Category: Visa

Chinese Business Visa & Requirements

When applying for a Chinese visa, it is essential that you choose the one that suits you best. If you go to China to conduct business with Chinese companies, make sure you apply for a Chinese Business Visa (M Visa). This visa will not only allow you to travel all around China and experience their way of life but will allow you to create lifelong partnerships with companies or organizations in China that can be mutually beneficial.

Who Gets a Chinese Business Visa?

The M Visa is a visa explicitly given to foreigners who are coming to China with the plan of partnering or negotiating with businesses in China. A business that falls in this visa category includes signing contracts, negotiating import and export of products, or even getting a tour of how someone else’s company operates. If you only had a tourist visa in China, you would not be able to do any of this since it would not fall under the purpose of your visit. Business visas are designed to keep all foreigners organized in their country and make sure no one is doing what they are not supposed to do. Please do not confuse this visa with the China F Visa, as the F Visa is for science and culture, not business.

How Long Does a Chinese Business Visa Last?

The M Visa typically lasts for three months with a single stay for a maximum of 30 days. These numbers are often more flexible and can be extended with the approval of the Chinese government. Citizens of the US can apply for an M Visa that can last up to 10 years as long as you use it for business purposes. If the Chinese government finds out that you have been using your M Visa for vacationing in China while not doing any business, they can deport you or go as far as detaining and charging you. If you want to go on a vacation to China, you will need a separate Chinese Tourist Visa (L Visa). The same way that an M Visa cannot be used to vacation in China applies vice versa; the L Visa cannot be used to conduct business on Chinese territory.

What do I Need to Get a Chinese Business Visa?

To obtain an M Visa, you will have to follow the following steps:

  • US passport with at least:
  • Filled out an application that is printed out with passport size color photo glued on it. The following form can be found here.
  • If applying from a country that is not the US or China, you will need proof of residence to prove you have residency in the US.
  • Invitation letter from one of the following:
    • Business partner
    • Institute or company in China
    • Organizers of trade fairs or Chinese participant in the trade fair
  • When requesting an invitation letter, make sure the writer of the letter includes:
    • Full name
    • Birthdate
    • Passport number
    • Purpose of visit
    • Arrival and departure dates
    • Places visiting
    • Inviter’s name, address, phone number, and signature

How do I Get a Chinese Business Visa?

There are several ways to get an M Visa; the most popular method is by applying and submitting your application form to a Chinese embassy or consulate. The application form can be found anywhere online or with a quick search here. You can also hand in the application form in person if you think it is safer or faster. Another way to hand in the application form is by giving it to someone else to hand into the Chinese embassy or consulate. Commonly, when you give your application form to someone else, that person is from the travel agency who you have put your trust into to take you through the process of getting your visa.

When the application is submitted to the embassy or consulate, it is reviewed for any possible red flags. These include prior convictions for crimes committed or a history of overstaying on a visa. These are a couple of a number of ways your visa application may be denied. If you do get rejected, request the Chinese embassy or consulate what it was that get you denied and tried correcting those mistakes.

How Long Does It Take For me to Get my Visa?

Usually getting your M Visa takes about one whole business week. For a service fee, you can obtain a visa that can arrive in as little as one business day with the help of expediting services. Regardless of how long you get to stay in China on a business visa, there is a flat rate for all options. This is because you are paying for the visa itself, and how long you get to stay is determined by the Chinese government, not by yourself. This fee does not include the possible extensions that you may request in the future while in China as those are separate additional fees.

Is it Possible to Extend my Chinese Business Visa?

To have a chance of extending your visa, you must go to a local Chinese consul that deals with the exits and entrances of foreign citizens. As long as you have at least seven days left on your Chinese Business Visa, you can apply for an extension. This is no guarantee of an extension, merely a request that can be approved or denied. Approval for an extension comes with a fee that will be paid for on site. The standard cost for a visa extension in China is anywhere from $25 to $40, depending on the place you go to.

The exception to the ‘Business-Only’ Rule for the M Visa

Just because you have gone to China on a business visa does not mean you cannot enjoy the country and all it has to offer. Since most of your business dealings are scheduled, the Chinese government knows when you are not conducting business. This allows you to enjoy the excursions, walk around your city or stay, or take a tour. Unless there was a mistake, there should be no reason for you to be punished by Chinese authorities for having a little vacation in between.

How to Legally Stay in Europe for more than 90 Days

Staying in Europe as an American citizen is much easier in comparison to other continents. Travel between the US and European countries is generally lenient, but every country has its laws regardless. For much of Europe, you cannot stay in a country for more than 90 days without the exceptions we will show you. These rules apply to most countries in the European Union and a few non-EU countries within what is known as the Schengen Area. While the EU countries of Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Cyprus are obliged to join but have not done so yet, Ireland and the United Kingdom have opted out of being in the Schengen Area. The intricacies of these visa laws are part of the reason why few people know how to stay in Europe past 90 days.

