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72-Hour Visa-Free Transit FAQ

Passport holders of following the 54 countries can enjoy 72-hours visa-free Transit via Beijing Capital International Airport, Shanghai Pudong Airport, Shanghai Hongqiao Airport, and airports of cities including Guangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing, Shenyang, Dalian, Harbin, Xi'an, Guilin, Kunming, Hangzhou, Wuhan, Tianjin, Qingdao, Nanjing, Changsha, and Xiamen:

 Schengen Countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland

 Other European Countries: Albania, Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus, Croatia, Ireland, Macedonia, Monaco, Republic of Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, UK, Ukraine

 America: US, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile

 Oceania: Australia, New Zealand

 Asia: Republic of Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, UAE, Qatar

Passengers holding passports of the above countries, if transiting in Guangdong, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei, Xi'an, Chongqing, Liaoning, Chengdu, Wuhan, Xiamen, Qingdao or Kunming can enjoy a free stay of 144 hours. 

Passengers transiting in Guangdong can enter from Guangzhou Baiyun Airport, Shenzhen Bao'an Airport, or Jieyang Chaoshan Airport, and leave from any port in Guangdong.

Passengers transiting in Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang can enter and exit from Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport, Nanjing Lukou AirportNingbo Lishe Airport or any port in Shanghai.

Those who transit in Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei can enter and exit from Capital International Airport, Beijing West Railway Station, Binhai International Airport, Tianjin International Cruise Home Port, Zhengding International Airport or Qinhuangdao Beidaihe International Airport.

Those who transit in Liaoning can enter and exit from Shenyang Taoxian International Airport or Dalian Zhoushuizi International Airport.

Those who transit in Chengdu, Wuhan, Kunming can only enter and exit from Shuangliu International Airport, Tianhe International Airport, or Changshui International Airport.

Those who transit in Xiamen or Qingdao can enter and exit from Gaoqi International Airport or Liuting International Airport and their sea ports. 

 See more about 144-Hour Visa-Free Transit Policy.

For the most frequently asked questions about this policy concerned, we try to make a sweeping generalization here, and hope this is helpful.

FAQ about 72-hour Visa-free Transit:

 1. What documents are required for passengers from the above countries to benefit from this policy and apply for permits to go out of the airport?

 Passengers are qualified to transit in those cities without visa only if they have valid passport or travel documents, as well as the confirmed flight ticket onward to the third country or region and valid visa (if required).

 2. How and where can I apply for a transit permit if I plan to go out of the airport during my stopover?

 You can put forward your request for transit to your airline in advance, so that the airline can declare this to the Immigration Inspection prior to your visit. You will be granted a transit permit at the airport if you meet all requirements. NOTE: Beijing Capital International Airport has now changed this procedure, passengers can apply directly for 72 hour free transit permit after arrival at the airport.

 3. I plan to enter Shanghai first and then buy ticket to another country within 72 hours. Am I allowed entry and transit without visa?

 According to the requirements, you must provide confirmed ticket to the third country or region when apply for the free transit permit. Otherwise, you can not enjoy this policy.

 4. I have a flight ticket from New York to Shanghai, and a separate ticket back to Los Angles. May I use this 72 hour free transit?

 The answer is NO. The place of departure and destination should not be in the same country or region. If you fly from New York to a third country via Shanghai, then you apply to this policy.

 5. If I can not depart within 3 days, what should I do?

 If you cannot depart from the transit city within the 3 days allowed, then you should apply for a Chinese visa from local Public Security Bureau.

 6. I plan to take a flight to Beijing for 3 days, and then take Trans-Siberian train from there to Ulan Bator in Mongolia. Am I eligible for this trip?

 Visa is required if you visit China this way. 72 hour free transit policy is for air passengers only. That is to say, you have to leave by air from the same airport. For passengers who plan to enter or leave China by train or cruise, they should apply for either Chinese transit (G type) or tourist (L type) in advance.

 7. If the arrival and departure of flights is more than 72 hours, is it permissible remain in the airport for some of the time and go to the city for the 72 hours or is the timing form the flight times?

 If it is only several hours more than the requirements, you can apply to enjoy this policy without waiting. According to the latest information from the airports, the 72 hours are calculated from 00:00 the following day of the entry date to the scheduled departure time in almost all the airports. However, if you happen to transfer in Beijing, you had better consult the airport in advance by dialing 0086-10-56095400, just in case that the 72-hour period counts from the scheduled arrival time to the departure time.

