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Overstaying in China & Penalty

Overstaying, also called illegal residence, means that one remains in a country after his/her visa or residence permit has expired. If an alien’s total length of stay in China exceeds the appointed time on the visa, it will be deemed to have overstayed the visa. For instance, if a foreigner enters China on June 19 with a 30-day visa, he is supposed to leave on July 19. Since the stay length in China is counted from 00:00 the next morning following the entry date, if the foreigner leaves on July 22, he will have overstayed his visa by three days.

Note that if the scheduled time on your departure ticket is later than your visa’s expiration time, you will be regarded as having overstayed even if you go through the immigration inspection before the visa expiration time. However, if your scheduled departure time precedes the visa expiration time, but the carrier changes the schedule, you won’t have overstayed your visa.

Do I Have A Grace Period?

According to the current policy, there is no grace period for illegal aliens overstaying in China, so overstaying your visa is not recommended. However, if you have overstayed your China visa for only one or two days, go to the exit and entry administration of the local PSB (Public Security Bureau) to apologize and explain the reasons. In this case, you might not need to pay the fine.

What Are the Penalties for Overstaying in China & How Much Does It Cost?

Based on the current immigration regulations, there are different punishments to foreigners according to the length of the overstay. 
1. Aliens overstaying the visa or residence permit for a short period will be given a warning and be required to pay a fine. Usually, the penalty is CNY500 per day not to exceed CNY10,000. 
2. If one overstays the visa for a significant period, usually over one month, he might be put into a detention camp for 5 to 15 days and repatriated to his home country. It's possible he will be blacklisted, which will affect his re-entry to China, and he may be prohibited from entering the country for ten years. In addition to this, it might also influence one's visa application for other countries.

What Can I Do after Overstaying?

If you have overstayed your visa in mainland China, you should report your situation to the local police station as soon as possible, pay the fine, and then apply for an exit permit to leave the country.

How Do I Prevent Unintentional Overstaying in China?

In order to prevent unintentional overstaying, ​you should remember your date of entering the country and length of your visa. Moreover, you should learn how to calculate the stay length. Understanding that the stay length is counted from the next day is critical to prevent overstaying in China unintentionally. In addition, if you want to stay longer, you can apply for an extension 7 days before your visa expires.
- Last modified on Jan. 21, 2021 -
Questions & Answers on Overstaying in China & Penalty
Asked by Car from SINGAPORE | Apr. 18, 2021 08:06Reply
A friend is more than a year of overstay..
I have this friend, who is currently in China for work. She's been staying in Ch for more than a year now but she doesnt have the Work and Residence Permit because her employer refused to process them when she got China. She is only holding the entry visa. What is the best thing for her to do.. ?? What government agency is she gonna call first?
Asked by Nanai Oreke from PAPUA NEW GUINEA | Apr. 15, 2021 23:46Reply
Consequences of overstaying in China
In terms of administrative warning, what does execution mode and duration on the spot mean in terms of any overstay of an illegal person in China
Asked by Tyrone from USA | Apr. 05, 2021 22:54Reply
Overstay due to full passport
I went to apply for my residence permit but did not have any free pages. My visa will expire a day before my appointment to get a new passport, which will take most likely 2 weeks. I don't mind a fine since I was late, will it affect my application for the residence permit when I do receive my passport?
Answers (1)
Answered by Chris | Apr. 11, 2021 19:54

If you can submit the application of your residence permit within the 30 days after your arrival, it will be fine.
Asked by olivier from ITALY | Mar. 16, 2021 23:15Reply
pandemic.. no flight available
due to the pandemic, I did not find a flight on time and my visa will be till the 18th of March. my flight, already booked, will be on the 23rd. should I go to the airport and it is there that they will issue the fine ? when visiting the entry-exit bureau today, they person told me that I have to take any other flight to go out of the country for 18th.... I think I am ready to pay the fine then. how does it work ?
Answers (1)
Answered by John | Mar. 17, 2021 18:53

it's best to go to the nearest immigration office, if you're still in China. Let them know. And you should only need to get your passport stamped. Plus they'll ask you some questions. And of course you'll need to pay a fine.
Asked by Ayman from SOUTH AFRICA | Mar. 15, 2021 01:28Reply
Is there any chance of forgiveness or fine to return to china after being deported on overstaying?
Answers (1)
Answered by Lydia | Mar. 21, 2021 23:08

It depends on how long you have overstayed in China. If the situation is serious, you may not be able to get a China visa any more.
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