Transit Visa Exemptions in China: 24 Hour, 72 Hour, and 144 Hour Options

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By Dezan Shira & Associates

China Visas

Foreign travelers transiting through China have several options for transit visa exemptions. These transit visa exemptions allow eligible foreign travelers a visa free visit for 24, 72, or 144 hours.

Although requirements for each transit visa exemption are different, each transit visa exemption stipulates that foreign travelers are only eligible when traveling through China between two different countries. Further, onward travel must occur within 24, 72, or 144 hours of arrival.

To obtain a transit visa exemption, travelers should review eligibility requirements, and confirm their eligibility with their local Chinese embassy. After confirmation, travelers must communicate their intention to obtain a transit visa exemption to their airline prior to travel. The airline will liaise with border control officials, who grant transit visa exemptions to travelers that meet requirements after verification.

In most cases, the transit visa exemption only allows the traveler to visit the province of their arrival. However, travelers entering China via Shanghai, Hangzhou, and Nanjing can travel within Shanghai, Zhejiang province, and Jiangsu province, and travelers entering via Beijing, Tianjin, Shijiazhuang, and Qinhuangdao can travel within the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.

The 24 hour Transit Visa Exemption

Foreign travelers transiting through China within 24 hours to reach another country of destination may be eligible for a 24 hour Transit Visa Exemption. This visa exemption is available to all foreigners, and most ports of entry in China.

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The 72 hour Transit Visa Exemption

Foreign travelers transiting through China within 72 hours to reach another country of destination may be eligible for the 72 hour Transit Visa Exemption. This visa exemption is only available to citizens of participating countries traveling through participating ports of entry in China.

To obtain this visa exemption, the foreign national must have a valid passport from one of the 53 countries, which includes:

  • 24 Schengen countries in Europe (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland);
  • 15 other European countries (Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Macedonia, Monaco, Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, UK, and Ukraine);
  • Six countries in North and South America (Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Mexico, and US);
  • Two Oceanic countries (Australia and New Zealand); and
  • Six Asian countries (Brunei, Japan, Qatar, Singapore, South Korea, and UAE).

Further, eligible travelers must be transiting through one of the following 19 cities: Beijing, Changsha, Chengdu, Chongqing, Dalian, Guangzhou, Guilin, Hangzhou, Harbin, Kunming, Nanjing, Qingdao, Shanghai, Shenyang, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Wuhan, Xiamen, or Xi’an.

Notably, authorities continue to expand the list of cities where 72 hour Transit Visa Exemptions are applicable.

The 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption

Foreign travelers transiting through China within 144 hours to reach another country of destination may be eligible for the 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption. This visa exemption is available to citizens of countries that are eligible for the 72 hour Transit Visa Exemption; however, the number of participating cities is more limited.

To obtain this visa exemption, the foreign national must have a valid passport from one of the 53 countries that are eligible for the 72 hour Transit Visa Exemption. The 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption was first introduced to three cities in East China’s Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang area: Hangzhou, Shanghai, and Nanjing. As of December 28, 2017, the exemption was expanded to North China’s Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, namely: Beijing, Shijiazhuang, Tianjin, and Qinhuangdao.

Authorities have announced that the visa exemption will be expanded to South China’s Guangdong province, in the cities of Guangzhou, Jieyang, and Shenzhen.

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Hainan Visa Exemption

Since May 1, 2018, visitors from 59 eligible countries can travel to South China’s Hainan province visa-free for up to 30 days.

Unlike other visa exemptions in China, visitors to Hainan enjoying visa-free access do not need to be traveling to a third country. However, they must book their visits via travel agencies registered in Hainan and approved by China’s National Tourism Administration.

To be eligible for visa-free travel to Hainan, visitors must hold a valid passport from one of the following countries:

  • 25 Schengen countries in Europe (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland);
  • 15 other European countries (Albania, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Macedonia [FYROM], Monaco, Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, the United Kingdom, Ukraine;
  • Six countries in North and South America (Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Mexico, the United States);
  • Two Oceanic countries (Australia and New Zealand); and
  • 11 countries in Asia and the Middle East (Brunei, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Philippines, Qatar, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand,  and United Arab Emirates).

Confirm eligibility before departure

Travelers planning on visiting China with a visa exemption are advised to confirm their eligibility with the relevant port of entry in China or their local Chinese embassy/consulate before departure. The nature of the traveler’s itinerary and other factors may influence eligibility to qualify for a visa exemption.

Prospective travelers may also use a tool released by China’s State Council to determine their eligibility for a visa exemption based on their nationality and port of entry. The tool can be accessed here.

This article was originally published on September 6, 2017 and has been updated with the latest regulatory changes.


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China Briefing is produced by Dezan Shira & Associates. The firm assists foreign investors throughout Asia and maintains offices in China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, SingaporeRussia, and Vietnam. Please contact info@dezshira.com or visit our website at www.dezshira.com.

106 thoughts on “Transit Visa Exemptions in China: 24 Hour, 72 Hour, and 144 Hour Options

    Iamhere says:

    I have a few comments regarding this article:

    1. By referring to it as a “visa exemption” then you are inferring that there is no visa that is required, but it is rather a visa on arrival.

