Chinese Visa application requirements for non US citizen/passport holders

Revised: 2017-08-14

If you hold a non US passport and are on a temporary trip in US (e.g. tourist, business trip), normally you will not be able to apply for a Chinese visa in US. The consulate will ask that you apply in your home country. Only those who are in US for extended time (e.g. study, work) will be able to apply for a Chinese visa in US. In addition, you will only be allowed to apply for visa with limited number of entries.

I. Special document requirements for non US passport holders

If you use your non US passport to apply for visa, you must show evidence that you entered US legally. Please provide one or more of the following:

  1. If you have a green card:
    • (preferred) a notarized copy of your green card (front only, many banks do the notarization for free if you have an account with them),
  2. If you do not have a green card:
    • notarized copy of the immgration document (e.g. I-20, I-797) showing your legal status in US, with a clear expiration date.
    • A stamp on your passport with visa type (e.g. TN) and expiration date is also fine (please provide a copy).

Please note: officially, the consulate requires both the original and a copy of the document showing your current legal status in US, although plain copies work sometimes. We understand your concern on sending your original immigration document (like green card), and reached a compromise with the consulate by providing a notarized copy in lieu of the original. If you only provide a plain copy, we will not be responsible for any potential delay or loss that may occur.

II. Number of entries and duration of stay

As a non-US passport holder, you may not get the number of entries you applied for. In general, the consulate will not issue a visa that extends beyond your passport expiration date OR your US visa expiration date. For example, if your US visa expires in 5 months, you will most likely only get a single entry visa.

As a rule of thumb, double entry is pretty easy to get for everyone, but 1-year multiple is usually only issued to those with a Chinese family tie.

For US citizens, 60 days duration of stay (the number of days you can stay in China once admitted) is standard, but for non-US citizens, 30 days is very common.

Please note, we cannot guarantee that you get a particular number of entries or duration of stay. The decision by the consul is final -- that means the consulate will not change a visa once issued, unless there was an obvious mistake.

III. Visa fee and processing time

On the bright side, the application fee charged by the Chinese consulate for non-US passports is generally lower than that for US passports.

  • single entry $30
  • double entry $45
  • 6-month multiple $60
  • 1-year multiple $90
When you fill out the online order form, please enter your country (replace the "USA"), and the system will calculate the fees as a non-US passport.

Visa fees for Romanians is $90-150 and is not in our computer system.

Because the consulate fees for non-US passports are not posted in public for certain countries, and they may change from time to time, the actually cost may be different from what we have in our computer system. You will pay the actual cost that the consulate charges us and we will either refund the difference to you or ask you to pay the difference.

Our service fee is the also lower for non US citizens, please see fee table for details.

The visa processing time is normally 4 business days, but may take longer. Sometimes the consulate may ask the applicant to come in person for interview. If that happens, we will arrange the interview for you (we may charge an extra $100 in additional to normal service fee).

IV. Dual citizenship

If you have dual citizenship, and you want to use your non US passport, you must also have evidence on your non US passport showing that you entered US legally. Your US passport cannot be used as evidence to support your visa application. The reason is that US does not officially recognize dual citizenship. We understand that this requirement will prevent most people from using their non US passports to apply for a Chinese visa.

Created: 2005-07-06
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