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eion_padraig

More passport checks in Guangzhou

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eion_padraig

There have been published reports in the local press saying there will be more checks on foreigners documents in Guangzhou. The reports emphasize the number of foreigners overstaying their visa for trade. From the ones I saw in English, there were overtones in the reporting that made it sound like they'd be continuing to target folks from African and the Middle East.

 

A favorite bar of mine had police show up about 3 weeks ago and ask all the foreigners for their paperwork. This was a small place near Wuyang that has mostly Chinese and foreigners not from Africa or the Middle East. That may have been due to the shake up with a new mayor though, and no one was taken to the police station though they shut down the bar.

 

I've started carrying my passport with me when I'm going out to bars, and I'm debated carrying it with me more often. It'd be nice if they gave people with Z visas some alternative identification card as losing my passport would be a huge pain. But I doubt that will happen anytime soon. Obviously this is one of those laws where every foreigner is always supposed to have their passport with them, but it's recently been being enforced a lot more often.

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889
Flickserve

Any problems for the Brit's? Based on parliament criticising China for what is happening in Hong Kong.

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hedwards

I'm not really surprised by this. It might well just be a case of them wanting to keep a closer eye on foreigners in the area. When I was there a couple years ago I regularly saw foreigners of African origin involved with illegal activity on the streets. Mostly dealing drugs. It wouldn't surprise me if they've finally gotten sick and tired of it and decided to crack down on it.

 

Or, China being China it could be something unrelated to that. But, I would be surprised if this had anything to do with whatever is going on in Beijing at the present. Guangzhou is quite a ways away from central control and things always do seem to get a bit looser the farther you are away from Beijing.

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Takeshi

This is quite scary. How many people actually carry their passports around all the time? What happened to the people who were caught not carrying.

 

I agree it would totally be useful if they gave you a card or something easier to carry. In HK we get a HKID that we carry around, while the passport can stay at home.

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eion_padraig

I had a former colleague, middle-aged white woman from the US, who got taken to the police station until her husband arrived with her passport. I've also heard that people are sometimes given the opportunity to "pay a fine" of 100 RMB by police.

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liuzhou

The cops here have told me repeatedly not to carry my passport. It gives them more trouble if it gets lost or stolen.

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xuefang

I actually carry my passport with me almost all the time, if it would get stolen, so would my phone, money and other important items, don't see losing my whole handbag that big of a risk. I don't take my passport with me if I go to the gym or grocery shopping near home, but if I go to the city, then I will always have my passport with me. That being said, I've only had my passport checked two times in five years.

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889

I suppose another approach is to keep shots of your passport and visa on your phone.

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Takeshi

Would the police accept photos/photocopies though? Especially if there is a crackdown going on you could be in trouble.

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GaHanna

Up in Shenyang, I always carry photocopies. Only checked once and worked out great.

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Wang7

Not sure if this is applicable, but the US issues passport cards as well as the standard passport booklet. Just wondering if other nations issue cards as well.  Would the jingcha have a problem with a foreigner carrying one in lieu of the booklet?

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roddy

Where do you put your visa?

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hedwards

@Roddy, that turns out to be a moot point as China isn't a part of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. The relevant countries can be found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Passport_Card#Countries

 

As far as I know, without that sticker with the Visa and possibly residency information to look at, they have a much harder time of figuring out your status. That probably has changed a bit in recent times, I've heard that they've been upgrading their capabilities to make it easier to keep track of records.

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