Do Some Research

Before you research how you can stay in Europe for more than 90 days, first see if you can. There are European countries that do not fall in the Schengen area, and going to or through those countries may affect your ability to stay past 90 days. This obviously doesn’t mean that only European countries in the Schengen Area let you stay 90 days. Countries such as Ukraine, Croatia, and Ireland let you stay 90 days; they’re just not in the Schengen Area.

Reasons to Stay in Europe for more than 90 Days

Stay on the Move

The first way to stay in Europe for longer than 90 days is by always moving. Although many countries share visa laws, moving between countries can ‘renew’ your stay in Europe. For example, you can only stay in the United Kingdom for up to 90 days at a time, but if you go to France for a day and come back, you can stay in the UK for another 90 days. This can work for many countries around Europe, but make sure you don’t do this regularly.

While countries allow re-entry in this manner, they might also have rules that can only allow you to be in the country for a limited number of days per year. Another way that you can travel through Europe is if you obtain short term transit visas and drive throughout the country. People who backpack through Europe always get a transit visa, which depending on the length of their trip saves money as well.

How long can you stay?

The length of stay on your visa is not only determined by your location, but also the type of visa you have. Certain visas merely allow you to stay for under 90 days without exception, so make sure you get the right visa before you decide to travel. Having a visa that does not allow multiple entries will most likely hurt your chances of being able to stay in Europe for more than 90 days. In situations such as having a student visa, make sure you consult with your university or institution before intending to stay past 90 days. This also applies to have a work visa, as employers will revoke your work permit if your visa is not valid.

Ask for an Extension

Another way of staying for longer than 90 days can be as simple as asking. If you are already in the country whose visa you obtained for, you can request an extension or a renewal on your visa. This can either be done through the country’s immigration department, online application, or back to the embassy which you applied to in the first place. If you are reapplying through the country’s immigration department, you will probably have to go through an interview with an official explaining your reason for staying past the 90 days given. Reapplying for an extension is much easy in some European countries than others. Countries like Sweden, Italy, and France, for instance, require the same documents and information as you would need the first time applying. Make sure you find out the specific documents necessary because two EU countries won’t necessarily have the same materials to fill out or the same requirements.

Visa Types

One of the more difficult ways to get a visa to last past 90 days is by applying for a particular type of visa. The types include a student, business, diplomatic, work, or an official visa. To get these visas, you will have to fulfill the requirements not just for getting the visa, but using it for its purpose. For instance, if you use your diplomatic visa to travel to the beach or resort on vacation, your visa can be revoked, and your chances of re-entering the country will drop drastically. This rule would probably be more lenient for those with a work visa. Since people with a work visa are typically staying in a foreign country for multiple years at a time, it won’t hurt a work visa holder to go on a vacation within the country once in a while. As for student visa travelers, make sure you have a letter from your institution abroad and back home approving of your need to stay past 90 days. These reasons will more than likely need to be for academic purposes, so if you want to remain in the country for new reasons, make sure to get a new visa.

Get Married

The ultimate way to extend your visa is by marriage. Getting married to a European allows you to get a visa that will last you for life and will enable you to apply for the citizenship of the country you will travel. This option is not recommended unless you have sincere intentions to marry your partner. There have been situations where people get married for the sole purpose of being able to stay for as long as they want in their country of choice, which often doesn’t end well.

Agreement Between Countries

Certain countries have an agreement with the US that allow people to stay in their country past 90 days without a visa. One of these countries is France, which has a two-way agreement that disregards the Schengen visa laws for American citizens. The agreement allows US citizens to stay up to 180 days without a visa. This law was written before the Schengen Area rules, which helps the US and France to disregard it between each other. Given this, make sure not to overstay or search for loopholes to stay longer since it is already a privilege to stay longer than most countries without a visa.

In 2021, US Citizens Must Have A Visa To Visit Europe

At the moment, the Schengen Treaty allows US citizens to visit some 26 European countries without a visa. However, the European Union (EU) is going to change that. Currently, US citizens can travel to Europe for up to 90 days without a visa. Soon, every visitor must apply for a European Travel Information and Authorization System or ETIAS.

When you apply for the ETIAS, you must have a valid passport, an email account, and a credit or debit card. Unlike a visa some countries have now that usually limits you to the number of times you can enter or exit, the ETIAS will valid for three years and will not restrict your entry or exit.

What is the Schengen Countries?

The Schengen area is made up of 26 European countries. The countries allow visitors or tourist to abide by one set of rules. If in compliance, a tourist can travel from one country to the next without getting visas from each country. However, the traveler can only stay up to 90 days. If you plan to stay longer, you must contact the high commission or embassy of the country or countries you plan to visit.

The countries that make up the Schengen region are Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

How to Get a European Visas for U.S. Citizen?