    2. Passengers arriving in one area may not leave that area for the duration of the time. So, if you arrive in Beijing then you can’t leave the Beijing city with that visa. There is an exception in some areas for a greater area allowed.

    3. Passengers must show a ticket for an on going destination in the same direction of travel, so for example Los Angeles –> Beijing –> Los Angeles would not work because the continuing destination is not westward.

    China Briefing says:

    Thanks for taking the time to read our article. Now, let’s dig-in:

    In response to your first question, the transit visa exemption is a very much a visa exemption. You receive an exemption for a visa that you would normally need to have. We are splitting hairs here, but it’s slightly different from visa free travel, and it’s the language used by authorities in the country.

    In response to your second question, each region has its own stipulations – some regions restrict movement within the region itself. Any restriction will have the greatest effect on travelers who obtained a 72- or 144-hour exemption and want to fly on to another city (which won’t be allowed).

    In response to your third question, the direction of the flight is not as important as the destination – you can’t get a visa exemption with a return ticket. To obtain a visa exemption, you need to be flying through China in transit to another country: from the US through China to India, for example.

    We hope this is helpful, but please feel free to reach out to our visa experts here: http://www.dezshira.com/services/payroll-human-resource-administration

    torrent56 says:

    It’s good to see an article explaining something that could confuse people a lot. However,

    1. I don’t think the 144-hour Guangdong province transit policy has been implemented yet. At the moment it’s still only the 72-hour visa transit policy.

    2. Citizens from Japan, Singapore, Brunei and Serbia actually wouldn’t benefit from this policy because they can already travel to China visa free for either 15 or 30 days.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello, and thanks for taking the time to write – we are happy to know this topic interests you.

    Thanks for raising the issue regarding Guangdong province-wide implementation. To date, we understand the 144-hour exemption is only available in two cities within Guangdong: Guangzhou and Shenzhen. As it’s a new option, we suspect that this exemption will remain limited to a small number of cities over the next year before any further expansion.

    And you are right — international travelers transiting through China should first check whether or not they are eligible for visa free travel. If Chinese authorities have granted citizens of your country permission for visa free travel, there is little need to exempt yourself from a visa in the first place. In either case, it’s always best to check with your local Chinese embassy before travel.

    Thanks again for your feedback.

    torrent56 says:

    Hi,
    Thanks for your reply! From what I know though in Guangdong province right now the only airport that allows visa-free transit for 72 hours is Guangzhou Airport which was implemented years ago now. Shenzhen Airport and the other airports haven’t implemented the policy yet.

    Katie says:

    Hi – I am planning to fly from London – Shanghai and use the 144 hour exemption as I will fly on to Japan. I will then fly from Japan back to Shanghai to spend 1 night and take the return flight to London, leaving the airport to go to my parents place in Shanghai and then re-checking my bags in, using the 24 hour exemption. Would there be any issue using two exemptions within a 2 week period? Thanks in advance!

    Eric says:

    Hello,

    I do have a specific question on the 144 hours Exemption Visa.
    I will be travelling from Japan to Shanghai by a cruise. I will arrive on a Friday morning and will depart on Monday evening with a Flight to Paris.
    As a French citizen, I believe I am eligible for the 144 hours Exemption Visa however, I would like to confirm this with you. I believe the port of entry and departure are in the list of Shanghai approved ones.

    Can you confirm that I do not need a visa in such situation?

    Thanks in advance,
    Eric

    Michael Blackwood says:

    Hello,
    I see from your article that……. as of December 28, 2017, the 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption should by now have been extended to North China’s Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, namely: Beijing, Shijiazhuang, Tianjin, and Qinhuangdao.
    Does this mean that when I arrive in Tianjin by Cruise Ship; I will be able to leave the ship to go on tours in Beijing area by obtaining a 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption at the port ?

    We are in port for 60 hours, before the ship leaves for South Korea. I think this makes us eligible as UK passport holders, but I cannot get the cruise company to recognise this recent change.
    Do you know if it is possible to get the 144 hour Transit Visa Exemption at Tianjin Cruise Terminal ?

    I hope you can help by clarifying this as It would mean we wouldn’t need to apply for full tourist visas just to visit Beijing.
    Thank you
    Mike

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Michael,

    The 144 hour visa exemption should apply at the cruise port. However, we recommend contacting your cruise line, local Chinese consulate, or the visa office of the Tianjin port to confirm your eligibility. Please contact our HR specialists for more information: http://www.dezshira.com/services/payroll-human-resource-administration

    Thomas Spriggs says:

    Thank you for your information. We intend to travel from Guam-Philippines-Beijing-Philippines-Guam under the 144-hr TWOV program. 1) Will this travel itinerary work? 2) Can we travel within the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region under this program? 3) If yes, can a minor with less than 1 year before expiration on passport (11 months) travel in this program? The regular tourist visa requires >1 year left in passport.

    Allan says:

    We are here now at Shanghai Intl Airpor for a 12 hr layover between Manila and Los Angeles. We were not allowed to go outside the airport to tour. We were not able to avail the 24-hr transit visa. Immigration told us that beginning Feb 1, 2018, they are not allowing foreigners to go out the city on a transit visa.

