Wondering how to get a China visa in Hong Kong? Use this guide to navigate through the steps that will have all those boxes ticked in no time.
This article is written especially for travelers from the west, including visitors from the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand who want to apply for a visa for China, however, it’s important to note that travelers from around 170 countries and territories can visit Hong Kong without a Chinese visa for a duration of between 7 and 180 days.
How to get a Chinese visa in Hong Kong
While it’s good news that you can enjoy Hong Kong without the concern of arranging a visa, if your travel plans take in anywhere else in China, you will need a visa. Apart from ordinary passport holders from Singapore, Brunei, and Japan who can enjoy visa-free access to China for up to 15 days, every other visitor is required to make arrangements for the relevant China visa.
Our big tip on this? We strongly recommend travelers make tour arrangements well in advance of their visit to China and apply for a Chinese visa from the Chinese embassy or consulate in their country of origin.
Now the caveat on applying for a China visa is this: If you plan to take advantage of the 72 or 144-hour visa-free transit policy (that applies to 20 cities in China), then you don’t need to apply for a Chinese visa.
Let’s explain how that would work with a few sample itineraries. Hint: These examples do not require a Chinese visa.
Hong Kong – Shanghai – USA
Hong Kong – Beijing – Tianjin – Japan
Hong Kong – Guangzhou – Australia
To make things clearer – and show how you can optimize the flexible travel policy available by making Hong Kong the start point for your holiday – we’ve put together this table that shows exactly which cities and regions you can visit in addition to time spent in Hong Kong.
City of entry
Visa-free transit zone
|Beijing||144-hour visa-free by air, sea or train||Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region|
|Tianjin||144-hour visa-free by air or sea||Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region|
|Shijiazhuang||144-hour visa-free via airport||Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region|
|Qinhuangdao||144-hour visa-free via seaport||Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region|
|Shanghai||144-hour visa-free by air, sea or train||Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang region|
|Hangzhou||144-hour visa-free via airport||Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang region|
|Nanjing||144-hour visa-free via airport||Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang region|
|Ningbo||144-hour visa-free via airport||Shanghai-Jiangsu-Zhejiang region|
|Shenyang||144-hour visa-free via airport||Liaoning Province|
|Dalian||144-hour visa-free via airport||Liaoning Province|
|Qingdao||144-hour visa-free by air or sea||Shandong Province|
|Chengdu||144-hour visa-free via airport||Chengdu and other nearby cities: including Leshan, Deyang, Suining, Meishan, Ya’an, Ziyang, Neijiang, Zigong, Luzhou and Yibin|
|Xiamen||144-hour visa-free by air or sea||Xiamen|
|Kunming||144-hour visa-free via airport||Kunming|
|Wuhan||144-hour visa-free via airport||Wuhan|
|Guangzhou||144-hour visa-free via airport||Guangdong Province|
|Shenzhen||144-hour visa-free via airport||Guangdong Province|
|Jieyang||144-hour visa-free via airport||Guangdong Province|
|Chongqing||144-hour visa-free via airport||Chongqing|
|Xi’an||144-hour visa-free via airport||Xi’an, Xianyang|
|Guilin||72-hour visa-free via airport||Guilin|
|Harbin||72-hour visa-free via airport||Harbin|
|Changsha||72-hour visa-free via airport||Hunan Province|
What if I’m a expat? How do I get a China visa in Hong Kong?
Hong Kong continues to operate as an important commercial hub in Asia and it’s no surprise that it still draws workers who want to experience the city as a working professional. If you fall into this category, you can apply for a China visa at the Chinese Vi