The U.S. Passport

Gathering the Documents

If you don’t have a passport, there are different places to submit your application. The most convenient and cheaper locations will accept your documents. However, the process will take time. To start the application process, gather all the necessary documents that go with the application. You can download the form, DS-11, and complete it. You can also stop by an acceptance facility and get a copy as well.

When you receive a copy of the application, it will have a guide for you to complete the form. Also included is a list of the supporting documents you will need. Once you have all the supporting documents and fee, you can submit them.

Choosing a Process

You have two options to get your passport. You can select routine which takes 4 to 6 weeks. This choice is if you are not in a rush for the passport. However, if you need it sooner, you can choose to expedite processing. Expedite processing takes 2 to 3 weeks and cost an additional $60.00.

For an emergency passport, you can go to a private passport expeditor or a regional passport agency. You will get a passport in as little as 24 hours. However, the cost is significantly higher. The good news is you can travel sooner.

Where to Submit an Application

The most convenient place to take your papers is the post office. All post offices have trained agent that will review and accept only a complete application. Other sites that will receive your documents are courthouses, county clerks’ offices, and some public libraries. The only the post offices have more extended hours of operation than the other acceptance facilities. Also, all these facilities only offer routine and expediting processing.

Private expeditors can also get you a new passport. You can have it sooner than two weeks from a private expeditor. You submit your documents and the expeditor does all the work. The sooner you need the passport, the more it will cost.

A regional agency is one of 26 agencies across the US that will get you a passport the same day. Before you show up, you must have an appointment. You must also travel to another state if you don’t have an agency in the state you reside. You will pay one fee that includes the passport and agency fees.

Overall

So, start getting prepared to have all the requirements by the time 2021 is here, you will be ready. Don’t wait for the last minute to apply for a passport or visa. The less time it takes to process an application, the more money you will pay for your travel document.

Top 5 Countries U.S.Citizens Can Travel To Without a Visa

There are about 159 countries the U.S. citizens can travel without a visa. So selecting from such a long list was not easy. The top 5 countries in this article may be up for argument; however, each has something unique to offer, and when you visit, you will realize it as well.

U.S. Passport

A passport is a document issued to citizens of the country to travel outside their native country. Another way of obtaining a passport is to become a naturalized citizen of the country you now call home. The document contains the holder photo, date of birth, address, sex, and biometrics. In the U.S., a passport comes in two forms, a book, and a card.

For an adult, 16 years and older, a passport book or card is valid for 1o years. A minor, younger than 16 years, passport or card is good for five years. Only an adult passport can be renewed.

A U.S. passport is accepted in any country around the globe. Most of these countries do not require a visa but just a passport. Some, for example, Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean, will accept a passport card instead of the book.

Visa

A visa is a stamp or electronic document that you can use to enter a country. Most visas have an expiration date. Also, some can be used for a single entry while others for multiple. Unlike a passport, a visa is unique to the country that provides it. For example, you cannot use a Chinese visa to enter Russian and the other way around. But, you can use a passport as identification for both countries.

There four types of visas. You can apply for a tourist visa, immigration, and naturalization visa, student visa, or business or work visa. Each has a set of unique requirements you must comply with to qualify. Also, the type will determine the price and how long you are allowed to remain in the country.

Top 5 Countries to Travel Without Your U.S. Passport

Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic shares the island with Haiti. This Spanish speaking country has some of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. It also has many awards winning hotels with luxury accommodations. These hotels mostly come with all-inclusive packages.

If you love sailing and snorkeling, Punta Cana is the place to go. You will see white sandy beaches with breathtaking views. You can join the excursion and shop at the Cabeza De Toro Natural Reserve for your snorkeling equipment.

Visit historical capital, Santo Domingo, to see the Columbus Alcazar Museum. You will also see the National Palace government building and 1540 built Cathedral of Santa Maria la Menor.

Another fantastic place to visit is the Fun Fun Cave. The cave is the largest in the Caribbean. Before going there, you will trek through the Los Haitises National Park and the rainforest. Once in the cave, you can explore the stalagmites and stalactites while observing the rock formation in the cave.

Peru

Peru is another country to visit without a visa. This South American country still has its history high on display, like the ruins of the Incas. You can see the modern side of the country or travel to more remote parts to understand its history.

Peru has a lot to discover. You can visit the Manu National Park, Lake Titicaca, Colca Canyon, Llanganuco Lagoon, or the wildlife observation. If you want to walk where Peru first inhabitants did, go to Machu Picchu, Chavin de Huantar, Chan Chan, Caral, or Kuelap.

If you want to see something mysterious, fly over the desert and see the drawings done between 500 and 650 AD by the Nazca settlers.

Lima, the oldest city, is mixed with historical and modern buildings. You will see churches, monasteries, mansions, and balconies built during colonial times. Also, museums with great work of arts, archeological sites, beaches, boardwalks, and the adventures of sports.

Ireland

Ireland is another magnificent place to fill with history and ready for you to explore. You can be on top of a towering sea cliff or sitting in a traditional pub enjoying the locals dancing and you joining in.