    China Briefing says:

    Thank you for sharing your experience; we are certainly interested to find out more about what is happening with the 24-hour transit visa program. If the change you describe becomes a regular feature, it will only increase the importance of the transit visa exemption program.

    kristine says:

    I am a US resident with Philippine passport, We are traveling to the Philippines this March and we have a 24 hr lay over in China. Are we allowed to go out of the airport (Pudong) and stay ina hotel in Shanghai? Your response is greatly appreciated.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Kristine,

    Thank you for your inquiry. Eligibility for visa exemptions in China depends on your passport, not your residency. We recommend that you contact Pudong airport to confirm whether you are eligible for a visa exemption.

    Jennifer says:

    Hi,

    I hold a Canadian passport and will be flying from Canada to Shanghai in April 2018 and staying for 3 days in Shanghai then going on a cruise from Shanghai port to Japan. I will return back to Shanghai 7 days later and then flying out from Shanghai to Canada.

    Please confirm if the 144 hours visa exception applies in both situations.

    Thank you in advance!

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Jennifer,

    As a Canadian passport holder, you should qualify for a visa exemption when traveling to Shanghai by air. However, you should contact the relevant port that your cruise ship is entering and exiting from to confirm that it is eligible to process visa exemptions.

    WILSON D. says:

    I am a canadian passport holder at pudong airport had a 20hrs layover immigration did not allow us to go out of the terminal they said we need visa. They said if you stay 2 nights in china they will give you visa.

    Jane says:

    Hello!

    My husband and I are Canadian citizens. We will be traveling from Vancouver to Beijing, hope to spend one night, then fly onward to Ulanbaator, Mongolia. On the way back from Ulanbaatar Mongolia, about 3 weeks later, we would like to get the 144 hour visa exception to stay in Beijing before flying home to Vancouver. Will there be any problem using the visa exception twice in one month?

    Thanks,
    Jane

    Wyu says:

    Hi,

    We’re planning a trip to North Korea and the only way to do this is for us to pass through Beijing. Our itinerary will be: Amsterdam – Beijing – Pyongyang – Beijing – Amsterdam. We will be staying in Beijing twice on 2 separate occasions of no more than 48 hours per stay within a week. Will the 144 hour maximum reset after we go through customs and onwards to Pyongyang? So will we have another 144 hours when we arrive back in Beijing from Pyongyang? Our 2 stays combined will be more than 144 hours if it does not.

    Thanks!

    Wyu

    Paul says:

    HI I am a Canadian passport holder travelling to Mongolia via Beijing
    in May 2018. I have purchased a return ticket Vancouver-Beijing-Vanouver
    and a separate Beijing-Ulaan Baator-Beijing return ticket. I will be 1 month in Mongolia.

    I plan to spend 1 night in Beijing en route to Mongolia, and up to 144 hours in Beijing en route returning to Vancouver. Am I eligible for transit exemption both ways?

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Wyu,

    Assuming that you are using a Dutch passport, you should be eligible for two 72 hour transit visa exemptions. We recommend that you contact your airline, tour group, or the Beijing airport to confirm your eligibility first.

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Jane,

    You and your husband should be eligible for a 24 or 72 hour visa exemption, followed by a 144 hour visa exemption. However, we recommend that you contact your airline or the Beijing airport to confirm your eligibility first.

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Paul,

    You should qualify for either a 24 hour or 72 hour visa exemption on your first trip, and then a 144 hour visa exemption on your second.

    To qualify for the visa exemption, you must prove that you are en route to a third country. When arriving from Vancouver, you should bring proof of your plans to transit to Ulaan Baator. Likewise, you must show evidence of your next trip to Vancouver upon your return to Beijing.

    We recommend that you contact your airline or the Beijing airport to confirm your eligibility.

    Jon says:

    Has there been any recent changes to the laws for the 24 hour visa exemption? My wife and I recently had a 12 hour layover in Shanghai going from Cambodia through Shanghai to Honolulu. We filled out the form required but were turned away by China’s Customs officer. She said since our connecting flight was the same day as our arrival, we were not permitted to enter China using the 24 hour visa exemption. We had made several reservations in Shanghai to go site seeing and try some restaurants. Is there something political that has made China’s Customs discriminate against Americans? We talked to other passengers on our flight and no one that was from America was allowed in on the 24 hour visa exemption, however many others who had a different countries’ passport were allowed in. Since it was a hazardous air quality day in Shanghai, it’s probably for the best we didn’t visit, but I’m just wondering if there were any laws that recently would prevent us from using the 24 hour visa exemption? Thanks!

    Navaraj koirala says:

    With Canadian passport,In June I am flying from Vancouver to Kathmandu with 15 hours stoppage in Shangai,then kunming(10 hours layover) to Kathmandu.Do I get a visa exempt to go and visit Shangai and kunming.

    Tina says:

    Hello

    My husband and I are Iranian citizens.We are traveling from Tehran to the Tokyo this May and we have a 9 hour lay over in Beijing. Are we eligible for 24-hour transit visa to get the boarding pass for our second flight to Tokyo? bit confused because some says 24 hours transit visa is available for all foreigners who hold tickets to a third country and have booked seats on international airlines, ships, trains no matter of their passport. I know our passport is not eligible for 24 hr transit visa in some airport in China but not sure if it is the case in Beijing. Unfortunately China embassy in Tehran are not very help full on this matter. Your help much appreciated. Thanks!

