China Visa: Extension and Renewal (Updated 2018)


Bad news first: It is not possible to renew, extend or change the type of your Chinese visa. However, you can apply for a new visa while staying in China. You will need to apply at a Public Security Bureau (PSB) Exit and Entry Administration office.


The new visa starts from the date of the issue and the old visa is cancelled at that time. Pay attention to this as the visas received outside China have their validity calculated from the entry date.


You will need to submit the visa application at least 7 days before your old visa expires. The PBS officers will make the decision about issuing you the new visa within those 7 days. Therefore there is no gap between your visas.


If you applied late, you have practically overstayed and you could get fined and even deported.


It seems that one month is a standard validity of the tourist (L) visa that you can receive when applying for a visa while you are in China.


Residency registration


According to the Chinese law, foreigners need to register, both in urban and rural areas, within the 24 hours after their arrival. This registration is completely free, but it is mandatory.


If you are staying in a hotel they can provide you with a hotel accommodation registration slip since they are connected with the PSB.


If you are not staying in a hotel, you must obtain an accommodation registration printout from the police station for the area you are living in.


If you are staying in a non-accredited hotel or with friends or in a rented apartment, you should either register or stay in an accredited hotel for one night in order to get the registration slip.


You will need to bring to the registration (originals and copies):

– Your passport;

– Your host’s household registration or a copy of your apartment rental contract;

– A copy of your landlord’s ID card (if you can ask them to go with you);

– A filled out Temporary Residence registration form.

If you move to another apartment/hotel/hostel or have your visa renewed, you will need to go through the registration again.


Make sure you apply for your visa before your trip. You can easily and quickly apply for your Chinese visa on our website.