When traveling to China, a visa is always required. The easiest option is to apply for a visa in your home country before you leave. But there is an alternative available: you can get your China visa in Hong Kong. This is very handy when you make the decision to visit China while already traveling abroad.
Getting a visa for China is actually very easy in Hong Kong. There are two ways to get your visa: apply yourself at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or have a visa service agent do if for you.
Option 1 : Do it yourself
Go to the “Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.” This is the cheapest option, but expect to wait in line for a while. You’ll have to fill in two forms (A and B) and bring a colored passport photo.
7th Floor, Lower Block, China Resources Building
No.26, Harbour Road, Wanchai, Hong Kong SAR
Easiest way to get there is to take the MTR to Wanchai station or take a cab. All cab drivers know this place so if you say “26 Harbour Road China Visa” they will understand.
Monday to Friday (except Hong Kong public holidays,)
Three Day Service
Single Entry Visa HK$150 (USD19)
Double Entry Visa HK$220 (USD28)
Two Day Service HK$150 (USD19)
24hr Service HK$250 (USD32)
See their website for more info.
Option 2 : Use a visa service agent
You can also apply at one of the many visa agents. Advantages are less waiting in line and you don’t have to fill in the forms yourself. Drop off your passport and pick it up when it’s done. Of course, it’s more expensive.
The one that I found very reliable and fast is Sunrise International Travel.
Room 4008, 40th Floor, China Resources Building
No. 26 Harbour Road, Wanchai, H.K.
TEL:(852) 2890 9698
FAX:(852) 2895 3892
You need to enter the white building along the main road, just around the corner from the entrance to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Go up the escalator and take the elevator to the 40th floor. Turn right twice to find the office on your left.
8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Monday-Friday)
10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. (Saturday)
Single Entry Visa HK$350 (USD45)
Double Entry Visa HK$450 (USD58)
24 h Service: HKD$300
Same day Service: HKD$900
The only thing you need to bring is a passport. Passport photo can be taken on the spot for a small fee.
China uses a “tit for tat” policy for pricing visas. This means they charge the same as what the applicant’s country charges for a Chinese national. Expect to pay more than the standard rate if you are from one of the following countries:
1. U.S.A. 2. Brazil 3. United Kingdom 4. Belarus 5. Panama 6. Ukraine 7. Uzbekistan 8. Kazakhstan 9. Armenia 10. Iran 11. Ecuador 12. Angola 13. Ethiopia14. Congo 15. Gabon 16. Cameroon 17.Cote D’Ivoire 18.Macedonia 19.Bolivia 20.Venezuela 21.Chile
Changes in policy
China changes their visa policy quite frequently! Although I will try to keep the information updated, the best way to make sure the information is correct is to call the respective offices.
Special Economic Zones
Some parts of China (the so called Special Economic Zones) can be visited by visa on arrival. This is true for Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Hainan and Shanghai. Conditions apply and policies can change so make sure to check before you arrive. See for more information the China Travel Guide