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Volunteer Visa


Poglog

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I'm planning to volunteer for about 3 months and then travel for a couple weeks or so to see some friends. Some people told me to get a Business Visa (F), others told me to get a Tourist Visa (Z). 

 

From your experience what would you guys recommend? Any insight will be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks

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Hi Poglog, and welcome to the forum!  I think this will depend on who you are volunteering for, and also your nationality.  To get an F visa you will need a letter of invitation from the organization with which you are going to volunteer.  I think you would be wise to start off by asking the advice of the organization in question, and they can tell you their experience with previous volunteers.  A tourist visa will be less hassle as far as the documents you need, but, depending on your nationality, you might not be able to get a tourist visa which spans a long enough time for your stay.  You also need to find out whether or not volunteering with this organization is considered as 'work', because if it is you risk getting in trouble if you do it on a tourist visa.  Just to confirm, did you mean a tourist visa or a work visa?  Tourist is L, work is Z. 

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Yeah, I meant an L visa, sorry.

 

I'm Canadian. Originally I was going to get a work visa and teach English, but I don't have a Bachelor's in anything so I wrote that off. Basically I'm trying to get around it by volunteering somewhere, just in exchange for accommodation. Since I won't be getting paid I don't see why it'd be work, but I'll double check with my organization and see what visas other volunteers have had in the past.

 

My schedule is totally flexible so I could do it all on a tourist visa if I had to; I just want to stay for as long as possible so I can really improve my Chinese.

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Alright, I found out the other volunteers just used a tourist visa. Although the tourist visa is only 60-90 days max per visit it seems like I could just leave the country and come back right away as long as it's a multiple entry visa(please correct me if I'm wrong).

 

If so that makes things pretty easy.

 

For example:

1. Enter China and volunteer for the duration of the visa.

2. Leave China.

3. Enter China and do some traveling for a couple weeks.

 

Does that sound viable with a tourist visa?

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I haven't looked through it all, but you might find answers to some of the questions you have here - http://www.mychinavisa.com/features/faqs

 

A google search will also bring up some other websites that might be helpful regarding what you require for each visa type.  The reason I asked your nationality is because as a Canadian citizen I think you can get a 10 year tourist visa, which could be useful if you are planning multiple trips to China over the next few years, or want to stay for an extended period and don't mind border hopping from time to time (very easy if you are somewhere like Guangzhou and can just jump on the train to Hong Kong and back).  I don't know all the details as I'm British and so can't get this type of visa, but I am reasonably sure that they are multiple entry, and have a maximum stay in the region of 60-90 days.

 

Regarding the work thing, I totally agree.  However, this is China, and our opinion is basically irrelevant on matters such as these hah!

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HuayangAcademy

An organisation might be able to help you get an F visa for 6 months or so as I have seen people do this in the name of cultural exchange, 

Another option would be to get an X1 visa and study Chinese, 

Many schools have programs where they can provide lessons, food and accommodation if you teach in their English language programs. 

 

It seems you don't have a very clear view of what you want to do besides be in China. Research cities you would like to live in and look for organisations their, 

I know of many great volunteer opportunities here in Kunming but I am not sure how well they are equipped to provide visa assistance. 

 

Best of luck and welcome to China

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4 hours ago, Poglog said:

Alright, I found out the other volunteers just used a tourist visa. Although the tourist visa is only 60-90 days max per visit it seems like I could just leave the country and come back right away as long as it's a multiple entry visa(please correct me if I'm wrong).

 

If so that makes things pretty easy.

 

For example:

1. Enter China and volunteer for the duration of the visa.

2. Leave China.

3. Enter China and do some traveling for a couple weeks.

 

Does that sound viable with a tourist visa?

 

Sorry, I completely missed this post when I replied previously.  This sounds feasible, yes. 

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Thanks for the info guys, I think I've got things figured out now.

 

Learning with an X1 visa in exchange for teaching sounds interesting too, preferable actually, I'll definitely look into it for the future.

 

 

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HuayangAcademy

No worries and best of luck, if you ever think Kunming might suit you there are good schools, universities and plenty of schools I'm sure would be happy to help you out, 

 

Best of luck

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