Monday, 27 May 2013

Getting a Tourist Visa - China

There has quite some changes with the current tourist visa requirements from the time I applied 3 years ago. It has gotten stricter.  I can't blame the Chinese government when  the number of Filipinos who previously entered China as tourists and never came back home has risen tremendously. I couldn't blame our fellas as well. China has a lot to offer that this country just continuously failed to provide. Well, I could continue with those 'frustrations'  but hey, this is about how to visit mainland China, legally. 

To easily sum it off, once the following documentations are complete, that Great Wall sticker visa is within reach.

I was given 30 days on my second, I had only 7 days on my first
  1. Passport with 6 months validity and blank pages. Also photocopies of 1st and last pages.
  2. Return air tickets or onward ticket.
  3. Hotel booking or letter of invitation from friends or relatives in China
  4. NBI clearance (travel abroad purpose), original
  5. Certificate of Employment, original, and stating SSS and TIN
  6. Latest ITR stamped by BIR for the last taxable year, original and photocopy
  7. Bank Certificate (used to be at least Php50,000 only) with at least an average daily balance (ADB) and current balance of Php100,000. It also should have been opened 6 months prior to visa application. A statement of account/passbook should also be attached detailing transactions for the last 6 months, original and photocopy.
  8. Completely filled out application form available at the embassy and affixed with a passport-sized photo

Visa fee of Php1,400 for Philippine passport holders, Php2,500 for US passports and Php1,700 for other foreign nationals payable upon releasing day before visa/passport is released.

Chinese embassy office is located at the 2nd floor of World Center, 330 Gil Puyat St (Buendia), Makati City (few buildings from Petron Megaplaza, not the World Trade Center at the corner of Buendia and Macapagal). 

Submission is up to 11AM Mondays to Fridays. Embassy personnel at the counter will advise if documents are incomplete and will hand it all back to you but if it's good, a slip will be given indicating when to obtain your passport/visa. One other challenging thing is the queuing (against travel agents and group applications) which will literally consume your time so if it is a concern, there are several travel agencies who can accommodate such for a minimal fee (as low as Php500).

Upon releasing day, get a number from the security or in-charge personnel (be sure it's for releasing) to line up to the cashier who will in turn issue another number that will be called for the then passport/visa release on the next window.

on my second application I only had to present a copy of this first visa I had and the stamped entry/exit
instead of COE, ITR, NBI and bank cert...So convenient!
Unless you are a citizen of Brunei, Japan and Singapore you don't need to go through all these. Further, if you are a citizen of Australia, Canada, EU, NZ, and US, you only need to submit the general requirements - passport with photocopies, completely filled-out application form, return tickets and hotel booking. This also applies to those who were previously issued a Chinese sticker visa otherwise, shall be treated first time applicants and complete the above listed documentary requirements.

I say my luck worked when I was able to apply as first-timer before it became this rigorous. And now I only had to photocopy the old visa with the proof of previous entry/exit along with the general requirements, sweet!

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About Dee

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I was born and raised attune with nature, grew up from the countryside and a strong believer in endless possibilities. I am drawn to adrenaline rush and was never a girly kind but I dig chick flix and plays some music. I started this site during a 6-month distressing/long sojourning away from the corporate world. I gathered all the travels I went and translated them into words. I am not fond of sharing details of my trip and thought looking at the photos I've effort-fully taken was enough. Yet to my amazement reading through it flashes back more wonderful memories like a gush of throwback Thursdays. This is also a good venue to practice writing and to connect. So, thank you for stumbling upon my corner. Sorry I can't update regularly but I hope you'd visit again as my journey continues, find some useful information here and most of all be inspired to go on adventures your own. See you on the road!