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As a foreign student who wants to live and study in China, you will need a Student Visa. This publication will provide you with relevant tips and information to obtain the visa but before that, there are things you should know.
When you look at how far China has come, one can’t help but agree that the country has firmly established itself as a prominent global player in trade, both as a leading supplier and as a thriving market. The quality of education has also ascended to the position where it can now be compared with other top countries.
In technology and manufacturing, they are inarguably one of the pioneers making the country a perfect place to learn irrespective of what course or training you are looking to get.
Aside from benefiting from quality education which is bound to help you become a better person, immersing yourself in the rich tapestry of Chinese culture can profoundly reshape your perspective and foster a positive outlook. Moreover, it will also give you a memory you are going to reminisce about for a very long time even after graduation.
1 Do I need a Resident Permit?
Aside from obtaining a student visa, you will also need to apply for a residence permit within 30 days of entering China. The residence permit grants you the right to live and study in China.
2 Types of China Student Visas
You can apply for one of the two types of student visas for China, depending on the length of your educational program. They are:
1. Visa X2 (Short term study)
The China student visa x2 is for international students who intend to study in China for not less than 6 months. This type of visa could be used for vocational training, Chinese language tutorials, or short or certificate courses.
The short-term study visa can also be extended but there must be a genuine reason to do so. If the reasons are satisfactory, the visa can be extended.
2. Visa X1 (Long term study)
The China student visa x1 is a long-term visa issued to international students who will be studying in China for more than 6 months. This type of student visa is usually tailored for undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral programs.
3 Requirements needed for a Chinese Visa
- An unconditional offer or admission confirmation from an accredited university in China.
- Evidence of sufficient money meant for the cost of education, accommodation, and basic expenses for at least one academic year.
- The visa processing fee, which is to be paid to the embassy or consulate.
4 What is the cost of the China Visa application?
The cost of a China student visa will depend on your nationality. The fee ranges between ¥433 and ¥1,015.
Below is the fee you are to pay for the Visa:
- US Citizens: ¥1,006.69
- Canadian Citizens: ¥558
- UK Citizens: ¥860
- Australian Citizens: ¥508
- EU Countries Citizens: ¥433
- Indian Citizens: ¥341.58
- Developing countries: ¥238.41
5 How to get the China Student Visa
1. Get an Acceptance letter from a Chinese university
If you want to be provided an acceptance letter, you will need to have applied for admission into the School.
Your starting point is to research the school you want to study, its location, and whether they have the course you want to study. You can make use of online forums, search engines, and Quora to make an informed decision. Once you decide on the School, you can then apply for admission.
If you are accepted into the University, you will be provided an acceptance letter and a JW201 or JW202 which will make part of the documents you will tender for a China Study Visa.
2. Get ready your documents
There are important documents that you will need during your visa application. It is best to begin to gather the documents at this stage:
- A valid passport with a validity of at least six months and a photocopy of its data page.
- A recent passport-sized photograph measures 48 mm by 33 mm in size. The background must be white.
- One completed Visa Application Form.
- Letter of offer or Acceptance letter from the University.
- Proof of Accommodation.
- A medical record.
- Evidence of legal status (required for individuals applying for a visa outside their country of citizenship).
- The original and a photocopy of Form JW201 or Form JW202 issued by the relevant Chinese authorities (required for X1 Visa applicants). If you have been awarded a scholarship, you are required to complete the JW201 form. If No, you should fill out the JW202 form.
Note: Further documents may also be required from you depending on the country you are from.
3. Apply for the student visa
Depending on the country you are in, you will be able to apply online at the Chinese Visa Application Service Center, embassy, or consulate in your country.
If after looking through you did not see your country, you should set an appointment with the Chinese embassy in your country to apply for the visa.
Go with all the documents and any additional ones they asked you to bring along. You can always check the contact details on search engines such as Google to reach out to them and set an appointment. You will also need to make arrangements for the visa application fee.
The normal processing time for a China student visa application is 4 working days but it is best to apply one month before the date you intend to travel to avoid the unexpected.
4. Apply for a Residence Permit.
The student visa is like an entry visa. If you are with the X1-Visa, you will need to apply for a residence permit after entering China and have gotten an accommodation. This application should be completed within 30 days from the date of your entry. The residence permit will be valid for a period of five years.
To apply for the Residence permit, visit the Public Security Bureau (PSB) Exit and Entry Administration Office in China.
Holders of an X2 Visa typically do not require a residence permit, as their stay in China is intended for a duration not more than 6 months.
6 Can I Work in China With a Student Visa?
Yes, International students are allowed to take part-time paid employment but they will only be able to work 8 hours weekly and not more than 40 hours per month.
7 Is there a Language requirement for studying in China?
Foreign students do not really need a language proficiency test to apply for a Study Visa. However, the schools will require you to provide one as proof.
You can always undergo one of the English tests like IELTS, TOEFL, Duolingo, or The International English Test (IET).
One of the advantages of studying in China is that despite the official language being Mandarin, a large percentage of the institutions offer their course in English Language.