Things you need to know about Visa Application


How to Apply

Foreign students studying in China or participating exchange programs must apply for a visa through the Chinese Embassy or Consulate. The visa types are as follows:

X1 Visa: long-term study (more than 180 days)

X2 Visa: short-term study (no more than 180 days)

F Visa: for those who go to China to engage in exchange, visit, study and other activities

L Visa: Traveling to China or participating in summer (winter) camps

Please make sure to apply for a study visa (X visa) for studying in China. The X1 visa is a long-term convertible visa and must be converted into a residence permit within 30 days after entering China. The X2 visa is a short-term non-convertible visa. A holder of such visa is only allowed to go to China and back once and stay in China for 180 days at most. Therefore, if you will study in China for more than 180 days, you need to apply for X1 visa (residence permit); if less than 180 days, you need to apply for X2 visa.

Following materials are needed when applying for an X visa:

1.Basic Documents:

(1) Passport

Original passport with at least six months of remaining validity and blank visa pages, and a photocopy of the passport”s data page and the photo page if it is separate.

(2) Visa Application Form and Photo

One completed Visa Application Form with a recently-taken color passport photo (bare-head, full face) against a light background attached

(3) Proof of legal stay or residence status (applicable to those not applying for the visa in their country of citizenship)

If you are not applying for the visa in the country of your citizenship, you must provide the original and photocopy of your valid certificates or visa of stay, residence, employment or student status, or other valid certificates of legal staying provided by the relevant authorities of the country where you are currently staying.

(4) Photocopy of previous Chinese passports or previous Chinese visas (applicable to foreign citizens those who were Chinese citizens and have obtained foreign citizenship)

If you are applying for a Chinese visa for the first time, you should provide your previous Chinese passport held and a photocopy of its data page.

If you have obtained Chinese visas before and want to apply for a Chinese visa with a renewed foreign passport that does not contain any Chinese visa, you should present the photocopy of the previous passport”s data page and the photo page if it is separate, as well as the previous Chinese visa page. (If your name on the current passport differs from that on the previous one, you must provide an official document of name change.)


2. Supporting Documents

X1 Visa

(1) Original and photocopy of the Admission Letter issued by a school or other entities in China.

(2) Original and photocopy of “Visa Application for Study in China” (Form JW201 or Form JW202).

We kindly remind you that:

Holders of X1 Visa shall, within 30 days from the date of their entry, apply to the exit/entry administrations of public security organs under local people”s governments at or above the county level in the proposed places of residence for foreigners” residence permits.

When you retrieve your passport and visa, please make ensure that the embassy returns you’re the original acceptance letter and forms JW201/JW202. These documents are important materials that you will submit to the police station when applying for a residence permit after arriving in China.

X2 Visa

(1)Original and photocopy of the admission letter issued by the Chinese institution.

For more details, please visit the following website:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China:

China Consular Service:

Chinese Visa Application Service Center:

* An international student must hold a Study Visa (X visa). If a Tourist visa ( L Visa) holder wants to convert it to study visa after he/she enters the country, he/she may be required to re-enter after leaving China. Therefore, this practice is not recommended.

Previous articlePreparatory Courses for Studying in China
Next articleConfucius Institute scholarship


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here