 8. If I understood correctly, even with this free transit policy for 72 hours, a transit permit has to be done at the airport when arriving? And this transit permit has to be then registered in a police station in the 24 next hours? What happens if my stay there is only of 20 hours? Can I save myself this registration which is probably time-consuming?

 Yes, you are right, the transit permit should be done at the airport on arrival. But the registration will be done when you check into a hotel. It is not necessary to register yourself personally at the local police station.

 Anyway, if you still have questions on 72 hour visa-free transit, please contact the Immigration Office or airport for more information.

Beijing Airport Immigration Inspection 0086-10-56095400
Shanghai General Station of Immigration Inspection 0086-21-51105100
Guangzhou Airport Immigration Inspection 0086-20-36066950
Chengdu Airport 0086-28-85205555
Chongqing Airport 0086-23-966666
Shenyang Airport 0086-24-96833
Dalian Airport 0086-411-96600
Harbin Airport 0086-451-82894220
Xi'an Airport 0086-29-88796997
Guilin Airport 0086-773-2845359
Kunming Airport 0086-871-96566
Hangzhou Airport 0086-571-96299
Wuhan Airport Immigration Inspection 0086-27-85333600
Tianjin Airport Immigration Inspection 0086-22-24905908
Qingdao Airport 0086-532-96567
Nanjing Airport 0086-25-968890
Changsha Airport 0086-731-96777
Xiamen Airport Immigration Inspection 0086-592-5706805

 Further Reading:
China Visa-free Policy

How to Travel to China without a Visa

- Last updated on Jan. 19, 2024 by Brenda Lian -
Questions & Answers on 72-Hour Visa-Free Transit FAQ
Asked by Julian Bishop from UK | Mar. 30, 2024 07:13Reply
Flying into Beijing Capital and out from Daxing International
Hello, can I fly into Beijing Capital (from INC) and fly out from DAXING (to LHR) and still use the 72 hour visa free transit?
Answers (1)
Answered by Borut | Apr. 01, 2024 03:53

Yes, of course you can. Daxing airport is perfectly fine for visa free transit in the same way as it is Capital airport. When you are flying on this scheme, you are also allowed to mix the airports within one transit area. Also, you should just take care that it is not 72, but 144 hour visa free transit in Beijing because 72 hours were extended to more generous 144 hours years ago. You are good to go.
Asked by Phil from UK | Mar. 09, 2024 03:42Reply
24 hr or 72 hr ...which is best and how to apply
I land at Tianjin 4.15 pm, overnight in a hotel nearby and then travel to the cruise port to board a cruise ship about midday. Which is the best way to obtain the applicable visa . Will my passport and cruise ticket/boarding pass be sufficient documentation?
Answers (1)
Answered by John | Mar. 11, 2024 00:35

The 72-hour has been extended to 144-hour visa free transit. If your stay time within China is longer than 24 hours, then you will be given a 144-hour. Yes, your passport and cruise ticket will be sufficient to apply for the temporary entry permit.
Asked by Mark LEE from TAIWAN | Feb. 19, 2024 20:19Reply
72 hours free-visa transit via Shanghai
American and Canadian would like to go to Shanghai for conference or tourist with schedule below
Taipei to Hongqiao (12APR) // Pudong to Seoul (14APR) and Seoul to Taipei on (14APR) with same day connection. Is this eligible for 72 hrs free-visa transit
1. different airports in/out SHA/PVG,
2. return to Taipei on same day via Seoul the third country.
Answers (1)
Answered by Harry | Feb. 20, 2024 01:47

Yes, it is eligible for the 144-hour visa-free transit in Shanghai. It is okay to use different airports.
Asked by JC from UNITED KINGDOM | Feb. 12, 2024 04:34Reply
UK citizen to/from Hanoi via Shenzhen
UK citizen flying from London to Hanoi from London with layover in Shenzhen.

Return journey includes 32hr layover in Shenzhen, are we eligible for 72hr visa free travel?
Answers (1)
Answered by Tiffany | Feb. 17, 2024 18:44

Yes, you are in fact eligible for the 144-hour visa-free transit.
Asked by Dean from UNITED KINGDOM | Jan. 24, 2024 22:34Reply
Chengdu Tianfu Airport
Is this the 144 visa exemption available at this Chengdu airport or only at Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport ? Tianfu doesn't appear to be listed on details pages from China.
Answers (1)
Answered by Borut | Jan. 25, 2024 02:42

Both Tianfu and Shuangliu airports in Chengdu are available for 144 hour visa free transit. There is no doubt about it and you can freely and with absolute peace of mind use both of them.
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