The 144-hour visa-free transit policy has been carried out in Shanghai, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang in east China to facilitate international travelers since January 30th, 2016. The policy, aimed at boosting tourism and business in the Yangtze River Delta Region, allows passengers from 51 countries or regions to transit in Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang for no more than 144 hours (six days) without holding a visa. During the layover period, passengers can move around the three places but are not permitted to visit other cities of China.
*Please note that China Eastern Airlines has no control over any traveler’s eligibility to use the 144-hour visa-free transit policy. Any traveler’s eligibility and/or ability to exit Shanghai Pudong International Airport or any other airport/city participating in this policy is solely at the discretion of the Chinese government and/or immigration authorities upon arrival in China.
Countries having access to this policy are the same as those enjoying 72-hour free transit policy, including:
- 24 Schengen Agreement Countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland
- 13 Other European Countries: Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia (FYROM), Albania
- 6 American Countries: the United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile
- 2 Oceania Countries: Australia, New Zealand
- 6 Asian Countries: Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar
Eligible Transit Ports
The 144-hour visa-free transit program has been implemented in Nanjing Lukou Airport of Jiangsu, Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport of Zhejiang, and all air, sea and railway ports of Shanghai, including Pudong Airport, Hongqiao Airport, Shanghai Port International Cruise Terminal, Wusong Passenger Transport Center and all railway stations in Shanghai.
Conditions for Application
- Passengers should hold an onward ticket with a confirmed seat and date as well as a valid visa to a third country or region (if required).
- Passengers are required to enter and leave from the eligible transit ports only.
- During the layover period, they can travel within the administrative regions of Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang, but can’t leave for other cities.
- The layover time should be limited to 144 hours. However, the 144-hour free stay period does not start until 00:00 of the day following passengers’ arrival. So actually, the allowed time to stay is a little bit longer than 144 hours.
Documents Needed for Application
- Valid passport
- Confirmed onward ticket
- Visa for a third country/region (if needed)
- A fully completed Arrival/Departure Card
Inform the carrier when boarding - Fill an Arrival/Departure Card - Apply for the 144-hour stay permit upon arrival - Claim the luggage (if needed) - Go through customs - Leave the airport
- It is necessary to inform the carrier before you arrive, so that they can forward your request to the immigration office for processing.
- There is a counter/lane dedicated for the 144-hour free transit at the immigration inspection, so passengers can go there directly by following the signs.
- After your request for the 144-hour free transit is approved, the officer will stamp a stay permit on your passport, which shows your allowed stay duration.
- If you have a valid visa for China, but you don’t want to use it this time, remember to tell the officer that you need to use the 144-hour free transit.
- After leaving the airport, remember to register at local police station within 24 hours after arrival. If you live in a hotel, you don’t need to do that because the hotel will do it for you. Otherwise, you should go to the police station in person to register your stay.
- If passengers have to go to other cities or they can’t leave within 144 hours, they should go to the local PSB and apply for a normal visa. Otherwise, they may be faced with a fine.
For more information, please contact Shanghai General Station of Immigration Inspection at 0086-21-5110510, Nanjing Lukou Airport at 0086-25-968890, and Hangzhou Xiaoshan Airport at 0086-571-96299.
Information regarding visas for China can be found on the official website of the Chinese Embassy and your local Chinese Consulate website.
More information can be found on your local Chinese visa centre.