You can cruise on the iconic Shannon River or a journey through heritage and history through Athlone. Athlone offers many nature adventures. You can walk, cycle, or take boat trips. Horseback riding is another fun adventure to do. You will surely be amazed by Athlone Castle.

Standing at the top of the Gobbins Cliff will give you some of the most breathtaking views. This cliff hangs from the basalt cliffs and over the Irish Sea. It is a favorite stop along the Causeway Coastal Route.

If you think you are one with the cosmos, then chasing the northern lights is something you don’t want to miss. To see this spectacular viewing, you should be at Donegal’s Inishowen Peninsula.

For surfers, the Bundoran is the place to be. You will uncover beautiful beaches and mighty waves to hitch a ride. You will find surfers all year round which makes it pretty busy. You can get your surfing gears from the local stores, as well as take surf lessons if you are a beginner.

Israel

Israel is another country with a deep history, especially for Jews and Christians across the world. For Christians, there are many historical places to visit in Israel. For instance, Jerusalem, the Dome of the Rock shrine, historic Western Wall, Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Other famous places to visit are Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee. These places were significant in the life of Jesus Christ. You can also visit the ruins of Caesarea or the cliff fortress of Masada that overlook the Dead Sea, know for its spas and mineral-heavy water.

If you want to gather on the Mount of Beatitudes, the same place Jesus gave his Sermon on the Mount, you can join one of many excursions. Mount Tabor is another significant place to see. Yad Vashem is a memorial complex for Holocaust victims where you will view historical exhibits.

New Zealand

New Zealand is located just below Australia. It comprises of two islands both with volcanoes and glaciers. Once in New Zealand, you can visit Milford Sound, Aoraki/Mount Cook, Fiordland National Park, Waitomo Caves, or Bay of Islands.

Milford Sound is home to fur seal colonies, penguins, and dolphins. The towering Mitre Peak displays waterfalls as Stirling and Bowen Falls. You can also visit the Milford Discovery Center and the Underwater Observatory to view rare black corals and other marine life.

Aoraki/Mount Cook is the highest mountain in New Zealand. Its elevation is 12,218 feet and provides excellent glacial views.

Fiordland National Park is in the southwest of the South Island. It is known for the glacier-carved fiords of Doubtful and Milford sounds. A beech forest trail on the sandy Milford shore offers views of towering Mitre Peak.

Waitomo Caves is a village known for its extensive underground cave systems. In the Glowworm Caves, you will see thousands of glow-worms that light up the cave. At the Ruakuri Cave, there are waterfalls and limestone formations. Northeast of the village you will find the Otorohanga Kiwi House that shelters several species of rare native kiwi birds.

Bay of Islands is a New Zealand enclave encompassing more than 140 subtropical islands near the North Island. It is known for big-game fishing, Maori cultural artifacts, and undeveloped beaches. You will find remnants from the days when it was the country’s first colonial capital.

What is The Travel Requirement When Traveling on a Cruise?

If you are planning a cruise with your family or significant other, there are some things to know before taking off. I know you are excited and can’t wait to see new places and make memorable moments with your loved ones. But, remember you are going to a different country, regardless if it is one in the Caribbean or across the ocean to Europe. Each has its laws, and all visitors must comply with them.

Valid Documentations

Passport Book

First, let us start with your documents. It should not matter if you are going on a closed-loop cruise or not. A closed-loop cruise is a cruise that starts and finishes at the same port. Anyone going should have a valid U.S. passport to return home. The passport must have at least six months of validity. Some countries may accept three months validity. However, it is best to apply for a new passport if it has a few months remaining before it expires.

The process for a passport can take 4-6 weeks under normal condition. For rush service, you can get it sooner around 2-3 weeks. However, there are private expeditors and regional agencies that get you a passport in 24 hours. The quicker you expedite the process; the more your new document will cost.

Passport Card

Some countries like Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Bermuda will accept a passport card. The requirements for a passport card similar to the book. It must have at least six months validity. Since the card usage is limited to a few destinations, the cost is less than a passport for both adults and minors.

Minors can have a passport book or a card. If the cruise is closed-loop, minors can use their birth certificate instead. For international travels, it is best to get a passport book. It will make re-entry less stressful when coming through immigration.

Visa

Some countries require a visa for entry. However, some cruises will provide a visa if it was necessary. Also, most cruises usually stop at a port for a day which means a visa may not a must have.

Overview

Now that you have the information before you book a cruise or leave for one make sure you have your documents store in a safe place. Also, if anyone going needs specific medications, make sure you have enough available for the trip and extra for a few days after. There could be delays on the trip and not having the medication you need can become a problem. Make sure your finance is more than enough as well. All these precautionary methods will prepare you in case any delays arose during your cruise.

