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Shanghai Going to Adopt 144-Hour Visa-Free Policy

Published: Dec. 23, 2015

On December 21st, 2015, Bai Shaokang, the deputy mayor of Shanghai, declared at a press conference that Shanghai was about to implement a 144-hour visa-free transit policy. So far, the application has been approved by the State Council and is expected to be put into practice since January 30th, 2016. 

Highlights of the 144-Hour Visa-Free Transit Policy

Compared with the 72-hour free transit policy, the new program features more favorable highlights.

 Firstly, the allowed stay is extended to 144 hours, while the requirements remain the same as before. This allows passengers to arrange their travel plans more flexiblly and save a lot of trouble. For regular flyers and businessmen, this is really a great bonus.

 Secondly, the policy covers Hangzhou and Nanjing as well. In other words, visitors can enter and leave from any of the three cities.

 Thirdly, the transit port is not only limited to airports in Shanghai. It means that cruise ship and train passengers can also enjoy this policy.

Read details about the 72-Hour Visa-Free Transit

Background Information

According to the Shanghai Airport Immigration Inspection Office, since the implementation of the 72-hour visa-free stay policy in January 1st, 2013, more than 100 thousand foreigners have taken advantage of this facility. After three years, it proves to be a great success, propelling Shanghai forward as an international metropolis. To enhance the fruitful tryout, the government thus put forward a series of immigration measures, including the 144-hour visa-free transit policy and Green Card (Permanent Residency) bonus. Though not having been carried out yet, it is predicted that this scheme will gain favor of international travelers.

With the fast process of globalization, we can expect more and more steps in the future to lower the barriers between countries.

  • Questions & Answers on China Tourism News
    Asked by Shaj from INDIA | Mar. 25, 2019 09:07Reply
    Is double entry visa must for cruise starting and ending at Shanghai?
    HI we are from india , reaching at Beijing Airport and then go to Shanghai by train. From Shanghai go for a cruise up to Kahoshima ( Part of Japan) and return to Shanghai cruise port. Same day return flight to India from Beijing . The Visa issued by China embassy in Delhi is a single entry visa. Some one said double entry visa is must . Is it right? Or upon the return of the cruise can we apply for 24 hour transit visa from the Shanghai cruise port terminal , ?
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Alice from USA | Mar. 25, 2019 18:22

    Hi, it is available for you to apply for a 24 hour transit visa if you stay in China less than 24 hours in the return trip.
    Asked by catalina poblete from CHILE | Jan. 05, 2017 16:12Reply
    Hi!, I'm from Chile and i'm going to China in february. My rout is Shanghai-Beijing-Xi'an-Guilin-Hong Kong-Shanghai. BUT i've made a mistake in my visa application and requested only one entry (I didn't know that going to HK meant and exit from China). The Embassy of China in Chile, didn't let me repair my mistake so for all means purpose i will have a one entry china visa.

    So, my question is, when i'm leaving HK to Shanghai (where i will spend 3 days) can i apply (and where do i apply?) for this 144-Hour Visa-Free Policy cosidering that after shanghai i'm going back to Chile.

    Answers (1)
    Answered by Laurie from SWEDEN | Jan. 08, 2017 02:07

    Catlina, don't worry, after you visit Hong Kong, you can leave HK for Shanghai and then take the connect the flight to Chile, you qualify for the 144-hour free transit.
    Asked by Bernadette Mellor from UNITED KINGDOM | Dec. 19, 2016 04:00Reply
    do i qualify for 144 hour free transit policy
    Arrive in Shanghai on cruise ship, staying 3 nights in Shanghai then flying to UK via Dubai. Do I qualify?
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Laurie from AUSTRALIA | Dec. 19, 2016 18:35

    Hey Bernadette, as long as you enter Shanghai from a different country rather than Dubai, you qualify for the 144h free transit.
    Asked by Keith from USA | Nov. 11, 2016 19:21Reply
    72 hr visa free transit policy
    Hi Urgently. Didn't get the memo that Beijing has a different visa requirement than Hong Kong and Shanghai. Can I fly from US to PKG then, not violating the 72 hr visa free transit policy, travel from PKG to ICN, spend one night, then fly back to PKG, not violate the 72 hr visa free transit policy, then fly back home PKG to SJC.
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Machael from USA | Nov. 13, 2016 03:51

    Keith, you can fly from US to PKG and then fly to ICN within 72 hours, then you can fly back home to SJC with a stopover in Beijing. You are eligible for the 72h free transit.
    Asked by Niek from NETHERLANDS | Oct. 27, 2016 15:56Reply
    Ams Pvg hkg ams
    Does this ticket qualify for transit in sha?
    Answers (1)
    Answered by Mindy from AUSTRALIA | Oct. 30, 2016 02:11

    Niek, so you will fly from AMS to PVG and then to HKG before returning to AMS? If yes, this ticket qualifies for the free transit in Shanghai.
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