The new 144-hour visa-free transit policy has been implemented by Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei Province since December 28, 2017. The policy applies to citizens from 53 countries who hold valid international travel documents, and a passenger ticket for connecting travel to a third country (region) with confirmed seats and a departure time within 144 hours.
According to the Ministry of Public Security regulations, individuals who do not hold a valid Chinese passport and who apply for 144-hour visa-free transit status should meet the following requirements:
I. They must be citizens from one of the 53 eligible countries specified, and hold valid international travel documents certifying their nationality and identity;
II. They must have a valid passenger ticket for connecting travel (including an airplane ticket, ferry ticket or train ticket), to a third country or region. The ticket for travel must specify the traveler has a confirmed seat and that the departure time is within 144 hours of arriving at the Beijing Capital International Airport; Beijing West Railway Station; Tianjin Binhai International Airport; Tianjin International Cruise Home Port; Hebei Shijiazhuang International Airport; or Qinhuangdao Harbor. Or he/ she must possess relevant supporting documents.
III. Eligible travelers can choose to enter or depart through any port at Beijing Capital International Airport; Beijing West Railway Station; Tianjin Binhai International Airport; Tianjin International Cruise Home Port; Hebei Shijiazhuang International Airport or Qinhuangdao Harbor, and travellers must stay in the administrative areas of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei.
After document examination and verification is conducted by the border authority at the port of Beijing Capital International Airport or Beijing West Railway Station, applicants who meet the above requirements will be issued with a temporary entry permit which will enable them to enter and stay in Beijing, Tianjin or Hebei for 144 hours according to regulations.
1. Citizens who do not hold a Chinese passport and who have successfully applied for 144-hour visa-free transit can stay in the administrative areas of Beijing, Tianjin or Hebei for up to 144 hours. Failure to comply with the terms of the visa-free transit will be punished according to relevant regulations.
2. Individuals travelling on the 144-hour visa-free transit and staying in a hotel or accommodation other than hotels (including the self-purchased house, rented house and borrowed house) in China are required to register their temporary residence according to law. Those who stay in a hotel in China are required to check in and adhere to the hotel’s check in and personal identification protocol. Those who stay in accommodation other than hotels are required to register their temporary residence with the local public security facility within 24 hours of arrival, either in person, or by the person who is providing the accommodation. Registration is required at every residence that the individual stays in during the 144 hour visa-free transit. If an individual changes residence multiple times, he/she is required to register with the public security facility for each place of residence where he/she is staying, within 24 hours of arrival.
The 144-hour visa-free transit policy shall apply to the following 53 countries:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republic of Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Monaco, Belarus, United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
The duration of stay as referred to in the 144-hour visa-free transit policy will begin from 00:00 o’clock the following day, after entry in any port at Beijing Capital International Airport; Beijing West Railway Station; Tianjin Binhai International Airport; Tianjin International Cruise Home Port; Hebei Shijiazhuang International Airport or Qinhuangdao Harbor.
In accordance with the 144-hour visa-free transit policy, from 00:00 o’clock the following day after entry in Beijing, he/she will be allowed to stay for six days in Beijing, Tianjin or Hebei without an entry visa.
According to the regulations pertaining to the 144-hour visa-free transit policy, any applicant must hold a valid connecting passenger ticket for travel, with confirmed seats, and a departure time within 144 hours of arrival in Beijing, or he/ she must possess relevant supporting documents. The applicant must have these documentations before applying for the144-hour visa-free transit.
The policy applies for 144-hour visa-free transit rather than visa-free entry. Therefore, the applicant should transit to a third country or region to be eligible for this policy. Travelers returning to their country of origin would not be eligible for this policy.
According to the relevant regulations of the Exit and Entry Administration Law of the People’s Republic of China, individuals who do not hold a valid Chinese passport and are suspected of illegal residence in China will be warned. In case of gross violation, the offender will be fined RMB500 per day for illegal residence, not exceeding RMB10,000 in total, or he/she will be detained for 5-10 days. Anyone who violates the relevant laws and regulations for the 144 hour visa-free transit policy may not be accepted for future applications for visa-free transit.