Online Guide to Working Holiday Visas for U.S. Citizens

There are many opportunities for college students and grads who would like to work abroad and travel at the same time. To do so, you must first get a working holiday visa. A working holiday visa is a resident permit allowing the holder to undertake employment in the country they obtain the visa from. Having this type of visa enables the holder to experience living in a foreign country and earning money at the same time.

How Does a U.S. Citizen Apply for A Working Holiday Visa

Like the U.S. H-1B visa that allows US companies to employ graduate level workers in specific fields such as IT, finance, accounting, engineering, etc., other countries offer similar visas. But, these visas have restrictions on who can apply for them. Most countries have an age limit and want an individual with a good health history. Generally, they are open to young people between the ages of 18-30 years old.

So, if you are a U.S. citizen and a senior college student or a recent grad who is ready to move abroad, the working holiday visa is one option to move temporarily to another country.

Where can you get a Working Holiday Visa?

There are a few countries that offer U.S. citizens working holiday visas. Each has its own rules and regulations that every applicant must follow. Before anyone gets to approve, each applicant undergoes a process before approval. For some country, the process starts by completing the application online and later conclude by a one-on-one interview. Since the stay time is short, 6-12 months or sometimes a little longer, the individual must provide proof of finance to help with their stay for the given time.

At the moment, five countries offer working holiday visas to qualify U.S. citizens. These countries are:

Other nations provide other types of visas that have different requirements. So, if you want a visa that differs from the working holiday visa, start by looking at other countries and see what they have to offer.

What You Should Know About a Working Holiday Visa

Every country has its own sets of rules and requirements for an applicant who is ready to relocate. Once you meet all of these requirements, you will have an opportunity only a few will have in their lifetime.

First, you must have a clean bill of health. Remember, you plan to go and work. If you are unable to do so because you are sick, then you will be denied the visa. The next is to have a clean criminal record. Many countries have restrictions that do not allow felons with a passport inside their country. Again, this will disqualify anyone with a felony conviction who applies for the working holiday visa.

Australia’s Working Holiday Visa

Australia’s working holiday visa is known as Subclass 462 Visa and to get one you must meet these criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen between the ages of 18-30 years old
  • Prove to have sufficient funds for AUD 5,000 or $3,802 US
  • Pay the application fee of AUD 420 or $320 US

The application is available online to complete. You will have 12 months to work but can work up to 6 months with each employer.

Ireland’s Working Holiday Visa

The requirements are similar to Australia’s except there is no age limit. Here is a list of the criteria:

  • Applicant must be a U.S. citizen
  • No age restrictions
  • Applicant be a student in postsecondary education or recently graduated
  • Prove to have sufficient funds in the amount of €1500 or $2245.15 US
  • Have a return travel ticket or €3000 or $4490.30 US
  • Pay the application fee of €250 or $374.08 US
  • Provide proof of academic status

To apply, you can in person or by mail at the Embassy of Ireland in Washington or the Consulates General of Ireland in Boston, Chicago, New York or San Francisco.

New Zealand’s Working Holiday Visa

New Zealand post-study work visa has similar requirements to Australia. What change are the proof of funds and the cost of the application? Here is a list of the conditions:

  • Be a U.S. citizen between the ages of 18-30 years old
  • Prove to have sufficient funds for $4,200 NZ or $2,950.88 US
  • Pay the application fee of AUD 420 or $295 US

If you plan to work in agriculture or the horticultural sections, you are given an additional three months. So you overall stay becomes 15 months instead of the standard 12 months given.

The Republic of Korea’s Working Holiday Visa

South Korea’s working Holiday visa is known as H-1 Visa. Like the other participating countries, South Korea has restrictions like limitations on the type of work to apply for. Also, the fund’s requirements are more when compared to the other countries. Here is the list of conditions the country has in place:

  • Be a U.S. citizen between the ages of 18-30 years old
  • Must currently be a post-secondary student or graduated from a university in the past year
  • Must have funds to support up to three months and a total of $10,000 US
  • Must have a return ticket
  • Pay the application fee of $45.00 US

To apply, you must visit the Republic of Korea Embassy or Consulate near you. An interview may be required.

Singapore Working Holiday Pass

The criteria are somewhat similar to the other participating countries. Here is the list:

  • Be a U.S. citizen between the ages of 18-25 years old
  • Must currently be a post-secondary student or graduated from a university in the past year
  • The university must be in the top 200 for overall academic performance
  • Pay the cost of the pass which is $150 US

How Long Will it Take to Get a Working Holiday Visa?

Australia and New Zealand will give you response the same day or earlier since the application can be completed online.

Singapore’s pass can take up to 21 days since the application must be mailed in. It is suitable for six months, and the cost is more reasonable when compared to the others.

Ireland and The Republic of Korea have no set time since part of the requirement is to complete an interview at one of their embassies. So, it all depends on the applicants and how quick they can proceed with the process and finish it.

How to Get Your Working Holiday Visa

Australia and New Zealand give electronic visa. So, your visa is automatically linked with your passport. To provide proof of getting a visa, print your email with the visa approval and show it to an immigration officer at the airport and then when boarding your flight.

