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Hong Kong Visa Policy

Hong Kong Visa
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Hong Kong visa is not required for tourists from more than 160 countries. A stay ranging from 7 to 180 days is granted according to nationality. People from those Hong Kong visa free countries, however, need to get a HK visa if they intend to work, study, establish or join in a business there or if their tour is beyond the granted visa-free stay length. Also, other countries' citizens have to get a HK visa before leaving for HK as it's almost impossible to get it on arrival.

Although Hong Kong is a part of China, as a Special Administrative Region (SAR), it has its own entry regulations. This means the normal Chinese visa does not work for Hong Kong and vice versa.

Generally, Hong Kong is very open to foreigners who simply want to visit as a tourist to conduct business activities for an overseas business such as visiting clients and prospects, providing training, or attending trade fairs. Overall, the rules are essentially the same as under the British administration that preceded the SAR's return to Chinese control.

Always remember that all countries and Chinese SARs have the right to refuse entry to any person, whatever the regulations permit, and that even when you have a visa you can be denied entry at the border. Also, the information provided here is for people travelling on standard passports, not special ones like diplomatic or service passports, nor special or restricted passports.

Do I need a visa to visit Hong Kong?

Most tourists do not require a visa for a visit to HK. Please see the HK Visa Exemption for Foreign Countries/Areas. All visitors arriving at Immigration control points will be issued with landing slips in lieu of stamping on their passports/travel documents. Conditions and limit of stay in HK, as well as visitor’s personal information and arrival date will be included in the landing slip. Upon departure, no slip will be issued and the travel documents will not be stamped.

The most favored are British nationals who, provided they meet the basic criteria, may enter HK for 180 days without obtaining a visa in advance. USA citizens, Canadians, Australians, New Zealanders and most European nationals may enter for 90 days. Others are variously restricted to 30, 14, or 7 days, or in the case of a few countries will only be permitted to enter having previously obtained a visa. Most tourists can easily take the ferry from HK to Macau which has a policy similar to Hong Kong's and typically they will not normally require a Macau visa. They can exit Hong Kong and re-enter for another stay. There is usually no problem re-entering unless the immigration authorities feel you are breaking some rules such as being engaged in business. However, you may be allowed to visit for a longer duration by applying for a visa prior to travel - but it is at the discretion of the consular office whether to grant it or not.

 Note: From January 23, 2017, Indian nationals will need to make a success pre-arrival registration online before they can visit or transit and enter the HKSAR visa-free. Indians in direct transit by air and not leaving the airport transit area are not required to do so.

Basic Entry Requirements for All Foreign Visitors

• have a minimum validity on passport of 1 month beyond the intended stay, or the duration of the visa may be restricted so that there will be one month after the visa expiry
• properly complete the immigration card on arrival
• have a visa if your nationality is required to have one
• have onward or return travel arrangements
• have sufficient funds for your stay without working, based on Immigration's definition, not yours
• no serious criminal records and unlikely to be involved in crime, nor be considered a security risk

Most travelers, especially from western countries, are not checked for compliance with the last three but all travelers should allow for the possibility that immigration might choose to check you. You should also check with your airline's regulations as they may not allow you to fly if you do not meet the stated entry requirements.

Major Types of HK Visa

Tourist / Business / Transit / Employment and Investment / Training / Working holiday / Study / Residence as Dependants
 Where to Apply / Required Documents / Processing Time / Fees

Visitors are normally not permitted to change the type issued or move from a non-visa situation to obtaining one after arrival but of course it is easy to exit HK and apply for a Hong Kong Visa again.

There is full information on the HK Immigration Department webpage:

You can get all the forms and the guidelines from the website.

  Foreign Consulates in Hong Kong

- Last updated on Aug. 28, 2023 -
Questions & Answers on Hong Kong Visa Policy
Asked by helen from UNITED STATES | Aug. 04, 2023 11:21Reply
Visa for China
I want to go to Beijing China. arriving and leaving 6 days. Do I need a visa
Answers (5)
Answered by Eric | Aug. 06, 2023 23:07

Yes, US passport holders need a visa to visit China. But they are also eligible for Beijing 144-hour visa free transfer if the flight route is eligible, like US - Beijing - HK - US. Maybe you can create an eligible route if you are going to visit Beijing only.
Answered by helen tinnerman | Aug. 07, 2023 06:41

Thank you for your response; whom do I contact to secure an eligible route to stay in China with a 144 hour visa? I do not know where to start on this process!
Answered by Molly | Aug. 07, 2023 18:07

You don't have to contact any one. Just hold your onward flight ticket and apply for a temporary stay permit at the 144 hour visa-free transit counter in the airport.
Answered by jayn | Aug. 28, 2023 01:55

Thank you for your response; whom do I contact to secure an eligible route to stay in China with a 144 hour visa? I do not know where to start on this process!
Answered by Eva | Aug. 28, 2023 02:36

Hello, Jayn, none cannot secure that for you. You just make sure your route is eligible and have the onward ticket and passport with you when landing. There is a counter at the airport processing it for you.
Asked by Leonard Diatezua from DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO | Jul. 31, 2023 06:25Reply
HK visa from Dem. Rep. Of the Congo
How to obtain a visa to travel to HK when living in the DRC?
Answers (1)
Answered by Vivian | Aug. 01, 2023 02:07

You need to submit the application to China embassy in DRC.
Asked by Zagrya Tredoux from SOUTH AFRICA | Jun. 02, 2023 02:01Reply
As a South African working in China, what do I need to tour to Hong Kong?
If I want to visit Hong Kong as a tourist, coming from China, what must I have regarding documentation. I work in China, but is a South African citizen. Do I need anything like a visa to enter and travel in Hong Kong?
Answers (1)
Answered by Jesse | Jun. 04, 2023 20:39

As you are a South African passport holder, you can enter HK without a visa and stay for at most 30 days.
Asked by Steve from UK | May. 01, 2023 05:17Reply
Re-entry to China from Hong Kong
We plan to be based in Guangzhou for 3 weeks and to visit Hong Kong a couple of times whilst we're in China
Do we need a multiple entry Chinese tourist visa to re-enter China mainland from Hong Kong?
Answers (3)
Answered by Lisa | May. 04, 2023 20:45

Yes, you do need a multiple-entry visa.
Answered by Matt | May. 26, 2023 09:22

My 14 year old son that was born in China but is Canadian 'cause of me is arriving in Hong Kong next week. He's applying for a Chinese visa to re-unite with me and my wife that is Chinese. This family visa seems tough and so I am leaning towards L. Should I go for L or stick to Q or S instead? I want him to get his visa ASAP in Hong Kong next week.
Answered by Molly | May. 28, 2023 18:32

Generally, the Q and S visa may need more required documents, and L visa only needs an invitation letter or flight tickets and hotel orders. So it is okay for you to apply for an L visa first.
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