Chinese Non-Business (F) Visa Application Requirements

Chinese Non-Business (F) visa is required for those who are traveling to China for research, academic or cultural exchange on behalf of an institution or employer in the US. The applicant should not be paid by the institution in China, otherwise the applicant will need to apply for Work (Z) visa. F visa usually allow you to stay in China for up to 30 days per visit and can be issued for single entry, double entry or multiple entries up to one year. The total length of a visa is at the sole discretion of the Consulate, and they may issue a limited entry or shorter duration visa. The requirements for Non-Business (F) visa are detailed below.

Do not staple any of the documents together. The Consulate will reject all stapled applications. Paperclips may be used.

1: Original Passport Plus a Photocopy of the Name Page

Certain Non-US passport holders cannot apply for a visa through third parties and must apply in person at the Chinese Consulate/Embassy. The following includes, but not limited to:

Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Congo, France, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Nepal, Nigeria, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mauritania, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Turkey, Uzbekistan

2: Your Visa Application Form

Please check our Guide to Filling Application Form for tips.

3: One Recent Passport Photo

Please see: Chinese Visa Photo requirements

4: Hotel and Round-Trip Flight Confirmation 

5: Invitation Letter from China

One of the following invitation letters is required:

Invitation letter issued by the Chinese institution must include the following:

  1. Applicant’s personal information such as: name, date of birth, passport number, full name of the institution which the applicant works for in the US and the job title.
  2. Major purpose of visit (Academic exchange, research, etc.)
  3. Cities the applicant will be visiting.
  4. Date of arrival and departure.
  5. Relationship between the two institutions in the US and China.
  6. State who will bear the costs of the applicant’s accommodations in China.
  7. China’s inviting person’s information such as: full name, job title, address, fax , phone number of the inviting person.
  8. Official seal of the institution and signature of the inviting person.

Sample of Academic Exchange Invitation Letter:


6: Payment

Select your passport type:

US Citizen or Non-US Citizen

We currently offer a Visa Package that includes return shipping! 

Current packages offered:

Basic Visa Package or Express Visa Package

You have the option to include your own prepaid label with your application or purchase from our website. Please see Shipping.

7: Additional Requirements For Each Consulate

Main requirements for Chinese visa are usually the same across the Chinese Consulates, however, there are some certain requirements for each Chinese Consulate. Please visit Additional Requirements Based on Jurisdiction to see if any of the listed rules apply to you.