Visa Guidelines - The People’s Republic of China
The guidelines below apply to students studying in China for a period of a semester up to one academic year. Please contact Education Abroad if you have any questions.
A visa is a legal document from immigration authorities which shows you have permission to enter the country for a certain amount of time. In the case of the People’s Republic of China (China), a visa permits foreigners to enter the country for 90 days on a visa.
Is a Visa Required for US Citizens?
- Yes! US Passport Holders are required to apply for a visa in order to enter China
- If you are studying in China for less than 6 months, you will need an F Visa
- If you are studying in China for more than 6 months, you will need an X Visa
- To learn more about the X Visa, visit the Chinese Embassy Visa Page.
- If you are not a US passport holder, you can click here to see if you need a visa to enter China based on your nationality.
- Cost: $140
- The Chinese Visa Office requires all information to be entered completely and accurately by computer, so make sure you have Adobe Reader when completing your Visa application.
- Applicants need to provide the telephone number and address of their sponsoring institution in China. This information is provided in your study abroad admissions materials.
- The visa processing fee is $140, can be made either by credit card (Visa or Mastercard only) or Money Order, and is paid upon collection of your Chinese visa.
List of requirements
- A valid US passport + 1 photocopy of information page
- Visa Application Form (Form V.2013)
- Must be completed by computer
- Part 2.1: Select either “Short-term study” or “Long-term study”
- Part 2.2: Select the number of entries or times you plan to leave China and re-enter during your study abroad.
- Part 2.7: List the name and contact information of the person who will support you financially while abroad
- Part 2.8: List the address of your sponsoring Chinese host institution
- 1 (one) recent photos in US passport photo format
- Copy of University of Maryland Student ID Card: applicable to out-of-state students
- Invitation letter issued by sponsoring institution in China, containing:
- Information on the applicant (full name, gender, date of birth, etc.)
- Information on the planned visit (purpose of visit, arrival and departure dates, place(s) to be visited, relations between the applicant and the inviting entity or individual, financial source for expenditures)
- Information on the sponsoring institution (name, contact telephone number, address, official stamp, signature of the legal representative or the inviting individual)
- Photocopy of previous Chinese passports or previous Chinese visas (IF APPLICABLE)
To begin, complete your F Visa Application Form, print it and assemble it together with your Invitation letter other required documentation (see above). You will then to need to submit your application to the Visa Office of the Chinese Embassy.
Visa courier services are available to help you save time by depositing your visa application and retrieve your visa and passport on your behalf. However, you will need to pay a fee for this additional service. Education Abroad does not recommend any particular courier service.
If you choose to submit your application in person, an appointment is NOT required and walk-in service is available during office hours. The Visa Office will not accept any mail-in, online or fax applications. The processing time is 4 (four) business days, and you will be able to pick up your passport with visa on the date printed on your Pick-up slip, unless otherwise notified by the Visa Office. The Visa Office does not provide mailing services. You will pay the visa fee once your application is processed and approved.
The standard processing fee is $140 when you go to collect your passport and visa, and is paid by credit card (Visa or Mastercard only) or Money Order.