apply the higher England rate (ie they didn't realise Scotland, like England were both part of the UK).


amazing info again, thanks a lot!

that definitely makes me want even more to avoid the extension faff. As far as I understood even just one night in an accredited hotel is fine to get the slip for the extension, but still. what a mess.

Yunnan does sound amazing: our idea is to cross the border from Vietnam, and then stay quite close to the Tibet border (no no no we won't try crossing it), as much as possible in the mountains, up to Sichuan, and then crossing the Taklamakan and then the Tajik border (Pamir HW indeed)
Heard from lots of Chinese friends that we should expect amazing food in Yunan and Sichuan.

Visa is so annoying though, that I don't want to get overexcited by the trip before we have the visa on our passport.

again, thanks a lot!

pq
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Re: visa more than 30 days for China

Postby pq » 7 Nov 2018, 12:52pm

I am extremely out of date with this, but I got a 3 month Chinese visa in Hong Kong via a travel agent who specialised in such things - using his contacts, and I imagine backhanders. At that time it was the only way to get one, and it meant that although I wanted to visit the few west of China, I had to go there via Hong Kong to get the visa. It might be worth your while exploring whether there are similar options available now.

For most tourists back then a 1 month visa was fine because it was easily extended. Is that still the case? My problem was that I was visiting sensitive areas (Tibet and Xinjiang) where extensions were not granted.

Good luck.
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