Young Pioneer Tours

Visa free travel scheme to China

As of the 1st July 2024, the People’s Republic of China has continued to expand on their visa free travel scheme to China. This scheme is announced in order to further expand and grow the tourism sector of the country. The following 16 nationalities have been granted visa free access to enter China as a tourist for up to 15 days valid until the end of 2025.

The countries included on the new 15 day visa free scheme include:

Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Spain and Switzerland.

Other countries previously allowed visa exempt travel to China include:

For up to 90 days: Albania, Armenia, San Marino

For up to 60 days: Mauritius

For up to 30 days: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Dominica, Ecuador, Fiji, Georgia, Grenada, Kazakhstan, Maldives, Malaysia, Mongolia, Qatar, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Suriname, Thailand, Tonga

This now means that nationals of 41 countries can travel to China visa free. The nation was previously known for its strict visa policy, which required considerable documentation and planning in order to visit the history-laden nation. 

What does this mean if you are from a visa free country?

This means travellers from the nations above can now join our private or group tours to China or to North Korea even easier than before. While we typically require all travellers to book a tour to North Korea a month in advance in order to process your DPRK visa, we can now arrange tours to China for travellers from these 41 nations at any time. There is no longer any requirement to submit details such as employment or travel history. 

Can travellers land at any airport or border crossing in mainland China with just their passport?

Yes, you can arrive with just your passport in hand. There’s no need to apply for anything beforehand.

Their passport should have at least six months of validity left before it expires, according to the Chinese embassy website.

Do the days count from the day of arrival in or departure to China?

It counts from your first day of arrival to mainland China. Travellers will have until midnight on the 15th / 30th / 60th / 90th day to depart according to the category they fall under.

How many times can I enter China using the visa free stays?

As many times as you want. There’s no limitations

What if I want to extend my stay whilst in mainland China?

To extend your stay you’ll need to visit the Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau that handles all visa applications for foreigners. This can be a rather lengthy and costly experience.

The easiest method we recommend is to exit China and to re-enter. One of the most popular locations to do so is from Guangdong province into Hong Kong or Macau.

Are there any restrictions on where I can travel in China? Can I visit Tibet or Xinjiang?

Tibet and Xinjiang are open for foreigners to visit, but there are travel restrictions applied.

Foreign tourists aren’t able to gain entry into Tibet unless they are booked on an arranged tour authorised by the Tibet Travel Administration. YPT can arrange your travel to Tibet.

As for Xinjiang, foreigners do not need a special permit for travel as part of a permitted tour group. However, the freedom of movement is more restricted compared to most other parts of China.

What if I am not from one of the visa exempt countries?

Don’t worry! It is still relatively easy to travel to China with YPT. You may be eligible to use the Chinese transit visa which allows you to stay in China up to 144 hours (6 days) or you can apply for your single or double entry Chinese tourist visa from your nearest Chinese Visa Application centre or Chinese embassy.

Is China safe to travel to?

Despite numerous warnings from international governments regarding travel to China, we find it to be one of the most safe and welcoming destinations. 

The main risk of traveling to China is getting detained as a result of political tensions between China and Western nations. When traveling on private or group tours, the risk of any sort of detention or questioning is massively reduced, as with our tours you will be accompanied by a YPT tour leader. 

Particularly, this new move towards making China more accessible for many hints towards a more pro-tourism government directive. As the country tries to draw in even more tourists, we anticipate that the country will become safer for tourists.

How can I visit China?

We offer multiple tours to China each year. Additionally, we can easily arrange private tours to the country! Contact us for more information.

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