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Tina,

    If you are not leaving the airport, you are eligible to stay for 24 hours to connect your flight. You will not be able to leave the airport, however. To confirm your status, we recommend that you contact your airline.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Jon,

    Travelers who would like to leave the airport usually apply for a 72 hour or 144 hour visa exemption. The officials may have considered the layover too brief to grant such an exemption. We recommend contacting the relevant port of entry prior to arrival to confirm eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Navaraj,

    Because you are traveling to two Chinese regions before transiting to the third country, it is possible that you will not be granted a 72 hour or 144 hour visa exemption. The visa exemption only allows you to travel in the region of your port of entry. We recommend that you contact your local Chinese embassy or consulate for more information.

    Sabrinalal says:

    Hi my parents r travelling to Tianjin on a cruise Ship n staying for one night in Beijing n catch the flight back. Bacelona the cruise company tell us that we don’t need a visa could u please email us back because we r leaving tomorrow to catch our cruises.

    Bailey says:

    So I am a US citizen and I am flying to Shanghai (staying ~96 hours), then traveling to Tokyo and Chiang Mai Thailand for 2 weeks, then flying back to Shanghai to connect to a flight back to the US. Am I able to apply for a 144 hour TWOV for my first trip, and then 24 hour TWOV for when I come back for my flight to the US?

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    We recommend that you contact the port of entry in Tianjin to confirm whether the port can grant a visa that would allow your parents to travel to Beijing on a visa exemption.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Bailey,

    The scenario you outlined should be feasible. For the 24 hour exemption on your return, however, you might not be able to leave the airport, unless you are able to get a 72 hour or 144 hour exemption. We recommend that you check with the airport or the entry-exit bureau for confirmation.

    Maurice Woodward says:

    My wife and I are British Passport Holders,and flying to Guangzhou in December 2018, from Taipei with onward flight to Christchurch. We want to stay in Guangzhou on a visa free exemption but I cannot establish whether or not the 144 hour has come into force or it is still 72 hours. Please advise.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Maurice,

    From our understanding, the 144 hour visa exemption will be announced for Guangzhou but has not been implemented yet. However, by December 2018 it could be. We recommend that you contact the Guangzhou airport or entry-exit authorities closer to your travel date for confirmation.

    Wilmar says:

    I have 2 questions:

    1. Are you able to use the 144 hour visa exemption if you are flying with multiple carriers? For example, flying from Manila to Shanghai, staying for 4 days and then departing to Canada with another air carrier.

    2. Do the flights need to be booked as a multi-city flight to use the 144 hour visa, or can you book multiple 1 way tickets? Example: one way ticket from Manila to Shanghai and then another one way ticket from Shanghai to Canada.

    Hamzao says:

    Hello I am considering flying Stockholm-Paris-Shanghai-amsterdam-Stockholm ( I will only be connecting in Paris and amsterdam)

    and i just contacted the immigration in shanghai and they told me that they only count the last flight for me that would be the Paris-shanghai and Shanghai-Amsterdam flight, for example i can fly Stockholm-Paris-Shanghai but not the same route back on the return flight i must fly to another country/City like Shanghai-Amsterdam-Stockholm?!

    My final route would be as i mentioned above including the connecting flights in Paris and Amsterdam

    Stockholm-Paris-Shanghai-Amsterdam-Stockholm

    Do you guys think this is the right way and am i entitled to the 144-hour visa if i fly this routes? just double checking with you guys?!

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Wilmar,

    For both of these issues, having proof of travel to your next destination should be sufficient to qualify for the exemption. However, we still recommend that you confirm with the airport before you travel.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Hamzao,

    Your proposed itinerary sounds like it should work. However, we recommend that you speak with immigration once more to reconfirm before your trip.

    Maria says:

    I’m an american citizen and I will be traveling in June from Toronto to Beijing 3 days and then leave to Hong kong and then back to toronto. will I be able to use the 144 hr transit visa, what documents do I need to give Airline in Canada?

    Peter Thomson says:

    I am travelling by air from Australia to Shanghai for a 4 night sightseeing tour before boarding a 22 night Princess cruise back to Australia. The first port after departing China is Busan Sth Korea. On arrival I would like to apply for a 144hr transit free visa. I will have all the necessary documentation ie: valid Australian passport, proof of accommodation and boarding passes for the cruise. Is there any problem to be expected? Thank you

    Bas says:

    Would it be possible to fly from Amsterdam to Shanghai, stay 144 hours and fly back to Brussels, Belgium?

    Bas says:

    Would it be possible to fly Brussels- Shanghai, stay 144 hrs, fly back to Amsterdam?

    Lorin says:

    Hello,

    I have a roundtrip from Orlando-Newark-Beijing-Shanghai and then have a flight booked to Manila from Shanghai. Will this be eligible?

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Maria,

    You should present your airline as well as the Beijing airport with proof of your travel to a third destination. We recommend that you contact the Beijing airport before your trip to confirm your eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Peter,

    Your itinerary sounds valid for the 144 hour visa. However, we recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport to confirm your eligibility and ensure that you don’t encounter any unexpected problems.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Bas,

    If you have proof of travel to a third country, you should be eligible for the 144 hour exemption. However, we recommend that you contact that Shanghai airport to confirm your eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Lorin,

    The visa exemption generally only allows you to travel in the region of your port of entry. Because you are going to both Beijing and Shanghai, you may encounter difficulties. We recommend contacting both of the ports of entry to confirm your eligibility and consider your options.

