Step by Step Procedures on How to Get a Student Visa in China 

Written by Michael Nz. on May 1, 2022

8 min read
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China, as a leader in economic growth, has become an attractive place for students from Europe, the United States, and other parts of Asia to pursue a degree abroad. This has caused these students to search for how to obtain a student visa in China. This article will address this.

International students will receive a rigorous yet comprehensive education, and their career prospects will be enhanced. In addition to excellent teaching, you will be immersed in Chinese culture, which will undoubtedly broaden your life prospects and personal goals.

However, once you have been accepted to a Chinese university, you will need to apply for a China student visa.

Types of Student Visas in China

International students must apply for one of the following visas before traveling to China, depending on the length of their studies:

  • F visa for students studying in China for less than six months.
  • X visa for students who intend to study in China for a period of more than six months.

You have 30 days after your arrival to apply for a Residence Permit for Foreigners, which will allow you to stay in China for the duration of your studies. You can apply for a residence permit at the entry and exit administration division of the local public security bureau.

How does the student visa in China work?

Citizens of the European Union (EU) and other countries (for example, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, etc.) can apply through the CVASC (China VISA Application Service Center). If your home country does not have a CVASC office, you can apply at the nearest Chinese embassy or consulate.

Apply in person or with the help of a travel agency or visa agency if you are unable to come in person. Since mail-in applications are not accepted, most Chinese embassies will reject them.

Most embassies and consulates do not require an appointment. You can visit the visa office during business hours, but it is generally best if you arrive before 11:30 am If you apply through CVASC, you may need to schedule an appointment online on the website.

You should apply for a China study visa approximately one month before your expected date of arrival, but no earlier than three months before that date. All Chinese embassies are usually very efficient, with visa processing times of a week or less. However, to avoid delays or problems, we recommend that you start the visa application process as soon as possible.

Requirements or Eligibility Criteria for the Student Visa in China

When applying for a student visa in China, you will need a variety of documentation. Most of them are-

  • Authentic passport (with at least one blank page and valid for at least 6 months after the intended date of departure from China)
  • completed application form
  • Original passport size photograph and a copy of the acceptance letter from the university
  • Evidence of payment of the visa application fee (about 66 USD)
  • Photocopies of previous Chinese passports (only applicable to foreign citizens who were once Chinese citizens and have obtained foreign citizenship)
  • Proof of legal status in the country where you apply for the visa, such as a residence permit (if you apply for the visa outside your country of origin)
  • Plane tickets and hotel reservations must be copied.
  • Applicants over the age of 18 who intend to study in China for more than 180 days must provide a valid physical examination record.
  • You may be required to provide additional documentation depending on your nationality.
  • Indian citizens are eligible to apply for a student visa to China. The Chinese Embassy in India issues student visas for Chinese citizens.
  • If the applicant has been invited by a Chinese educational institute, they must submit the invitation letter together with the application form.
  • Indian citizens with an Indian passport can apply for a student visa to China. However, the passport must be valid for at least six months from the intended date of travel to China.
  • The applicant must have a valid passport for at least six months from the date of travel.
  • Applicants who wish to extend the duration of their visa will need to leave China and reapply for the visa from their home country.

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Documents that will help you track your visa status

  • The number in a passport
  • Application identifier.
  • The applicant can check the status of his visa application on the website of the Chinese Embassy in India.
  • Once you have located the embassy website, you can track your visa application by providing your application number.
  • By submitting your name, date of birth, and application number, you will also be able to check the status
  • There is also an option to track China student visas from India through various portals by submitting your name (as it appears on the application form), date of birth, and passport number along with the application number.
  • After you submit your request, you will be given a tracking ID. This tracking ID will help you track your application through the embassy website.
  • Using a passport as a tracking device
  • If you applied through a Visa consultancy or service provider, you can track the status of your application by sending your passport number to the appropriate service provider.

Read this article: How to Get Korean Student Visa | step by step procedures

How long is the China student visa valid?

You cannot stay beyond the expiration date of your visa. We consider overstaying an offense, and you will face fines and deportation if you do. It is one of the basic requirements of the visa that you do not exceed your stay. You must leave the country before the specified date. If you want to stay longer in the country, you can apply for a visa extension or a new visa.

China student visa fees and cost

The fee for an X visa is the same as for any other type of Chinese visa. Since an X1 visa only allows one entry and Chinese embassies and consulates rarely issue multiple-entry X2 visas, we only list the single-entry and double-entry X visa fees for reference.

