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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
How to Apply a China Visa in Hong Kong
China Visa Application Requirements

- Last modified on Jan. 22, 2021 -
Questions & Answers on Apply for China Visa in a Third Country
Asked by Jeff from MAINLAND CHINA | Apr. 18, 2021 09:49Reply
I was told can get a Chinese tourist visa in Macao
A few days ago I was told the Macao Chinese visa office is he’s ting tourist visas to China and you don’t have to quarantine when returning to China from Macao. Is this true ?
Answers (1)
Answered by Jessica | Apr. 19, 2021 00:51

I'm afraid this is not true.
Asked by Ray from AUSTRALIA | Apr. 10, 2021 17:55Reply
Chinese visa in Dubai from Australia
I’m Australian. Is it possible for me to go to Dubai to take the Chinese covid vaccine then apply for Chinese Visa in Dubai and then fly to China? I have no visa in Dubai. I would be considered a tourist.
Answers (1)
Answered by Fiona | Apr. 19, 2021 00:49

Yes, it's possible to do so if you have enough documents to justify your travel purpose to China.
Asked by Jay from CANADA | Mar. 10, 2021 02:03Reply
Obtain L visa in Macau?
In regards to current situation of pandemic, is it possible to obtain an L-Visa in Macau? I am a canadian citizen.
Answers (1)
Answered by Susan | Mar. 15, 2021 01:48

It is not possible to do this any longer.
Asked by Jay from CANADA | Mar. 10, 2021 01:10Reply
Waiting for criminal record from canada in china
I am a Canadian citizen, currently in Shenzhen China, and my residence permit is expiring on the 13th. But I can’t apply for a new work permit since I am still waiting for a criminal record from Canada to be sent here as my old one has expired. It’s in processing and soon to be sent and arrive. Within few weeks.
What other choices do I have ?
Because of the pandemic, it’s hard to go out of China.
Is going to Macau and applying for a travel visa there possible? And with the Travel visa, I can return to shenzhen, while the time is enough for my documents from Canada to arrive and reapply for a new work visa.
Answers (2)
Answered by Chaney | Mar. 10, 2021 17:50

Hey Jay, I am in a similar situation with you. I am in mainland trying to switch from student to work visa. But I was able to get a non-criminal check from the PSB and that was okay. I have been here 5 years. Not sure how long you have been there and if that is an option, but maybe you can look into it.
Answered by Jay | Mar. 10, 2021 21:04

Thanks for the reply. I have to wait another six months until my one year is completed from the date of my registration at the police. They can’t give our a criminal record for only 6 months... kind of in a pickle right now if I am forced to return to Canada
Asked by charlotte from CHINA | Mar. 04, 2021 00:27Reply
how an european to apply china z visa in korea?
my friend is from BELARUS, she is working as a model in SOUTH KOREA . if she needs to apply an china z visa in korea, what documents or requirements are needed? thanks for answering my question. have a good day.
Answers (1)
Answered by Amanda | Mar. 15, 2021 00:27

She will need to submit her passport, application form, recent passport style photo, ARC card of South Korea, work permit of China and a PU or TE invitation letter from China.
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