Singapore’s pass has to be pickup at the Employment Pass Center. Once you receive the approval and pay the fees, you must schedule an e-appointment to give fingerprints. Since the pass is for six months only, it is best to look for a job before going to Singapore. Also, you have up to three months after getting approval to get your pass. If the time overlaps, you will forfeit it and must reapply again.

Ireland and Korea will give you a visa once you complete the interview and get approval. The visa is stamped in your passport.

Jobs You Can Apply For With Your Working Holiday Visa

The most common job most people apply to is teaching abroad. Many non-speaking countries prefer higher Americans to teach English. If you prefer to go to one of these countries, then this is where you are most likely to go. There are other areas; if you have the qualifications, you can work. Sectors such as hospitality, restaurants, and bars. Some countries hire engineers and architects. Other professions will require a different type of visa. Make sure to apply for the one you want and not another.

Are you ready to Travel Abroad?

If you fit the criteria to work abroad, then the working holiday visa may be the right way to earn money while learning a new culture. A working holiday visa also gives you the opportunity to travel to two countries and work in a year. So, you this is something you plan to do in your senior year of college, start saving your money so you can get approval and go to your dream destination.

How Do I Apply For A Chinese Entry Visa?

U.S. citizens who are planning to travel to China are required to obtain a Chinese Entry Visa before arriving in China. Requirements for U.S. citizens attempting to obtain a Chinese Entry Visa are different from citizens of other countries. So, it’s important to make sure you fully understand the application process.

A Chinese entry visa can be either a tourist visa or a business visa. Regardless, you must provide the same documents when you apply. If you will enter as a tourist, then you apply for a tourist visa. If your trip is business related, then apply for a business visa.

Who Needs A Chinese Entry Visa?

All U.S. citizens must obtain a Chinese Entry Visa before arriving in China. With the exception of the 72 Hour Visa-Free Transit Program. Landing visas are not available on arrival in China. Lack of a proper entry visa will result in deportation and possible detention.

What Kind Of Visa Should I Apply For?

There are four types of Chinese Entry Visa: diplomatic visa, courtesy visa, service visa, and ordinary visa. Ordinary visas are categorized into 12 or 16 types.

The ordinary visa types include Chinese phonetic letters: L, M, F, Z, X1, X2, S1, S2, Q1, Q2, C, J-1, J-2, G, D, and R.

Tourist Visa (L)

  • Issued to anyone going for touring and sightseeing
  • Proof of travel such as flight confirmation and hotel reservation is required
  • Single-entry, double-entry or multiple-entry available
  • Duration of stay is 30-60 days
  • Valid for 10 years

Business Visa (M)

  • Issued for commercial and trade activities
  • Single-entry, double-entry, and multiple-entry available
  • Duration of stay is 30-60 days
  • Valid up to 10 years

Non-Commerce Visa (F)

  • Issued for research, lecture, scientific, cultural exchange, and study
  • Single-entry and double-entry only
  • Duration if the stay is 30-90 days

Work Visa (Z)

  • Must have a work permit or employment license first
  • Issued for conducting commercial performance
  • Single-entry only

Study Visa (X1/X2)

  • Issued to students accepted by a Chinese college
  • X1 is for students staying more than 6 months
  • X2 is for students staying less than 6 months
  • X1 visa issued for multiple-entry and valid for 5 years
  • X2 visa issued for single-entry only

Private Visa (S1, Long Term)

  • Issued to visit immediate family members
    • Immediate family includes spouse, parents, sons or daughters, or parents-in-law
    • You must show proof of kinship
  • Stay duration must be 180 days or longer
  • Single-entry only
  • Must register and apply, within 30 days of entry, for a residency permit

Private Visa (S2, Short Term)

  • Issued to visit immediate family or private matters
    • Private matters include friends, divorce, inheritance, adoption, marriage, or medical services
  • Stay duration is 30-90 days
  • Multiple-entry

Family Visa (Q1, Long Term)

  • Issued to family members of Chinese citizens or someone with Chinese permanent residency
  • Stay duration exceeds 180 days
  • Single-entry only
  • Must register and apply, within 30 days of entry, for a residency permit

Family Visa (Q2, Short Term)

  • Issued to Chinese descendants or foreigners who are the spouse of Chinese citizens
  • Stay duration is up to 120 days
  • Issued for multiple-entry

Crew Visa (C)

  • Issued to crew members including:
    • Aircraft, trains, ships, and motor vehicle drivers
    • Family members of crew members
  • Multiple-entry

Group Visa

  • Issued to tourist group of at least 5 members
  • One official visa notification letter is required

Transit Visa (G)

  • Similar to a tourist visa

You should apply for the visa that is most appropriate to your purpose of travel to China. The length of validity and allowance activities vary depending on the kind of visa. More information about visas is available on the Chinese Embassy website.

