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Miaminice

Shanghai/China 144 hour visa free transit explained

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Thanks........... And we even booked a tour for the two days we are in port......

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Posted (edited)

Our Princess cruise in 2020 begins in Tokyo and stops in Shanghai for a day (7 am to 9 pm)  and then later in Xiamen for (7am to 3 pm).  It then ends in Hong Kong and we fly home. (U.S.)

 

I've been researching visa requirements, and it's become frustrating because Princess representatives seem to not know, and/or they contradict each other when we call.

 

After reading this thread and several calls with Princess, here is what I believe.   Can anyone please verify these points?

 

1. When he embark in Tokyo, we will not need a Chinese visa.

2.  If we stay on the ship in Shanghai and Xiamen, we do not need a visa.

3.  If we purchase an excursion directly with Princess's own excursions, they take care of our visa so we don't need one as long as we stay with a Princess official excursion.

4.  If we want to explore Shanghai and Xiamen on our own, then we DO need a visa in advance.

5.  When we disembark in Hong Kong, we plan to go straight to the airport, so we don't need a visa.

 

After my research, I was pretty sure that those points were accurate.  However, we recently found this article about a couple who had no visa: 

 https://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/news/elderly-couple-kicked-off-cruise-ship-for-lack-of-necessary-visas/ar-BBQfj35

 

So now we are back to being unsure...

Edited by CTOM

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, CTOM said:

Our Princess cruise in 2020 begins in Tokyo and stops in Shanghai for a day (7 am to 9 pm)  and then later in Xiamen for (7am to 3 pm).  It then ends in Hong Kong and we fly home. (U.S.)

 

I've been researching visa requirements, and it's become frustrating because Princess representatives seem to not know, and/or they contradict each other when we call.

 

After reading this thread and several calls with Princess, here is what I believe.   Can anyone please verify these points?

 

1. When he embark in Tokyo, we will not need a Chinese visa.

2.  If we stay on the ship in Shanghai and Xiamen, we do not need a visa.

3.  If we purchase an excursion directly with Princess's own excursions, they take care of our visa so we don't need one as long as we stay with a Princess official excursion.

4.  If we want to explore Shanghai and Xiamen on our own, then we DO need a visa in advance.

5.  When we disembark in Hong Kong, we plan to go straight to the airport, so we don't need a visa.

 

After my research, I was pretty sure that those points were accurate.  However, we recently found this article about a couple who had no visa: 

 https://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/news/elderly-couple-kicked-off-cruise-ship-for-lack-of-necessary-visas/ar-BBQfj35

 

So now we are back to being unsure...

 

From my understanding you are doing Japan, China and then China again so the 144 transit will NOT work.  You will need a real China visa.  Staying on the ship is not an option.   I would think you will not be allowed on the ship.  Hong Kong doesn't require a visa.

Edited by Betty in Cozumel

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43 minutes ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

 

From my understanding you are doing Japan, China and then China again so the 144 transit will NOT work. 

 

Yes, I was concerned about that.  Two different stops in China (with one At Sea day in between) seems to throw me off.

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1 hour ago, CTOM said:

Our Princess cruise in 2020 begins in Tokyo and stops in Shanghai for a day (7 am to 9 pm)  and then later in Xiamen for (7am to 3 pm).  It then ends in Hong Kong and we fly home. (U.S.)

 

I've been researching visa requirements, and it's become frustrating because Princess representatives seem to not know, and/or they contradict each other when we call.

 

After reading this thread and several calls with Princess, here is what I believe.   Can anyone please verify these points?

 

1. When he embark in Tokyo, we will not need a Chinese visa.

2.  If we stay on the ship in Shanghai and Xiamen, we do not need a visa.

3.  If we purchase an excursion directly with Princess's own excursions, they take care of our visa so we don't need one as long as we stay with a Princess official excursion.

4.  If we want to explore Shanghai and Xiamen on our own, then we DO need a visa in advance.

5.  When we disembark in Hong Kong, we plan to go straight to the airport, so we don't need a visa.

 

After my research, I was pretty sure that those points were accurate.  However, we recently found this article about a couple who had no visa: 

 https://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/news/elderly-couple-kicked-off-cruise-ship-for-lack-of-necessary-visas/ar-BBQfj35

 

So now we are back to being unsure...

 

vis.jpg.959ac790995f9fc8ae97b3dd32334fcf.jpgSorry.    I also forgot to include this image.   It's a message from Princess when i log into my itinerary.  The way i read this message, I will not need a visa at all.   But I don't know how much to trust this message!

 

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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, CTOM said:

 

vis.jpg.959ac790995f9fc8ae97b3dd32334fcf.jpgSorry.    I also forgot to include this image.   It's a message from Princess when i log into my itinerary.  The way i read this message, I will not need a visa at all.   But I don't know how much to trust this message!