    Anna says:

    Hello,
    Is there any limit for how many times I can use 144 hour visa examption in a period of time?

    I already applied once 144 hour free visa in march, and would like to travel again.

    I have meetings planned like this travelling by air:
    Home – Shanghai 4 days – Korea 2 days – Shanghai 2 days – HongKong – Home
    So it will be two times entering China, but both of them will be less than 144 hours.
    Do you think it could work?

    Thank you in advance!
    Kind regards,
    Anna

    Mark says:

    Hello,

    I am an American citizen and passport holder residing in Italy with an upcoming planned trip this August from Milan-Beijing-Tokyo, and then 2.5 weeks later from Tokyo-Shanghai-Milan, planning on using either the 72 or 144hr visa-free transit travel as my option each way. I have three questions:

    1) I possess an Italian residency permit which expire annually in August each year, whereupon I submit the renewal application and fee and await the new permit card which is given in November. While waiting for the card, I am given a receipt with all the identification numbers as a sort of ‘stand-in’ for the permit card itself. Will this cause a problem? Could I just travel without bringing up the residency in Italy given that my passport is American?

    2) I often layover for 24hrs when going to and from the USA/Italy, meaning I have several Turkish stamps in my passport. Is this something which will raise eyebrows and/or result in denial of visa-free-transit permission? I have heard rumors of some people being denied entry due to Turkish stamps in their passport, so I am just checking.

    3) I have an expired Italian visa issued in the United States in my passport for ‘motivi religiosi (religious motives)’ due to work with a non-profit. Will this cause problems in the eyes of the customs officials?

    Thanks in advance for any further clarity,
    Mark

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Anna,

    Your itinerary sounds valid for the exemption. However, we recommend that you confirm with the Shanghai airport to confirm your eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Mark,

    Thank you for your inquiry. Please contact our HR specialists for more information on your situation: http://www.dezshira.com/services/payroll-human-resource-administration

    Rob says:

    Hello

    I am an Australian citizen and will be arriving at Beijing Capital Airport via overnight transit in Singapore. I will be sightseeing within the Beijing area for 3 nights and then leaving on a cruise out of Tianjin back to Singapore. The first country on the cruise is Japan. I understand it is only the last country before arriving and the first after leaving, that is considered by Immigration when granting the 144 hr Transit Visa.

    As such, just double checking that my itinerary would be acceptable for the 144hr Transit Visa?

    Thanks.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Rob,

    The Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region is integrating in terms of visa-free travel, but it’s possible that you may not be able to enjoy this benefit everywhere in the region at the moment. We recommend that you confirm with the Beijing airport that you will be able to leave via Tianjin on the visa exemption. You will also need to present proof of your travel plans to Japan.

    Steve rodhouse says:

    Hi. Could you help me ? I am flying from the U.K. to Beijing in August, staying for 4 days and then flying on to Hanoi. I am a UK fullnpassport holder. My flight to Hanoi changes planes in Guangzhou but as the stop is only for 1 hour then I will not be leaving the airport or going through immigration checks . Am I still eligible for the visa free 144 hour transit or with the stopin Guangzhou disqualify me ? Thank you

    Toni says:

    HI

    I am a spanish citizen planning the following route:

    UK-Beijing (4-5days) – HKong (2 days) – Thailand – UK

    Does this itinerary apply to the 144 transit visa?

    Thanks in advance

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Steve,

    If you go through exit customs when leaving Beijing and directly transfer flights in Guangzhou, you should be eligible for the visa exemption. However, we strongly recommend that you contact the Beijing airport before your trip to confirm your eligibility.

    Karine Ficagna says:

    Hi, my family and I are flying Thailand-china(Beijing)-UK.
    And we would be staying 4 days in Beijing. Are we entitled to 144h transit visa?’
    Should we apply for this visa prior our trip or we apply at the airport in Beijing (PEK) when we arrive?
    Tks Karine

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Toni,

    If you are staying in Beijing for 144 hours or less, you should be eligible for the exemption with that itinerary. We recommend that you confirm with the Beijing airport prior to your travels.

    Tanti Mei says:

    Hi, need advice.
    I’m holding Indonesian passport.
    I will fly from Jakarta to Paris through Shanghai Pudong Airport on June 13.
    Jakarta Shanghai by Garuda Indonesia
    Shanghai-Paris by KLM (operated by Air France.
    My flight ticket is in the one booking number.

    I will be landed in Pudong terminal 2 at 7am. And in the same day, I need to move to Pudong terminal 1 to catch my flight to Paris.
    Total transit time is only 3 hours.
    Little bit tight. Due to I need to through immigration and go to terminal 1 (walk from terminal 2 to terminal 1 will approx 20 minutes, I think)
    I don’t have checked baggage, so can save time little bit.

    Do I eligible for 24 hours TWOV?
    Do you think 3 hours is enough for transit in Shanghai?