Where Should I Apply?

U.S. citizens must apply for a visa at a Chinese Embassy or Consulate General in their State of residence. In general, you don’t need to appear in person unless the consular officer says so.

A friend or visa processing agency can submit the completed forms and the necessary supporting documents. An appointment is not required, and applications are not accepted by mail.

Required Documents And Processing Fees

Required documents and processing fees vary depending on the visa you are applying for. A full list of required documents and processing fees is available at the Chinese Embassy website.

How Long Does The Visa Application Process Take?

Applications are usually processed within four days, though the embassy recommends applying at least one month in advance. An express service is available for an additional fee.

What Is The 72 Hour Visa-Free Transit Program?

The 72 Hour Visa-Free Transit Program allows visitors from 53 countries to enter 18 Chinese cities without a visa.

The following 53 countries and regions will be given a visa-free stay up to 72 hours while transiting via Beijing Capital Airport, Shanghai Pudong Airport, Shanghai Hongqiao Airport, and airports of Guangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing, Shenyang, Dalian, Harbin, Xi’an, Guilin, Kunming, Hangzhou, Wuhan, Tianjin, Qingdao, Nanjing, Changsha, and Xiamen.

The countries granted the visa-free stay for 72 hours are:

Schengen Agreement Countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland

Other European Countries: Russia, United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, Belarus, Monaco

American Countries: United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile

Oceania Countries: Australia, New Zealand

Asian Countries: Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar

Passengers require an onward ticket to a third country departing within 72 hours. The passenger must also depart from the same airport they arrived at. Passengers can apply for the program on arrival at the airport in cities participating in the program.

Further Warnings

A valid Chinese Entry Visa is not a guarantee to enter China. The Chinese Border Control Authority decides who enter China at the port of entry. This is done in accordance with Chinese Laws and Regulations.

Your passport must be valid for at least six months from the date of arrival. In addition, you must have at least two blank pages.

How to Go About Getting a Business Visa to Afghanistan

Kabul, like any world capital, is a thriving city that a lot of Americans find themselves locating to for work. In order to enter Afghanistan for business, travelers must provide a valid business visa as well as a passport. If potential work seekers or travelers fail to comply with the requirements, his/her passport will be confiscated. Also, he/she must pay a $100 fine. So, be sure you know what you need before you get a Business Visa to Afghanistan.

Afghanistan isn’t handing out business visas to just anyone. Applicants must prove their legitimacy for wanting to obtain the business visa.  As well as proving their employer and purpose for the trip. Due to the fact that employees must be secured prior to arriving in Kabul, most companies and agencies provide housing for their employees. There are many perks to choosing to work in Afghanistan. To begin, you must request the Afghanistan Business Visa Application Kit. The following sections will provide more specific requirements you will need to complete it correctly.

Afghanistan Business Visa Requirements

  • A valid passport and business visa are required for travel to Afghanistan.
  • Your passport must be signed by you and must be valid for 6 months beyond your stay in Afghanistan. U.S. Citizens need to have at least one-page blank for an Afghanistan visa stamp.
  • Please note the “amendment pages” in the back of the passport book are not suitable for Afghanistan visas. Citizens from Los Angeles must have 2 blank passport pages face to face for entry.
  • Two copies of the Afghanistan Visa Application Form, one signed and one copy. Download here: Afghanistan-Visa-Application-Form-English
  • 1 recent 2 x 2 passport type photograph. This means it must be in color, with the subject in a front view, no glasses, with a plain/white background. For more photo requirements click here. Another option is to upload this photo when you place your order.
  • You must provide a business cover letter. This consists of an original, signed a letter from the employer or sponsoring company in the US. It must be on company letterhead introducing you (the applicant for the visa) including a statement regarding your employment status or position in the company. Another requirement is to include the applicant’s passport number. If you are a government contractor it must be explicitly stated in the letter. Your letter must state your purpose of visit to Afghanistan and formally request the Afghanistan visa.
  • Detailed contact information in Afghanistan as well as stating who will be financially responsible for you (the applicant) while in the country.
  • Typically only single entry Afghanistan visas are granted at the end of this. If the applicant presents approval from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Afghanistan then they may receive a multiple entry visa.

Afghanistan Entry Visa Option

An Afghanistan Entry Visa is another option. The process is as follows:

  • You and/or your employer should write a formal letter explaining your situation and outline why you arrived in Afghanistan without a visa.
  • You will take this letter to the Consular Section at the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).
  • The MFA will draft a letter to the Foreign Relations Department of the Ministry of Interior (MOI).
  • The General Police Office will then give you a letter addressed to the Border Police Office at Kabul International Airport. This process may take 2 weeks or more to complete.
  • Then you will bring this letter to the airport along with 2 passport sized photos to the Border Police Office. You will fill out forms and at this time you will pay the $100 fine.
  • This process only allows you to be in Afghanistan for 15 days. If you decide to stay longer you have two options. You can apply for a tourist visa or a multiple entry visa at the General Passport Office, Foreigners’ Visa Section.

