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Since the 72/144-hour visa-free transit policy was introduced in China, the number of applicable countries and ports have been growing

However, many foreigners are still confused about it. They have come up with many questions, including the most frequently asked ones: Can I enjoy the policy? How long can I stay, and where? Let’s take a look at the policy in detail.

Who is eligible for the 72/144-hour visa exemption (Total of 53 countries)?

Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Monaco, Belarus, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar

 

What are the applicable ports? And what are the areas open to travel?

➀ Ports for 144-hour visa exemption and areas open to travel

 

➁ Ports for 72-hour visa exemption and areas open to travel

What do I need to show the immigration officer for inspection while applying for 72/144-hour visa-free transit?

A foreign passenger eligible for the transit should provide the immigration officer with a valid passport or other international travel document and onward ticket to a third country (region) with confirmed date and seat within 72/144 hours upon arrival, as well as arrival/departure cards filled out in detail, and should be ready to answer any questions raised by immigration officers.

 

When do the 72/144 hours of visa-free stay start?

After confirming his/her qualification for 72/144-hour visa-free transit, the immigration inspection station will issue the foreign passenger a temporary entry permit. Then from 00:00 of the next day upon his/her arrival in China, he/she can stay in the designated areas without a Chinese visa for 72/144 hours.

 

The State Council English website launched a query page to make things easier.

http://app.www.gov.cn/govdata/html5/2018/visafreetransit/pc/index.html

You only need to enter your country and the entry port in China, and click the search button, to see:

Applicable visa-free policy 

Areas open to travel 

Entry and exit ports 

 

 

[News in Brief]: The measure of 72-hour Transit Visa Exemption for Foreign Nationals for citizens from 53 countries destined for a third country (region) with booked connecting flight goes into at the port of entry of the Baiyun Airport of Guangzhou. During the visa exemption period, the passenger is allowed to move around within the administration precincts of Guangdong province.

Q: What requirements foreigners have to meet to apply for the 72-hour transit visa exemption at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport?

A: (1) Citizens from the 45 countries under the 72-hour Transit Visa Exemption Program (The origins and destinations of travelers are not limited to such 45 countries); (2) Foreign nationals with valid international travel documents and air ticket for a connecting flight with confirmed date of flight and seat for a third country (region) leaving China at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport within 72 hours; (3) The range of staying during the visa exemption is limited to the administrative precincts of Guangdong Province.

Q: What 53 are the countries?

A: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Monaco, Belarus, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar

Q: Is the 72-hour limit in the “72-hour Transit Visa Exemption” calculated by starting with the entry time?

A: No. The 72-hour limit is calculated by starting with zero hour the next day of the traveler’s entry. For example, if a traveler enters China at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport on August 1, 2013, the visa exemption limit for entry is calculated by starting with 00:00 on August 2, 2013. The traveler can leave China before 23:59 on August 4, 2013.

Q: How can a foreigner who meets the requirements for the 72-hour transit visa exemption apply for it?

A: A foreigner that meets the requirements may submit his/her request to the airline company that carries him/her to Guangzhou, which shall make the application to the immigration of Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport that shall grant a temporary entry of a passenger meeting the requirements for transit visa exemption upon verification. Besides, a foreigner that does not apply for the 72-hour transit visa exemption before entry may submit his/her application to the immigration before completion of the immigration after arrival at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport.

Q: Can a traveler apply for the 72-hour transit visa exemption when no exit air ticket is bought at the time of entry but he or she plans to purchase the air ticket for a third country leaving within 72 hours after entry?

A: According to the requirements, a foreigner applying for the 72-hour transit visa exemption must hold the air ticket for a connecting flight with confirmed date of flight and seat for a third country (region) leaving China at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, i.e., the exit air ticket is already in place before entry. Therefore, this facilitation measure does not apply to a foreigner that does not have a confirmed air ticket for a connecting flight leaving within 72 hours.

Q: Does this measure apply to a foreigner coming to Guangzhou from a certain country (region) with a confirmed air ticket for flying back to the same country (region) where he or she comes from within 72 hours with confirmed date of flight and seat?

A: According to the requirements, the 72-hour transit visa exemption measure is for a foreigner connecting through Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport for a third country or region. Therefore this measure does not apply to a passenger whose destination country is the country where he or she comes from.

Q: Can a foreigner leave Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport for another Chinese city after getting the 72-hour transit visa exemption?

A: He or she may leave for the city in Guangdong and is not allowed to leave Guangdong.

Q: Can a passenger enter China at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport and then leave from the Guangzhou East Railway Station within 72 hours?

A: This measure is currently available at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport only, which means that the travelers who enjoy the 72-hour transit visa exemption policy are only permitted to enter and leave China at Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport.

Q: What should be done in case a foreigner who has the 72-hour transit visa exemption cannot leave China within 72 hours due to some special reason after entry?

A: In case of special need to stay in the administrative precincts of Guangdong Province longer than 72 hours due to force majeure or of exceeding the permitted scope of stay, a passenger should apply for the relevant visa to the exit-entry administration department of the municipal public security authorities of Guangdong.

Q: If I have more questions concerning the immigration, how can I ask for an answer?

A: You may call the 24-hour inquiry hotline of Baiyun Station of Exit and Entry Frontier Inspection: +86 20 36066950 or 24-hour inquiry hotline of Guangzhou General Station of Exit and Entry Frontier Inspection: +86 20 32090088.