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China Student Visa (X)

Chinese student visa, also known as the X visa, is issued to aliens who come to China for study, advanced studies, or fieldwork. It can be divided into two types:

X1 visa: For long-term study > 180 days
X2 visa: For short-term study ≤ 180 days

The validity of both is 90 days from the date of issue, while the stay duration for X1 visa is usually 000, which needs to be determined after the applicant enters China, and that for X2 visa is not more than 180 days.

For international students, it’s necessary to find an organization accredited for offering courses or internships to foreigners so that they will send a JW201 or JW202 form and an admission letter.
See Chinese Universities Enrolling Foreign Students

China Student Visa Requirements & Documents

1. Passport

- Applicant's original passport valid up to at least six months with at least one blank page.

2. Application Form

- One accurately and truthfully completed China Student Visa Application Form.

3. Recent Photo

- Affix one recent passport style color photo with full face, front view, no hat, and against a plain light background onto the application form.

4. Admission Notice

- Original and a copy of Admission Notice from the Chinese university or school.

5. JW201 or JW202 Form - for X1 application only

Original and a copy of approved Foreign Student Visa Application Form JW201 or JW202.

1. Since US students can now apply for the five-year X1 visa, their passports should have a remaining validity of at least one year if applying for the 5-year X1 visa.
2. The JW201 or JW202 form should be obtained through the school you are to enroll at. JW201 form is issued to international students dispatched by government or funded by Chinese government scholarships while JW202 is for self-sponsored foreign students. (Download Application Form for Chinese Government Scholarship)

How to Apply for China X visa

1. You may submit the application to the consular office of the Chinese embassies, consulates, or China Visa Application Centers (CVASC) in person.
2. Or you can entrust someone else (e.g. friends, relatives), a travel agency or a visa agency to act on your behalf if you can't come personally. Power of attorney is not required.
3. Mailed applications are refused by most Chinese embassies or consulates, but acceptable in many CVASCs.
4. Appointment is not required by most embassies and consulates. But if you are required to submit application to CVASC, you may need to make an online appointment via CVASC's website.

Processing Time

The regular processing time is 4 working days. If you want to collect your visa earlier, the express service and rush service are available.
Express Service: 2-3 working days processing; extra US$ 20 will be charged.
Rush Service: 1 working day processing; extra US$ 30 will be charged.

China Student Visa Fees

The fee for X visa is the same with the fee for other types of Chinese visa. Since X1 visa only has one entry and seldom do Chinese embassies and consulates issue multiple-entry X2 visas, here we only list single-entry and double-entry X visa fees for reference.

China X Visa Types US Citizens Canadian Citizens UK Citizens Australian Citizens
Single Entry USD 140 CAD 142 GBP 151 AUD 109.5
Double Entries USD 140 CAD 142 GBP 151 AUD 139.5

For more details, please click China Visa Fees.

Things to Know for X1 Visa Holders

X1 visa holders shall apply for a Temporary Residence Permit from the local Exit and Entry Administration within 30 days upon entry into China. The temporary residence permit can be issued with the validity of up to 5 years. Documents required include passport, admission notice, JW201 or JW202 form, Foreigner Physical Examination Record, a registration of accommodation, and a passport style white-background photo.

Within the validity of the Temporary Residence Permit, students can travel into and out of mainland China freely.

When the study in China ends, X1 visa holders should go to the local Exit and Entry Administration to cancel the Temporary Residence Permit and apply for a 30-day tourist visa with zero entry to avoid problems.

Things to Know for X2 Visa Holders

X2 holders shall stay in China within the duration period as indicated on the visa, and it is not necessary for them to apply for the temporary residence permit. In case that they need to extend the X2 visa, please go to the local Exit and Entry Administration to handle this affair 30 days before the expiration date.

Working on X Visa Is Not Allowed

You are not permitted to work on the X type visa. But part-time work and internships off campus may be authorized. You should contact you university or employer after you have settled in China to see what can be arranged.

For foreign students who work in violation of Chinese regulations or beyond the prescribed scope of jobs or time limit, they shall be deemed unlawful employment and will probably have to stop or be expelled. 


Further Reading:

8 Tips for Filling Out Chinese Visa Application Form
Top 8 Reasons Why Your China Visa Gets Rejected
Student Group Tours
Student Travel Tips        

- Last modified on Sep. 04, 2019 -
Questions & Answers on China Student Visa
Asked by Hassane from CHINA | Sep. 22, 2019 06:13Reply
Temporary resident permit
Hello I have recently applied a visa application form to extend my temporary resident permit I had an appointement date to collect my passport but I missed that day.
What can I risk if I do not go get my passport on time ?
And what is the period of time I have to go collect my passeport ?
Asked by Eunice from NIGERIA | Sep. 19, 2019 01:19Reply
Do I need to present a medical or Police report for X2 visa
Answers (1)
Answered by Jenni from NIGERIA | Sep. 19, 2019 20:01

As far as I know, no.
Asked by Bashar from SYRIA | Sep. 17, 2019 21:39Reply
How much I should pay to finish the whole steps and get my recidence for 1 year?
Answers (1)
Answered by Thomas from USA | Sep. 17, 2019 23:46

The residence permit valid for 1 year costs about CNY 400.
Asked by Ruzel Grace from PHILIPPINES | Sep. 17, 2019 00:48Reply
X1 Visa Temporary Residence Permit
Is it possible to extend the days to apply for Temporary Residence Permit, I mean instead of 30 days, it will be 60 days or more?
Answers (2)
Answered by Evelyn from CANADA | Sep. 17, 2019 00:56

Nope, you have to do the residency permit within 30 days after your arrival.
Answered by Ruzel Grace from PHILIPPINES | Sep. 17, 2019 01:16

Is it possible if I apply for tourist visa first, then apply for student visa when I get there?
Asked by APPIAH ENOCH from GHANA | Sep. 15, 2019 11:23Reply
can i re-attest and apply with a previous attested transcript and testimonial
i travelled to china two years ago and i’m back home to reapply because my visa expired and i didn’t want to overstay.
i have done my medicals and have got my bank statements and all other documents ready?
i want to ask if i can re-attest and apply with the same transcripts and testimonials that i attested and applied with two years ago?
Answers (1)
Answered by Ada from SOUTH AFRICA | Sep. 16, 2019 18:03

yes, you can
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