In general, traveler’s are warned to expect inconsistencies in the Afghan entry/exit control process. It is far better to be over prepared in these types of situations. There are hefty visa expiration fines as well. If a visa expires, the traveler must pay $2 per day for the first month and $5 per day for the second month of overstaying their visa. After two months of this, the traveler must pay a $210 fine and is subject to deportation.

Business travel to Afghanistan can be very alluring to many American companies and employees. Afghanistan business opportunities are growing more every year, so protect your time and financial investments: make sure you apply for your business visas to Afghanistan early and accurately!

Cheap Visa Photo Online gives More Spending Money for Vacations

Traveling around the world is an adventure worth taking. With an almost infinite list of possible places to explore, who knows what stories you’ll have to tell afterward! Though chartering through different and interesting countries outside the norm is exciting, sometimes preparing for the trip is a nightmare. As with any big event planned in life, it takes a bit of planning and documentation to be able to leave your home country. Who knows, perhaps you’re a traveler which acts at the last minute or one who plans every scrutinizing detail leading up to departure. No matter which type of adventurer you are, there are a few key points that even the last minute wanderer must take into account: visas.

Size of Visa Photo

visa photosDepending on which country you reside in or are venturing off towards, a visa could be unnecessary. In the instance it is vital for a smooth international crossing, you may be wondering how to obtain one and what exactly is necessary for this stamp of approval. First off, receiving a visa is not nearly as tedious or difficult as sending in for a passport. Thanks to more modern technologies and countries adopting these faster, conventional methods, a visa is almost as easy as chugging down a smoothie, minus the brain freeze.

No matter the final destination, every visa has one aspect in common: a photo. Keep in mind, however, citizens of certain countries, such as the US, may not need a photo as a visa is electronically place into a passport. It also depends on the country visited. If you are traveling to a new land which requires a physical visa and photo, there are some simple tricks and tips for complying with regulations:

Mail-in Visa Photos:

Believe it or not, there are countries still requiring mailing in a visa request. This requires an application and submission for photos. Though different nations have a variety of requirements, for the most part, visa photo requirements are generally the same.

  • 2×2 is your lucky number to remember. Generally, the photo must be 2×2 inches.
  • Plain, white backgrounds are the rule of thumb. If taking a picture at home, be sure to stay away from any pattern wallpaper.
  • No thick-rimmed glasses, hats or smiles. Take it seriously, no pun intended.
  • Print out on photo paper. Regular printing paper is too thin and ink bleeds through. For good measure and to keep the process from slowing down, use gloss.
  • One shot per person. This may seem trivial, but family portraits are not acceptable for everyone in the family travel. Each person, including children, must be photographed separately.
  • Lighting. The biggest mistake made on visa photos taken at home or even by a professional (rarely) is having poor lighting. Be sure the photo isn’t underexposed or overexposed. Double check the shine on your forehead. If it’s a burning white spot, try again.

Online Visa Photos:

Adding onto the short list above, taking photos and submitting them online has a few added bonuses to pay attention for:

  • Dimensions. Whether you’re a computer guru or someone who has trouble texting, submitting photos online require strict dimensions and sizes of the photos. On the average photo, it requires a 600×600 minimum pixel length and width and a maximum of 1200×1200.
  • All photos must be JPEG format! A few sites may accept others, but the general consensus is JPEG as it’s most widely recognize and use. Be safe, use JPEG.
  • Size. Again this depends on the country, however, small photo size is what’s desired. No bigger than 240 KB.
  • Color. All photos no matter where you are going MUST BE in color. Black and white are absolutely unacceptable.

Now that you have a decent grip on how to fancy up your visa photos, the questions arise: Where to go for a visa photo?

First off there are pros and cons to both online and face-to-face. UPS and USPS are two of the more favored places to have a picture taken. Even chain stores such as Walgreens offer passport/visa photo services. One of the benefits of having the professionals take care of it is exactly that, they take care of it. You don’t worry about dimensions or background color. It’s finished. However, a small downfall is the cost. Prices range from $10-$20 per person. Plus if you don’t like the photo, you have to pay to retake.

On the other hand, online has much more perks than a traditional route of USPS. Getting a visa photo online is simple and easy, especially with. Unlike leaving your house searching for a store, online offers quick processing and allows you to submit your own photos taken at home. It saves on time and money for those up in the wee hours of the night planning a vacation. The requirements are much easier than anything previously mentioned. Simply take a selfie with your full face showing and some decent lighting and the rest if taken care of. Now you don’t have to sweat becoming compliant with regulations, the work is done by professionals. Plus, it’s lighter on the wallet. Depending on the site, a few bucks is all you pay. Mypassportphotos.com offers photos for as little as $.99 per photo! That’s a better deal than heading to a store.

Give visa photo online a try and you may never go back to the snail mail way again!