    Thank you so much.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Karine,

    If you hold a passport from one of the countries included in the scheme, that itinerary should qualify for the transit visa exemption. You will have to present proof of travel to the third destination upon your arrival. You apply for the visa exemption when you arrive at the airport, but we recommend you contact the airport in advance in ensure your eligibility.

    Chelsi Crawford says:

    Hi there,

    I am looking to travel London – Beijing – Seoul – London in October this year.

    Are you able to advise if the 144hr visa would work for this trip? I have a British passport.

    Kind regards,

    Chelsi

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    Indonesia is not one of the countries listed as eligible for a transit exemption. However, you may be eligible for a transfer, as explained here: http://www.shanghaiairport.com/en/cjzn/index_225640021.html

    We recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport to confirm whether you will be able to transfer flights in your situation.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Chelsi,

    Yes, your proposed trip should qualify for a 144 hour visa exemption. However, we recommend that you contact the Beijing airport to confirm your eligibility.

    Velvet says:

    Hello,

    I have a US Passport and my flight is on Tuesday at 12:40 am to land in Beijing Wednesday at 4:30 am and then to Seoul Thursday at 11 am. Am I eligiable for a transit visa? Thank you for your help!

    Noli says:

    Hello,

    My whole family has an expired PR card here in Canada and the application for our citizenship is on process. We have a Philippine passport and is planning to visit Philippines 30th of June 2018. We will be having a 26 hours layover in Shanghai. Can we stay in the airport without any china visa? Actually our airline has 1 day free tour with hotel accommodation. Can we go out of the airport without visa? Thank you and I will wait for your reply.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    Yes, if you are traveling to a third location, you should be eligible for the visa exemption. However, we recommend that you contact the Beijing airport to confirm.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Noli,

    The travel document that is needed for a visa exemption is the passport. Unfortunately, the Philippines is not one of the eligible countries for a visa exemption. Because the layover is also longer than 24 hours, you may not be able to stay in the airport for that period of time. We recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport for further clarification.

    Olena Rubel says:

    Hello China Briefing, I am a Ukrainian national.
    I was flying from Istanbul,Turkey to Macau with a connected flight through Shanghai. In shanghai they said that I broke the transit visa rules and they sent me back to Istanbul. I have an official residence permit in Turkey which I provided. I was invited with my esports team for a tournament IN Macau and I provided both invitation and round trip tickets. We were a total of 4 people :2 Turkish nationals and 2 Ukrainian citizens. Only I got my visa denied. I know that as a rule of 144 hours I am eligible plus we were to get a Macau visa upon arrival (as we researched before coming to China).the other Ukrainian national was admitted. As for me-they didn’t let me fly to Macau and sent me back to Istanbul with the first possible flight. Then I got a paper saying not fit to Chinese transit rules . Can you please be specific and explain me if there is anything wrong or what I missed. Thank you!

    Shiny says:

    Hi, we are travelling to canada this coming december, 2 canada passport holder and 3 philippine passport holder. we have 16hrs layover in shanghai airport, can we tour for our 16hrs layover? or we should just stay inside the airport? TIA

    Olena Rubel says:

    It is quite a long time that my request is awaiting moderation, isn’t it? The admins usually reply within 1-2 days….hmmmmmm

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Olena,

    From the information you provided, it sounds like you would qualify for a transit visa exemption, given that Ukraine is one of the qualified countries and that you were traveling to a third destination. We recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport or your nearest Chinese consulate or embassy for clarification on your case.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    The Canadian passport holders should be eligible for the visa exemption, but not the Filipino passport holders. Because the layover is less than 24 hours, they should be allowed to stay inside the airport. We recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport in advance of your arrival to confirm eligibility on both aspects.

    Lori Jiang says:

    Can I use the 144 hours transit visa exemption two times? I am a US citizen. My plan is US to Shanghai and stay in Hangzhou for 6 days. Then leave Hangzhou to Japan for two weeks. Then Come back from Japan to Hangzhou for another six days . Then leave Shanghai to US. Will this work? Thanks!

    Anne says:

    Hi,
    I have a 22hr layover in Guangzhou on my way to Sri Lankan from Canada and I hold a Sri Lankan passport (Canadian PR). Do I need a transit Visa? and can I to go out of the airport to go explore the city till I catch the connecting flight?

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Lori,

    The transit visa exemption normally only allows the holder to travel in the city or region of the port of entry. Therefore, you might not be able to travel to Hangzhou on a visa exemption acquired in Shanghai. We recommend that you contact the Shanghai airport in advance of your trip to confirm your eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Anne,

    It is your passport that determines your eligibility for a transit visa. Unfortunately, Sri Lanka is not one of the countries eligible for a transit exemption. Because your connection is less than 24 hours, however, you should be able to stay in the airport while waiting for your connection. We recommend contacting the Guangzhou airport in advance of your travels to confirm your status.

    Jessika Duggal says:

    Hi there

    Thanks for clarifying this on your website, super helpful.

    I am due to visit a few friends in Asia in September:

    So, I am flying out to Seoul from London first for six days (with a 2 hour stopover in Hong Kong) and then travel to Shanghai for six days before returning to London (with another 2 hour stopover in Hong Kong).

    So technically it’s Seoul > Shanghai > Hong Kong

    I arrive at 1:30pm on Tuesday 18 September in Shanghai and leave at 9:40am on Monday 24 September.

