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Apply for China Visa in a Third Country

It’s a common scene that travelers need to obtain China visas in a country which is not their home country, usually called a third country.

Can you apply for a Chinese visa in another country?

While it is possible to apply for Chinese visa outside home country, you may run into more difficulties compared with applying from your own country. Some consular offices do not accept applications from temporary visitors in the country concerned. In some cases having a visa for that country is considered OK, but this might be of no help if you are in a country where you do not require one.

There is no simple answer to this issue, nor is it clear exactly why this rule exists. The first option is to try at every Chinese consulate en route in the hope that one will grant you a China visa. Some people may courier passport and application to a friend or agent in their own country to apply for China visa, but this will be in vain because the applicant is required to be physically in the application country.

Requirements for Applying China Visa in a Third Country

1. Passport with a remaining validity of six months and blank visa pages
2. A completed China Visa Application Form
3. A 48mm x 33mm recent color photo
4. Proof of legal stay or residency in the third country, which can be your visa, residence permit, student certificate or employment permit in the country
5. Other documents supporting your reason for the intended travel, such as travel itinerary, round-trip tickets, or an invitation letter from a China travel agency

Apply for China Visa in Hong Kong and Macau

Hong Kong and Macau are considered as foreign territory on this regard so they are considered as 'third regions'.

It’s possible to apply for a Chinese visa in Hong Kong or Macau, but maybe for shorter duration of stay compared with applying from your home country. If you have an ID card or long-term visa there, it may facilitate the application.

Generally speaking, you can only get single or double entry China visa if you are visitors in Hong Kong without HK ID Card; if you have previous entries into mainland or you are Hong Kong student/work visa holders, you possibly can get a multiple-entry visa to mainland. The same rule applies to Macau.

As there is chance that your application may get refused, here TravelChinaGuide advises that you had better arrange Chinese visa in advance in your resident country to reduce the risk of visa refusal. If you have to apply from HK or Macau, you need to go to the China Visa Application Center in Hong Kong or the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the PRC in Macau.

China Visa Application Center in Hong Kong

Address: 20th Floor, Capital Center, 151 Gloucester Road, Wanchai
Opening Hours: 09:00 - 16:00 from Monday to Friday (except public holidays)
Telephone: 852-29921999
Fax: 852-29891116
Email: hongkongcenter@visaforchina.org

Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the PRC in Macau

It is quite small and some travelers suggest it is less generous than the Hong Kong office.

Address: No. 208, Av. de Marciano Baptista
Telephone: 853- 87915404
Fax: 853- 28726900
Offices Hours: 09:00 - 12:30 & 14:30 - 18:00 from Monday to Friday (except public holidays)

Cost for Applying from Hong Kong & Macau

China Visa Fee US Canada UK New Zealand
Apply in HK HKD 1,340 HKD 850 HKD 1,180 HKD 1,070
Apply in Macau MOP 1,130 MOP 630 MOP 1,190 MOP 850

* For reference only.
* It takes 4 working days for visa processing. If you want to get it within 2-3 days, you have to apply for rush service or express service by paying extra money.

 Note: Foreigners residing in Taiwan can apply for China visa either from Hong Kong or Macau, or from their home country.

Further Reading:

How to Apply for a China Visa
China Visa Application Requirements

- Last modified on Dec. 29, 2019 -
Questions & Answers on Apply for China Visa in a Third Country
Asked by Emma from PHILIPPINES | Feb. 24, 2020 02:31Reply
Tourist Philippines passport holder
Hello, I'm a tourist here a Macau,a Filipino citizen, its possible I can apply L visa to China, I want to visit nanning. Thank you for answer.
Answers (1)
Answered by Jacob from USA | Feb. 26, 2020 18:19

You can have a try at the Commissioner Office of the Foreign Affairs Ministry of China in Macau or at the China Visa Office in Hong Kong.
Asked by hannah Carter from CHINA | Feb. 22, 2020 13:36Reply
Renew/Extend Chinese F visa from Thailand
I am in Beijing and my boss has suggested I work remotely from Thailand for 2 weeks while the city goes into lockdown. Due to the virus my current visa was just recently exceptionally renewed in Beijing, but it is single entry and I will need to return to China. Will I be able to renew/extend visa in Bangkok, Thailand? I am a UK citizen.
Answers (1)
Answered by Alan from CANADA | Feb. 26, 2020 18:20

When you are in Thailand, you can't renew your current visa, but you can apply for a new China visa at the Chinese Visa Application Center there.
Asked by John from USA | Feb. 21, 2020 03:55Reply
Renew or convert visa
My residence visa expires in 2 weeks. I am not on mainland and left behind everything when the virus started. Can I convert to a 10 year tourist visa for Americans?
Answers (1)
Answered by Cynthia from USA | Feb. 21, 2020 20:44

Yes, you can apply for a 10 year tourist visa in the US.
Asked by Dr Michael Salter from CHINA / UK | Feb. 04, 2020 19:28Reply
applying for a visa from macao
because of the virus shutdown it may not be possible to apply for work or Q family visit visa in my hometown in GD province before my visa expires at the end of this month, I am married to a chinese national should i go to Macao before my visa ends and apply from there?
Answers (1)
Answered by Violet from AUSTRALIA | Feb. 11, 2020 19:17

Yes, you can have a try. However, I think Hong Kong is a better option.
Asked by R from AUSTRALIA | Feb. 04, 2020 15:22Reply
Can I get a Chinese Visa while visiting Singapore and or Malaysia?
I am a New Zealand citizen, leaving my country of residence (Australia) early March to Malaysia and Singapore. I was to be going on an artist residency in China April - June and so was going to get a Chinese Visa before I leave Australia. But the residency in China has been postponed to an unknown date due to the virus. It will be more than 3 months after I leave Australia so I can't get a visa before I leave because it would expire.

Will I be able to get one while visiting a county in South East Asia or will I have to come back to Australia first?
Answers (1)
Answered by Frank from GERMANY | Feb. 11, 2020 19:16

As far as I know, it's not feasible in Singapore as long as you don't have a residence permit there. You can have a try in Malaysia or Thailand.
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