New Transit Visa Rules Are Making It Easier to See China’s Most Famous Sites

It’s now easier than ever for Americans to visit the most famous parts of China.

The country has expanded the number of cities where visitors can apply for visas upon arrival. The “G Visa” is a six-day visa that allows visitors from 53 countries to travel throughout China. The new policies go into effect on Dec. 1.

Visitors can now apply for the G Visa at 30 ports in 23 different cities around the country. New additions to the list of cities include Chongqing and Xi’an, famous for its terracotta army. Visitors can also explore Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Beijing, Tianjin, Hebei and Liaoning with a transit visa.

The 53 countries that are included in the scheme are the United States, Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan and Singapore.

The rules of the transit visa are for visitors who want to explore part of China before continuing onto another destination. In order to receive this visa, visitors must be traveling onwards to a third country, which could include Hong Kong or Macau. For example, an American could fly to Beijing on this visa, stay for up to six days, and then continue to Hong Kong or Japan before returning home. But multiple stops in China are not allowed. Visitors cannot explore multiple Chinese cities on the G Visa.

Yin Chengji, the Vice Director of China’s National Immigration Administration (NIA), told the state-run news agency CGTN that the “new policies will help the cities upgrade their tourism industry and let foreign travelers enjoy their trips without worrying about a time limit.”

In order to secure the visa, visitors must show a ticket onto their final destination. They must also have filled out the visa application form, preferably already printed out, and have affixed passport-sized photos to it.

The G “transit” visa was introduced in 2013 and previously had a three-day limit.

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