    Would this work? Slightly worried with timings if I dont get entry permit hoping to get one on arrival and I dont qualify.

    What do I need to show to get one? I am staying with friends in Shanghai so wont have a hotel booking.

    Thanks – any help much appreciated!

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Jessika,

    Thank you for reading our article. Assuming that your passport is from an eligible country, your proposed itinerary should qualify for a 144 hour visa exemption.

    If you receive the exemption, you will be able to stay for 144 hours starting from midnight (i.e. 00:00 on September 19 for your case).

    Along with your passport and arrival card, you will need to present the immigration officers with proof of your ticket to travel to a third country within the allotted time period.

    Please note that if you are staying with friends rather than a hotel, you will need to register at the local police station to receive a temporary residence permit.

    For greater certainty, we recommend that you confirm your eligibility for the visa exemption with the Shanghai airport prior to your travels.

    Jacob says:

    Hello

    I’m an American who is traveling to Beijing and Shanghai from Chicago and also plan on visiting Japan during the middle of my trip. So my itinerary looks something like this: Feb 16/17 depart Chicago and arrive into Beijing, Feb 21 fly from Beijing to Tokyo, Feb 24 fly from Tokyo to Shanghai, Feb 28 fly back from Shanghai to Chicago. My round trip ticket only includes the travel between Chicago and China, whereas I have a separate ticket for Beijing-Tokyo-Shanghai. Under the 144hr visa exemption, I understand the A-B-C country thing, but I’m not sure if all of the destinations have to be in one complete ticket itinerary to qualify for the exemption, because mine are not, and I don’t technically think I am transiting through China. And if I do qualify for the 144hr exemption, could I still apply for a tourist visa anyways?

    Thanks

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Jacob,

    What is relevant for qualifying for the visa exemption is that you travel to a third country each time rather than if a given ticket is a return package. Because your trips are Chicago-Beijing-Tokyo, then Tokyo-Shanghai-Chicago, you should qualify for the exemption. However, we recommend that you still contact the relevant entry points in China to confirm your eligibility.

    Alternatively, you could apply for a double or multiple entry tourist visa to China in advance of your trip.

    Antony says:

    Hi
    I have a flight from London to Shanghai PVG on Asiana with a 2 hour connection in Seoul.
    I want to stay in Shanghai for 4 days and then fly back to Seoul for a few days and then return to London.
    Should I qualify for the 144 hour visa exemption at PuDong airport even though I have technically arrived from Seoul and going to Seoul or is my flight from London via Seoul classed as origin London as I wont be clearing customs in Seoul?

    Many thanks

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Antony,

    The authorities would likely determine that you are making a round-trip from Seoul because you will be arriving on a flight that departed from Seoul, even if it is just a connection. We recommend that you contact the Pudong Airport to confirm your eligibility.

    Nur Atiqah says:

    Hi,
    I am a Malaysian passport holder and will be taking a flight from Kelowna (Canada) to Kuala Lumpur via Shanghai (PVG) airport. My transit is 3 hours long in Shanghai (PVG). Do I require a Transit (G) visa? I have read the description regarding 24-hours travel without a visa, however, in some other websites, it was mentioned that Malaysian passport holder is not included in the list of countries that are eligible for that exemption.

    Thank you.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    A three hour in-airport transfer should not be a problem with the 24 hour visa exemption policy. However, we recommend that you contact the Pudong airport to confirm your eligibility.

    Bernard Shea says:

    My wife and I hold USA passports. We are going to take a cruise from Yokohama, Japan in October, 2018. The cruise line, Prince Diamond, will call at Xiamen, China on October 20 between 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, it will not stay overnight at the port. Do we need a China visa to have a land tour around the port? Can we apply China visa exemption for just a day time visit ? I called up China Consulate in New York City for advice and was told to consult Xiamen port authority for confirmation. What is our option ?

    alma says:

    My boss from Manila will go in Israel and will have a stop over in Guangzhou (canton) at 21:30 then will fly again at 1:35 via Hainan Airlines bound to Israel (TLV).Do he need a transit visa?

    Tim says:

    I have a 3 day layover planned in Beijing this Dec. Booked a flight Vancouver to Beijing (AIr Canada) on to Hanoi (AIr China); return flight with Air Canada from Taipai 2 weeks later. Was supposed to be all on same ticket but for some reason travel agent had to issue Air China segment separately (Air Canada shows it all as one). Air China also won’t give me a seat assignment for Beijing to Hanoi flight until I check in 24hrs prior (I’ll hopefully already be in beijing at that point). I noticed the visa-free entry requires a confirmed outbound ticket with seat, am I still ok? I’m not flying standby or anything but may not be able to get seat.

