Do you feel at a loss after getting off the plane? To settle down in a completely strange city is not an easy thing. All foreigners entering China, within 48 hours have to register the Temporary Residence Record which is part of China’s domestic police force. For the visa extending or renewing before expiration, expats have to go to the Immigration Bureau to submit the renewal application.

Most foreigners must have a visa to come to China. You should get visas from Chinese embassies or consulates-general in their home countries before they come to China.

Citizens of countries which have mutual visa exemption agreements with China don't need a visa.

Port Visas

Under some circumstances, foreigners can get a port visa for a maximum of three months in cases of urgent need and lack of time.

Foreigners may apply for a port visa for one of the following reasons:

• Being invited at short notice by the Chinese side to attend a trade fair in China;

• Being invited to China to enter a bid or to formally sign an economic or trade contract;

• Coming to China under contract for supervision over export shipment, import commodity inspection or checking the completion of a contract;

• Being invited to install equipment or make rush repairs;

• Coming to China at the request of the Chinese side for settling claims;

• Being invited to China for scientific or technological consulting services;

• A last-minute replacement or addition, approved by the Chinese side, to a delegation or group that has been invited and has already obtained visas for traveling to China;

• Visiting a patient in a critical condition or making funeral arrangements;

• Being a person in immediate transit who, because of force majeure, is unable to leave China by original aircraft within 24 hours or has to leaveChina by other means of transport;

• Being an invitee who does not have time to apply for a visa to a Chinese agency abroad but holds letters or telegrams from designated competent authorities approving the application for a visa at port visa agencies;

Foreign journalists, officials, public affairs passport holders and diplomatic passport holders cannot apply for port visas.

Ordinary Visas

Ordinary visas shall be marked with different Chinese phonetic letters and issued to different foreigners according to their stated purposes of visit to China:

• Visa D for foreigners who are to reside permanently in China;

• Visa Z for foreigners who come to China to take up posts or employment and for their accompanying family members;

• Visa X for foreigners who come to China for study, advanced studies or job-training for a period of six months or more;

• Visa F for foreigners who are invited to China on a visit or on a study, lecture or business tour, for scientific-technological or cultural exchanges, for short-term refresher course or for job-training, for a period not more than six months;

• Visa L for foreigners who come to China for sightseeing, visiting relatives more foreigners on a sightseeing trip to China;

• Visa G for foeigners passing through China;

• Visa C for train attendants, air crew members and seamen operating international services, and their accompanying family members.

• Visa J-1 for resident foreign correspondents in China; Visa J-2 for foreign correspondents who make short reporting trips to China.

Foreigners holding visas D, Z, X, or J-1 shall, within 30 days of entry into China, obtain foreigners’ residence cards or foreigners’ temporary residence cards from the city or county public security bureau at the place of their residence. Foreigners’ residence cards are issued to those who stay in China for one year or more. Foreigners’ temporary residence cards are issued to those who stay less than one year in China. Foreigners holding visas F, L, G, C or J-2 don’t need to obtain residence certificates as long as they stay in China for the period prescribed in their visas (from Live in Shanghai).

Documents You Will Need to Bring

• Passport and Visa

• Extra passport sized photoes• Birth certificate (for kids)

• Marriage Certificate

• Children’s school records (for school)

• Diploma & Resume(for applying Work Permit)

• College degree / diploma (you’ll need it for a China resident permit)

• Drivers’ license (for obtaining a Chinese Driver License)

• Inventory of safe deposit box

• Iventory of everything in storage and shipment

• Medical Report (if any)

Visa and Registration

Permits application process after entry

• Medical Checking

• Work permit application

• Residence permit application

The above process will take around 20 working days. You may claim your shipment only after you obtain the work permit and residence permit.

Obtaining a Temporary Residence Permit

Foreigners are required to register their presence at their local police station immediately, within 48 hours upon your arrival, you need to bring your passport, your leasing agreement and the ID of the landlord to register at the local police station. The police station will issue you and your family the" Temporary Residence Permit", Any delay will cause a daily fine. Ad a hotel guest you will be registered by the hotel, the temporary permit is available upon request.

Please note that each time you change your accommodation location, you have to obtain a new Temporary Residence Permit within 24 hours.

Consulate Registration

In case you need help on passport issues, you may turn for help to your country’s Consulate aside from report to Immigration Bureau.

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