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Apply for a visa to travel to China
Would you like to take a trip to China? You will need to have a visa before arriving to the country.
The process to get this precious key requires to have both well planned your stay and to collect many
supporting documents.

The visa to stay in China
Before leaving, you will have to apply to the visa center. Since April 2019, the appointment must be
booked online, on the website of the China Visa Application Center (CVASC). On this website, you
will also have to fill in and print the forms that will include your file, attached to your several
supporting documents. The L visa, which is the other name of the tourist visa for China, is available
in many countries, including France and Belgium.

Getting your travel authorization
How to apply for online travel authorization to China?

If you wish to apply for a visa by yourself, you will first have to choose the city where you will send your application from. In France, it can be filed with the CVASC in Paris or Marseille but also in Strasbourg and Lyon. You will then need to gather several mandatory documents and to book an appointment in order to fill your online authorization on the CVASC website. Answer accurately and in detail the several questions in order to increase your chances to get a visa. You will be able to submit your file during your appointment.

You can also get your visa for China with the help of an agency. If you need to get it quickly or if you are afraid of forgetting documents while organizing your files on your own, this is the best solution. Your agency will get you an e-visa for China and will ensure that the several mandatory documents are as they should be and will assure you to get your permit.
Hong Kong and Macao processes differ. Indeed, if you wish to stay there for less than 90 days, you will not need a visa to travel to these two regions. In this case, you will only need to present your passport upon arrival in the country as long as its validity date last at least 6 months after the date of departure from the country.

What are the deadlines?

The application process takes approximately one week or 5 working days once your application is done. However, it is better to make the request at least one month before your departure because in case of high traffic or missing documents in your file, your visa could be delayed. You will then have to pick up your visa at the center where your application was submitted.
If you need to get your visa within a very short period of time, there is also an express procedure whose application deadlines are only 2 to 3 working days. You will need to pay additional costs for this procedure but it will considerably shorten the application deadlines.

Validity of the visa for China

The validity of the document begins when it is issued and last for up to 90 days. You therefore have 3 months to enter China from the moment you get your visa. When you arrive in China, you will have the opportunity to stay in China for up to 30 days.
There is also a double entry tourist visa that allows you to spend 30 days in China twice over a period of 3 months. You will have to leave the country after 29 days, and then to come back again for 30 days.

If you finally want to extend your stay beyond the validity of the document, it is possible to make a request once there at the Public Security Bureau. You will be able to get up to 30 days of visa extension.

What are the conditions to get the visa?

There are several conditions for getting a Chinese visa. You will first have to apply from France or the country where you live, so you will need to apply for a visa before arriving there. You will also need a passport that is valid for more than 6 months after the day you leave the country. You will also need a round-trip flight to prove that you will leave the country. Finally, you will be asked to provide proof of hotel reservation for the duration of your stay. Remember that with a tourist visa, you are not allowed to work or study there. You have to meet these specific conditions in order to get a visa for China and to be allowed to stay there.

Good to know when traveling with children in China

In order to travel with children in China, you will need to apply for a visa for them. They must have a passport valid for more than 6 months after they leave the country. Underaged people who do not travel with their parents or only with one of them must be in possession of an authorization to leave the country, signed by both parents. This goes with a photocopy of both parents’ identity cards.

Chinese Embassy in Paris, France

Feel free to visit the French administration’s website for information on traveling abroad with a child.

  • Directions: 25 Rue de Bassano, 75008 Paris
  • Telephone: (+33) 1 40 70 04 01
  • Fax number: (+33) 1 47 20 20 63 28
  • Email: pariscentre[at]
  • Website:
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday, except on French or Chinese public holidays. From 9 am to
    3 pm for file submissions (appointment required) and from 9 am to 4 pm for withdrawals.

Contact the French Embassy in China

Keep the contact details of the French Embassy in China during your trip. They may be especially
useful in case of a problem, such as if you lose or have your passport stolen on the spot, for example.

  • Directions: 60, Tianze Lu, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100600
  • Telephone: (00.86.10)
  • Fax number: (00 86 10)
  • Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8:30 to 12:00 and from 14:00 to 17:30
  • Website:


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