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roddy

Visa Changes - what you going to do?

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roddy

Recent changes in the way visas are handled look likely to hit hardest those who use F and L visas to study here independently, freelance or do business or work for companies not entitled to employ foreigners. While there's no way of telling how things will pan out after the singularity event that is the Olympics, it seems like the days of being able to just be here hassle free and long term without any kind of sponsoring organization may be at an end for some time.

So, those of us affected - what are you planning to do? Give up and go home? Resign yourself to constant running around to extend visas and make out-of-China trips? Getting a proper job? Sign up at a university?

I've had three one year, multi-entry HK visas, my last one obtained just before they stopped issuing them and made six-months the best you could get without documentation. I've been on a student visa / residence permit this year, and while I didn't opt to enroll in a university just for that reason the fact that it was an easy visa was in the back of my mind.

As for next year, I'm not sure. I'd hate to have to be worrying about visas more than every six months or so, and the idea of continuing on a student visa seems tempting. But do that for a few years and you've spent the kind of money which could have been used to set up your own company or something instead - but that's just a whole different kind of hassle. A proper job isn't particularly appealing. I found myself looking at a teaching ad the other day thinking 'hmmm, small income, only 16 hours work a week, no visa hassles . . tempting.' I can't see myself doing it, but a few years back the thought wouldn't even have occurred. . .

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imron

So, those of us affected - what are you planning to do?

Hope that my employer can get me a Z visa before my current F visa runs out. Wheels are sort of in motion but it might be a close thing.

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heifeng

aiyaaa worst comes to worst just go home for a while and try to make the most of it and then come back....but this whole visa ordeal is making it really difficult for any 'long', heck, even mid-term planning....

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mr.stinky

the retirement visas in malaysia and thailand are looking better and better......

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imron

Yeah, but I hear they don't have very standard Mandarin in those places :wink:

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Prodigal Son

I don't know what I'll do - I have until July to make a decision. I'll either leave until this passes or enroll at a university here. I may or may not actually go to the classes.

This is an enormous issue though, the majority of my foreign friends here are on F visas, like myself. All of us will have to change something. If this rule doesn't revert back to normal after the olympics China will definitely see a dramatic loss of foreigners.

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Marco

same problem here, finishing my BA this summer and have to leave then, trying to find a job, but being able to speak chinese is not good enough anymore. I just changed my passport and went to the PSB to get my visa in to my new passport, they were really nasty, asked me a lot of questions. Does any one now if this will change after the games?

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deterius

This is such a pain, I live in Hawaii and I have a green card here, but Im going to need send all my paperwork back to canada to get a 30 day visa!

Now I have a problem, my original ticket is for 4 months, do you guys think I can get an L visa and then change it to an F visa while Im in China? Will it look weird if I submit for a 30 day visa when my return ticket 4 months later?

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heifeng
I just changed my passport and went to the PSB to get my visa in to my new passport, they were really nasty, asked me a lot of questions. Does any one now if this will change after the games?

the nastiness just depends on the person...and how good you are at giving doe eyes...but if you exceeded 10 DAYS without getting a NEW visa in your passport, then you are technically here illegally...just so you know...

[edit] that is, if your old passport has been destroyed/marked cancelled. (which depends on your nation's embassy) the US embassy punches wholes thru it and stamps it cancelled and fills in the date it was cancelled

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lilongyue

Has it been explicitly stated that these new visa policies will be revoked after the Olympics? I plan to be on a student visa until March of next year, and while I'm thinking about leaving China around that times, certain circumstances beyond my control may not allow me to. If the policies don't change, then I need to start planning accordingly.

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roddy

I don't think anything has been stated categorically anywhere, and it's unlikely it will be. After all the Hong Kong business visas were dubious in the first place. You aren't going to get government departments saying 'To promote international friendship, we've decided to turn a blind eye to Hong Kong travel agents carrying bags full of foreigners' passports onto the Chinese mainland and bribing a PSB official to issue a visa, thus allowing said foreigners to work for dodgy schools and pursue nebulous business interests.'

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lilongyue

Haha! I've never actually been in China on one of those business visas. I've always had work or student visas. Have to say that students visas are a godsend!

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heifeng

so I just came back from the Beijing psb and it seems like unless I want to go through a school (to somehow extend my F or change back to an X visa...which is still very shady on whether or not this would be do-able this summer) I will have to go home in order to get an L visa...

So basically L visas must be issued outside of China...ughh. I guess my first response on this thread is what is gonna happen, go back to the US, figure out a longer term plan before I come back and just make the best of it since it's not really worth it for me to go home and come back right away...blaaahhh:mrgreen:

anyone else figured out what they are doing?

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cdn_in_bj
I will have to go home in order to get an L visa...

You can't get one from HK? I thought I read in another thread that onebir just got his done there. Or is it harder/not possible for Americans to get L-visas in HK? If so, that really sucks.

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roddy

That was a Z visa - whether it's possible for a US passport to get an L visa in HK or not I don't know, the official advice on their website is to do it in your home country.

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heifeng
You can't get one from HK? I thought I read in another thread that onebir just got his done there. Or is it harder/not possible for Americans to get L-visas in HK? If so, that really sucks.

even if it is somehow possible to get a L in HK or what not, me thinks it's just better to get outta dodge for the olympics...too much of a hassle and too lil' incentive to stay in Beijing at this point....but hey my goal was to get out of BJ for the olympics, so this visa ordeal is just the last straw:twisted: I'm looking forward to coming back to China after a few months...but definitely not to Beijing!

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outcast

How much harm to the economy do you guys think this will do?

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roddy

About six shillings worth. Anyone who's making real money will simply work around it somehow - they'll get a legit visa, they'll hop in and out of HK, they'll employ a local instead of a foreigner, they'll go to Thailand and work over the net. It might hit some specific people or businesses hard, but someone or something will substitute. So overall, on the grand scale of the Chinese economy, it won't even register.

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