144-hour Visa-free Transit in Kunming
Who qualifies for the 144-hour visa-free transit? - List of 53 Countries
American Countries: US, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile
Oceania Countries: Australia, New Zealand
Schengen Agreement Countries: Austria, France, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland
Other European Countries: UK, Ireland, Russia, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Belarus, Monaco
Asian Countries: South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar
Areas Allowed to Stay
Currently, passengers transiting in Kunming are only allowed to move around in this city if they wish to enjoy the 144-hour visa-free transit. It means those who want to take a tour to Lijiang, Dali, Xishuangbanna, or other cities need to get a normal visa.
What Is an Eligible Route?
Departure Country A: → Kunming → The Third Country C
It indicates that:
1) Passengers can only stop in one mainland Chinese city, namely Kunming. Multiple domestic stops are not allowed;
2) Passengers need to enter Kunming from Country A and then leave for Country C. A and C should be different countries, which means they cannot return to the departure Country A immediately after the layover in Kunming.
Note that Country A and C can be foreign countries, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.
What Are the Required Documents?
1. Your passport, valid for not less than three months at the time of entry
2. A flight ticket to a third country with confirmed date and seat (standby flight ticket doesn’t work)
3. A visa to the third country if required
4. The Arrival / Departure Card
How to Apply for a 144-Hour Visa-Free Transit in 6 Steps
1. Inform the airline when boarding
2. Fill out an Arrival/ Departure Card
3. Apply for the 144-hour visa-free stay permit upon arrival
4. Claim your luggage
5. Go through the customs
6. Leave the airport
What Are the Eligible Transit Ports?
In Kunming, the 144-hour visa-free transit is only available at Changshui International Airport. It means you have to fly in and fly out. Land ports in Yunnan do not issue a 144-hour visa-free stay permit.
Inquiry No. of Changshui Airport: 0086-871-96566
What Can I Do in Kunming During the 144 Hours?
Tour around the Dianchi Lake
If the length of your stay is short, you can take a tour around Dianchi Lake, which is about 40 km (25 mi) from the airport. Choose one from the Grand View Park or Haigeng Park to take in the beauty of the lake. If your visit is during the period from October to March, you can see a wide range of migrant birds wintering in these parks. Yunnan Nationalities Village also lies near the lake, where you can appreciate the architecture and folk customs of 26 of China's ethnic groups.
Marvel at the Stone Forest
The Stone Forest, located in Shilin Yi Nationality Autonomous County of Kunming, is about 2 hours' drive from the airport. Here you can see many karst limestone formations created by nature, resembling caves, animals, and giant columns. Direct tourist buses between Changshui Airport and the scenic area are available, making it easy to arrange a day trip.
Take a photography tour to Dongchuan Red Land
Unless your flight schedule is tight, it's a great idea to take a two-day visit to the Dongchuan Red Land. Here swathes of bright red soil contrast with the colors of seasonal crops and plants and is often compared to an artist's palette overturned by God. Shutterbugs should not miss the chance to take a stopover tour in Dongchuan Red Land, especially when your visit is during late April to early May, late August to early September, or mid-November to December when the colors are most vibrant.
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one week later, I'm returning from Bangkok - Shanghai (6 hr layover) - US
would both of my layovers qualify for the visa free program? I understand I may be denied at shanghai due to the length of my layover.
Would this be possible?
So, you can choose between:
Vientiane - Kunming - Bangkok
Vientiane - Beijing - Bangkok
Please, keep in mind that in each case, the flights have to be nonstop.
I assume that your original itinerary is probably cheaper, but as least you still didn't buy your tickets and you can take a decision that will suite you best. By the way, there is no "144 hours visa", but 144 hours visa free transit (no visa, without visa)... It is necessary to use correct terminology to avoid any possible misunderstandings.
Please, could you write down you exact time beginning from your arrival in Shanghai until your departure from KM. Thanks.