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China Work Visa (Z)

Chinese work visa, or Z visa, is issued to foreigners who are going to China for a paid job offer or to undertake commercial entertainment performances in China.

How long is the duration of stay of Chinese Z visa?

This Z visa itself only allows a stay duration of 30 days from the date of arrival in China, during which time you and your employer must seek a Temporary Residence Permit for the duration of your contract, to a minimum of 90 days and a maximum of 5 years. Note that usually the work visa is a single entry, with the duration of stay being 000, which means the duration is to be determined by the Temporary Residence Permit you get after entering China.

What is the age limit for Z visa application?

The age limit is 18 - 60 for all applicants. However, there is some flexibility in these requirements, so if you are not in this age range and can find a willing employer, they may still be able to obtain approval for you.

China Work Visa Requirements & Documents

1. Passport

- Applicant's valid actual passport with at least six months before expiry and at least one blank page left in it.

2. Application Form

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

3. Recent Photo

- One recent passport standard photo affixed to the Application Form.

4. Work Permit

- Applicants need to submit one of the following work permits obtained through their employers in China:
a. Foreigners Work Permit - issued by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security of the PRC.
b. Registration Certificate of Resident Representative Offices of enterprises of foreign countries (regions) - issued by Chinese authorities of industrial and commercial administration.
c. An approval document for commercial performances - issued by the Chinese government authorities for cultural affairs.
d. Invitation Letter to Foreigners for Offshore Petroleum Operations - issued by National Offshore Oil Corporation.

5. Supporting Documents

Applicants might be required to submit supporting documents on a case-by-case basis. This could include a medical form and criminal history check, which has been notarized and authenticated. If you are not required to submit the medical form, you still need to take a medical check when applying for the Temporary Residence Permit in China. Download Physical Examination Record for Foreigner to check the tests you need to go through.

How to Apply for China Work Visa

You can go to the Chinese embassy, consulates or other diplomatic missions in person for application. You can also have a friend, a travel agency or visa agency to act on your behalf. There is no need to make an appointment. Mailed applications are not acceptable. If there are Chinese Visa Application Centers (CVASC) in your country, you can go there to submit the application; mailed applications are accepted in some CVASCs.

China Employment Visa Fees

The fee is the same as the fee for other types of Chinese visa. Generally speaking, Chinese embassy or consulate only issue single entry Z visa to aliens, thus we only list single entry Z visa fees for some major countries here. For more details, please click China Visa Fees.

US Citizens Canadian Citizens UK Citizens Australian Citizens
USD 140 CAD 142 GBP 151 AUD 109.5

Processing Time

It usually takes 4 working days for processing. For example, you submit application on Monday and then you can pick up your visa on Thursday. An additional US$ 30 is charged for one working day processing, and US$ 20 for 2-3 working day processing.

Which visa applies to accompanying family members of Z visa applicants?

Accompanying family members should apply for an S visa by submitting invitation letter from the relative with work Z visa in China and a 'proof of relationship', i.e. their marriage certificate for a spouse, or birth certificate for a child.

Can foreign domestic helpers work legally in mainland China?

Foreign domestic helpers are not able to work in China, indicating that almost all domestic helpers currently working in China are illegal. Some agencies help them to apply for multiple entry tourist L visa or noncommercial visit F visa and then they use it to enter and exit regularly. Despite this, do not take a risk by working as a domestic helper or employing one to avoid being fined.

Note: The most common employment in China for foreigners is teaching English for which the minimum qualifications are stated as having English as a first language and having at least a Bachelors degree and two year teaching experience.

Further Reading:

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

- Last modified on Dec. 30, 2019 -
Questions & Answers on China Work Visa
Asked by Aamir from INDIA | Jan. 19, 2020 09:43Reply
Z Visa
I'm studying in Wuhan, China and I'm already approved by one of the china company to get work visa. I searched job off-role campus. My qualification is B.Tech from India. Do i have to go back to my country for some verifications or clearance or any notarization to solve out this work visa problem or can it be done here in china to convert my X1 visa to Z visa?
Asked by Whyworry from GHANA | Jan. 16, 2020 00:35Reply
Hi I had a warning on a one day stay in china after my visa expired due to plane issues and I’m currently applying for my z visa will it affect it?
Answers (2)
Answered by Zack from GHANA | Jan. 16, 2020 18:45

Don't worry, it won't affect your Z visa application.
Answered by Whyworry from GHANA | Jan. 16, 2020 22:26

Thanks sir
Asked by Philela from SOUTH AFRICA | Jan. 15, 2020 21:32Reply
Z Visa

I am a South African citizen and I would to apply to work in China as a teacher. How much does a Z visa cost for a South African, how long does it take and what is the difference between regular express and rush.

Thank You
Answers (1)
Answered by Andison from SOUTH AFRICA | Jan. 16, 2020 18:35

The cost is ZAR 800. If you use express or rush service, you need to pay more.

It normally takes four working days for the visa processing.

Regular service is slow and cheap, express service is quick and expensive, ruch service is the quickest but most expensive.
Asked by özlem from TURKEY | Jan. 15, 2020 05:46Reply
Am I eligible for Z visa?
Hi, I am both Turkish and UK citizen living in Turkey, and i only use my UK passport. I was selected as an intern for an hotel in Beijing, I'll be there for 6 months for getting some training about the hotel structure and hospitality. I worked in Turkey for appx. 1 year but this will be my first visit to PRC. The consulate of China in İstanbul told me that I should apply the visa from UK consulate of China. What should I Do? Is Z visa right for me or should i apply to M visa?
Answers (1)
Answered by Pauline from UNITED KINGDOM | Jan. 15, 2020 19:40

If the consulate told you to apply for visa from UK, then you have to go back to UK to do the application. I think Z visa is more suitable for you.
Asked by Mae from PHILIPPINES | Jan. 10, 2020 19:24Reply
How long Z Visa process?
How long to process the Z visa after i get approved my working permit? Is it possible that your Z Visa was disapproved even you got working permit approved?
Answers (1)
Answered by Alan from CANADA | Jan. 12, 2020 18:36

After you submit the visa application, it normally take four working days to process the Z visa. Even if you have got the working permit, it's possible that you Z visa will be rejected, but the possibility is not big.
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