    Ann Porter says:

    Hi my family and I will be to travelling to Dubai for 3days in October 2018, we will then fly to Beijing from Dubai to spend 3 days and are then cruising for 12 days on a cruise ship from Tianjin. Our first port of call is Okinawa Japan, Tawain, Hong kong, and then on to Vietnam for 3 days. The cruise ends in Singapore from where we will fly home to the UK. Are we eligible for the 72 hr visa pass and if so where do we aplly for this. There are so many conflicting websites and we do not know if a visa is required. Your help in this matter would be much appreciated. thank you

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Bernard,

    According to this tool from the Chinese government, only Xiamen’s airport is eligible for a visa exemption: http://app.www.gov.cn/govdata/html5/2018/visafreetransit/pc/index.html

    We recommend you contact the Xiamen port to confirm your eligibility. Additionally, your cruise line might be able to offer some advisory on standard procedures.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello,

    Assuming that your boss holds a passport from an eligible country, Manila to Guangzhou to Israel, and then Israel to Guangzhou to Manila should qualify for the exemption.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Tim,

    If you have proof of a purchased ticket from Beijing to Hanoi, but haven’t been assigned a specific seat, that should be satisfactory to acquire the visa exemption. However, if it is not confirmed whether you will be able to board the flight, you may encounter some issues. We recommend that you contact the Beijing airport to confirm your status.

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Ann,

    Because you are arriving from Dubai and then traveling to Japan after three days, you should qualify for the visa exemption (assuming that you and your family hold passports from an eligible country). The visa exemption is acquired on arrival at the airport. The visa exemption only covers your stay in mainland China (Beijing and Tianjin).

    Kathryn Aherne-Valerio says:

    Dear China Briefing,
    i am an Australian citizen living and working in Singapore. I will travel, for work purposes, from Singapore to Guangzhou city only and back to Singapore (10 sept – 15 Sept). I have flights and hotel already booked.

    I have an appointment with the Chinese Visa center on Monday 3 sept in Singapore .
    Would I qualify for a 144 hour Transit Visa?

    thanks for your reply
    Kate

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Kate,

    Because you are not transiting to a third country, you unfortunately would likely not qualify for the transit visa. We recommend that you acquire a business visa (M visa) for your trip.

    Chris says:

    I am flying to Shanghia from the UK with a one hour stop in Doha. I will stay 24 hours to 30 hours in Shanghia the embark a cruise to Japan. Fly home from Singapore. Will not be re-entering China. Do I qualify for the 144 hour transit visa? Thank you

    China Briefing says:

    Hi Chris,

    Assuming that you hold a passport from an eligible country, it sounds as though you would qualify for the transit visa. However, we still recommend you confirm your eligibility with relevant authorities.

    Pedro says:

    Hello,
    I am USA passport holder and flying from USA to Beijing (PEK) arriving at 2:55 PM nov. 23 then flying out on nov. 27 8:35 AM from Beijing (PEK) to japan Tokyo (HND) staying in Tokyo for 5 days then from Tokyo (HND) back to USA. am i eligible for 72hr or 144hr visa in Beijing?

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Pedro,

    From the information you provided, it sounds like you should be eligible for a 144 hour visa exemption. However, we recommend that you still want to contact the Beijing airport to confirm your eligibility.

    Matthew Kennedy says:

    Hello I have an APEC card but my partner and son do not. We are intending to transit Shanghai for 96 hours France to New Zealand
    Would my partner and son be eligible for the 144 transit visa

    Matthew Kennedy says:

    Hello I have an APEC card but my partner and son do not. We are intending to transit Shanghai for 96 hours France to New Zealand
    Would my partner and son be eligible for the 144 transit visa

    Thankyou in advance

    Hannah says:

    Hello,
    My family plans to come and visit me in Shanghai with flying itinerary Paris>Dubai>Shanghai Pudong Airport on September 21 and plan to leave China for Myanmar on September 25 with following flight itinerary Shanghai Pudong Airport>Kunming Airport>Mandalay Airport.
    They are UK citizens.
    After reading this page, I understand they can’t leave China from Kunming ! If they leave from Nanjing Airport, is it okay?

    Thanks a lot for your help in advance.
    Hannah

    Hannah Pickering says:

    @Steve Rodhouse

    Hi Steve,
    I was wondering if you managed to enter China and receive the Transit Visa without any issue when flying to Beijing in August as my family will be having the similar kind of itinerary when they come late September.
    My family plans to come and visit me in Shanghai with flying itinerary Paris>Dubai>Shanghai Pudong Airport on September 21 and plan to leave China for Myanmar on September 25 with following flight itinerary Shanghai Pudong Airport>Kunming Airport>Mandalay Airport.
    They are UK citizens but I am worried that because they exit China from Kunming Airport, which is not a port for 144hour transit visa, even thought it’s just a transfer, they won’t be eligible for visa exemption.

    Would be great to hear how it went for you and if all was okay in the end?

    Thanks a lot,
    Hannah

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Matthew,

    If your partner and son hold passports from one of the eligible countries, based on the information you provided they should qualify for the transit visa. However, we still recommend that you contact the airport in Shanghai to confirm your family’s eligibility.

    China Briefing says:

    Hello Hannah,

    As you mentioned, you might not qualify for a transit visa exemption because you are going to two different jurisdictions in China, i.e. Shanghai and Kunming. As well, Kunming is not a participating city for the 144 hour visa exemption. If you leave via the Nanjing airport, however, you may qualify, as it is in the joint Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang area. Given the nature of your itinerary, we recommend that you contact relevant airport authorities to confirm your eligibility.

    Anton says:

    Hi Matthew,

    you mentioned thst Shenzen now allows transit without visa (entry permit on arrival) for the connecting flight within 24 hours. Could you please confirm that?
    Thanks
    Anton

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