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How long is the resident permit process?


chadthehig

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chadthehig

As with many of the folks on this forum, I'll be arriving in China soon with an X1 and will need to change it to a residency permit within 30 days.

I have been confused as to whether this means to begin that process of getting the permit within 30 days or to complete that process within 30 days.

 

I have found one source from the chinese embassy seeming to suggest that this process can happen in 5 days - http://www.china-embassy.org/eng/ywzn/mtyw/press_1/t538157.htm, whereas one informational on NYU Shanghai claims it is 3 to 6 weeks for a 4 year permit https://shanghai.nyu.edu/campus-life/new/visa. For the record I am just transferring to a one year permit.

 

This is an issue to me because I had wanted to visit a very good friend in Korea while I was in Shanghai, and our mutual availability seems to disappear after early October. I was looking at the September 29th weekend to visit him, and I'll arrive in Shanghai September 6th. Thus, I would need to get that permit within 22 days to successfully have re-entry capability into China if I went to Korea that weekend.

 

So, anyone know if this would be possible if I applied for the permit immediately after arriving in SH? Thank you so much for your feedback. I want to figure this out as soon as possible so I can purchase the flight to KR before prices skyrocket.

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It should be possible, but I'm not sure I'd book flights on the assumption you'll get it done. At the very least track down some recent info from Shanghai specifically. 

 

 

Shanghai says 5 days, which is fast, but Shanghai does have that reputation for efficiency. Or at least, less sluggishness.

 

First off, speak to the school when you arrive, or before, and see what they say. If it looks like it won't happen quickly enough I'd take control of the process yourself - don't wait for the university to shepherd you through the medical process, go to the hospital as soon as you can and get the medical done. Fill the form in, gather your documentation, head to the PSB. Explain the situation, offer to pay fees for expedited service. See what happens. 

 

 

 

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chadthehig

Thank you so much Roddy. That is the kind of turnaround I was hoping for. From your experience or knowledge, is it common for people to not be awarded the permit immediately or until a second try is made due to some "mistake" on the application? Or would the bigger issue generally just be applying ASAP to negate the effects of sluggishness?

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abcdefg
On 8/29/2017 at 2:52 AM, chadthehig said:

Or would the bigger issue generally just be applying ASAP to negate the effects of sluggishness?

 

The process often has a lot of bureaucratic inertia and proceeds at a slow pace because nobody in authority cares much about pushing it along. They have no skin in the game, they have nothing to gain from it moving efficiently or fast.

 

Like Roddy says, above, you will need to take charge of this project yourself. You will need to be a "squeaky wheel." You won't just be able to sit back and hope. You will need to approach it with vigor. You may have to give small incentives to those in charge. A cup of milk tea for an overworked clerk, a basket of fruit for the office manager.

 

Enlist local allies. Try to get someone else at your school who has done it themselves to help you along with the process. This will be good practice for you in dealing with other administrative issues in China. Try not only to succeed this one time, but to begin learning a method that will be useful in months and years to come.

 

As an Old China Hand I can promise that you will need these skills again and again.

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I'd imagine they'll look it over when you hand it in, and there's no reason you can't ask them to. It's quite a straightforward process - it might be your first time, but everyone else you deal with will likely do this hundreds of times a year. It's all down to how efficient they are in shifting the pieces of paper around. You can probably speed things up with the university by taking over some stuff (ie, going to the hospital asap, rather than waiting for the school to organise a bus), but the PSB will move at the PSB's pace.

 

 

I would

a) Figure out what paperwork you need and where you should get it from. 

b) On arriving, visit the school and ask how long they expect it to take and what you can do to speed things up. Bear in mind this is a hugely busy time of year for them and they probably get asked about this multiple times a day, so be patient and friendly.

 

Maybe be slightly wary of what the school tells you - it's not impossible a big bunch of passports will hang around on a desk for a few days so someone only has to make one trip, or the PSB, confident that those applications have already been vetted by the school and won't present any problems, leaves them a bit later to process. 

 

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chadthehig

@abcdefg and @roddy wow thank you both for the absolutely tremendous advice! Big thank you

There's quite a bit of institutional "culture" it appears I'll need to get acclimated to rather quickly. On the bright side, involving warm milk and fruit baskets in generally mundane transactions does make the experience more memorable.

 

I'll definitely take your wisdom to heart.

On one other matter highly related to this - I finally got my X1 today, and it listed my entries as "M." I asked a passport agent if this meant that I could leave and re-enter China before receiving the permit, and she actually wasn't certain herself. If either of you have been on the X1 before, do you have any idea if the M just refers to the capacity of the residency permit or that it describes the 30 day visa itself? If the latter, than the whole matter of my question will have quaintly been made a moot point.

 

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abcdefg
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On the bright side, involving warm milk and fruit baskets in generally mundane transactions does make the experience more memorable.

 

奶茶 = nai cha = milk tea (aka "bubble tea".) It's a popular beverage in China. Served cold.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bubble_tea

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chadthehig

Goodness - I think I just bore the fruit of an insufficient read. Oops. I've had bubble tea in tokyo before and agree it is best when cold. What a gaffe. lol thank you for clarifying

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奶茶 is just milk tea, not bubble tea! Bubble tea is 珍珠奶茶, the 珍珠 are the bubbles. I actually think it's pretty good warm as well.

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I'd say yes, you could leave and re-enter, but if you're doing so close to its expiry I wouldn't be surprised if they query whether or not you have enough time to carry out the application.

 

I'd also save the gifts for later, personally. You should do fine with a smile and lots of gratitude. 

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