It should cost around $140 for a single ticket.

How to apply for a student visa in China?

So, because the China student visa application process takes place offline, the Chinese government has not taken action online. You can fill out the China student visa application form offline, and if the applicant is processing it on their own, they may need to submit the form to the embassy.

Since it is a delicate procedure, and any mistake can cause visa delays or denials, it is better to have it done by visa experts. In addition, a team of expert visa service providers can assist you throughout the visa process.

Guide to help you understand the China student visa application process

  • You need to complete the China student visa application form offline. To avoid further delays, the data on the application form must be filled in carefully and without major errors.
  • After completing the application form, the applicant must gather all the required documents as listed by the Chinese government.
  • After gathering the required documents, the applicant must submit the application form to the Chinese embassy at their own expense. However, if you want to avoid making mistakes, you can seek the help of experts.
  • They will not accept documents via email.
  • Before the embassy verification, the documents must be examined. Normally, the request takes at least four days to process.
  • International students must obtain JW201 and JW202 forms from the school where they intend to enroll.
  • The JW201 form is issued to international students receiving scholarships from the Chinese government.
  • While the JW202 form is issued to self-sponsored international students.
  • You can apply in person at the consular offices of Chinese embassies or consulates or at the China Visa Application Centers (CVASC).
  • Alternatively, if you are unable to travel personally, you may entrust someone else (eg friends, relatives), a travel agent, or a visa agency to act on your behalf. There is no need for a power of attorney.
  • Most Chinese embassies and consulates reject mail-in applications, but many CVASCs accept them.
  • Most embassies and consulates do not require an appointment. However, if you must apply to CVASC, you may need to schedule an appointment online through the CVASC website.

China Student Visa Processing Time

Document verification is essential to determine the time required for the visa process. It is essential to avoid making any major errors on the application form. The submission of documents is possible after thorough verification of the documents.

The application process for a China student visa could take at least four business days. Express service is available from the Chinese government. The express service could take at least two business days.

The normal processing time is four business days. If you need your visa sooner, rush and urgent services are available.

  • Express Service: Processing takes 2-3 business days; an additional $20 will be charged.
  • Expedited Service: 1 business day processing for an additional $30.

Can I get a China student visa without IELTS?

There are no language requirements to obtain a Chinese study visa. However, because most universities offer courses taught in English, proof of English language proficiency will be required during the application process.

Some of the most popular English tests accepted by Chinese universities are as follows:

  • PTE Academic

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During your interview at the Chinese embassy or consulate, you will also be asked to speak in one of the international languages; English is most likely the easiest and most convenient

Work while you study in China

You cannot work on the X visa. However, off-campus part-time jobs and internships may be allowed. Once you have arrived in China, please contact your university or employer to see what arrangements we can make.

Foreign students who work in violation of Chinese regulations or beyond the prescribed scope of work or time limit will be considered illegal employees and likely to be detained or expelled.

Frequent questions

How long does a China student visa last?

X visas are generally issued on a single entry basis, are valid for three months, and do not have a maximum period of stay (ie, 000 days of stay). To avoid an illegal stay in China, student visa holders must apply for a residence permit at a local public security bureau within 30 days of entering the country.

Is a 10-year China visa still valid?

To be clear, all 10-year validity visas are still suspended and cannot be used to enter China, regardless of visa type. You can now apply if you have an expired residence permit. Since the COVID 19 pandemic, you will need to apply for a new/temporary Chinese visa to enter China.

Is it possible for me to stay in China after I graduate?

Foreign citizens can obtain work permits in China in two ways. You may be eligible for a work permit if you have a qualifying bachelor’s degree and two years of overseas experience. To be exempt from the required experience, you must have a master’s degree or higher from a Chinese university.

Will international students be allowed to study in China?

Yes. International students can study in China.

Is it possible to get a student visa in China?

You should apply for a China study visa approximately one month before your expected date of arrival, but no earlier than three months before that date. All Chinese embassies are usually very efficient, with visa processing times of a week or less.


China has welcomed the innovations. However, it has also invited investors and students to join the race for development. Not surprisingly, the number of students visiting the country for educational purposes is growing.

Getting a China student visa from anywhere in the world has never been difficult, but it has never been easy either. The following guide above will help you understand the whole process of getting a China student visa.

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