 

 

If you book a tour with Princess you do not because they are apparently use a certified tour operator. 

 

You can also book a tour with a certified tour company yourself and the can arrange a group visa for you (eg chinahighlights.com).

 

if you want to be completely independent, you‘ll need to apply for a visa.

 

Hong Kong does not require a visa, even if you want to stay for a few days.

Edited by Miaminice

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1 minute ago, Miaminice said:

 

If you book a tour with Princess you do not because they are apparently use a certified tour operator. 

 

You can also book a tour with a certified tour company yourself and the can arrange a group visa for you (eg chinahighlights.com).

 

if you want to be completely independent, you‘ll need to apply for a visa.

 

 

We will definitely book with Princess for that reason.  Missing an excursion and having to stay on the ship is not good, but I can live with that.   Our MAIN concern is not being able to embark in Tokyo or getting kicked off the ship (like in the article link I posted above).

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

Wow.   This is totally different than what has happened in the past.  Good news if it is true.

 

Actually the regulation is in place since 2016 already. But it was hardly ever used.

As much as I understand, Shanghai has to be the first port in China or the stating point of the cruise.
But I would have to read into it... 


You can find info when searching for "15 day visa exemption". This here is quite comprehensible:

https://www.chinahighlights.com/single-city-tour/shanghai/15-day-visa-free-china-travel-by-cruise-from-shanghai.asp

 

@CTOM You can always talk to a good licensed operator like the one mentioned above. They are highly recommendable and very professional. We were thrilled with their service.
For us booking with the cruise line would always be the very last resort. I dislike big groups and following numbers. It is just not the same experience. 

Edited by Miaminice

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Thank you both.   Great to learn from your experiences.  

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We will be flying pre cruise to Japan, THailand and singapore .  We will be arriving on the Princess Sapphire May 02, 2020.  Our plan is to overnight in Shanghai, high speed train the next evening to Beijing.  Two nights in Beijing before flying home to Toronto via Hong Kong.  I am guessing a visa is required.  Any advice.

 

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1 minute ago, chauffeurboy said:

We will be arriving on the Princess Sapphire May 02, 2020.  Our plan is to overnight in Shanghai, high speed train the next evening to Beijing.  Two nights in Beijing before flying home to Toronto via Hong Kong.  I am guessing a visa is required.  Any advice.

 

Yes you will need a proper visa to travel from Shanghai to Beijing.

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Okay so cruising from Shanghai to Shanghai 7 nights going to 3 ports in Japan, will be flying into Shanghai 2 days ahead.  So spending 2 nights , flying to Tokyo day cruise ends.  Flying in from Canada direct, out to Tokyo direct, then direct to New York

What is my scenario?

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8 hours ago, Winesome said:

Okay so cruising from Shanghai to Shanghai 7 nights going to 3 ports in Japan, will be flying into Shanghai 2 days ahead.  So spending 2 nights , flying to Tokyo day cruise ends.  Flying in from Canada direct, out to Tokyo direct, then direct to New York

What is my scenario?

 

I think your first one is okay .....Canada to Shanghai then sail to Japan

 

But I don't think your second visit works.....Japan to Shanghai then fly to Japan.  They don't care about your flight then to NY.  You'd be doing Japan-China-Japan so not valid.  Too bad you're not visiting South Korea as your last stop before returning to Shanghai.

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9 hours ago, Winesome said:

Okay so cruising from Shanghai to Shanghai 7 nights going to 3 ports in Japan, will be flying into Shanghai 2 days ahead.  So spending 2 nights , flying to Tokyo day cruise ends.  Flying in from Canada direct, out to Tokyo direct, then direct to New York

What is my scenario?

You will be fine. Inbound, you use the 144 hour visa-free transit as you are going from Canada-China-Japan and outbound, you use the 24 hour visa-free transit. For the 24 hour transit, it doesn’t matter what country you are going to next as long as you exit Mainland China.

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28 minutes ago, BaikG said:

You will be fine. Inbound, you use the 144 hour visa-free transit as you are going from Canada-China-Japan and outbound, you use the 24 hour visa-free transit. For the 24 hour transit, it doesn’t matter what country you are going to next as long as you exit Mainland China.

 

Not sure I agree as it says a 3rd country.  Japan-China-Japan is not a 3rd country.

 

http://ee.china-embassy.org/eng/tzygg/t1460983.htm#targetText=Under the 24-hour visa,and have a confirmed seat.

 

1. 24-Hour Direct Transit

Under the 24-hour visa-free transit rule, no visa is required for international flight, ship, or train passengers who transit directly through mainland China and will stay for less than 24 hours. Passengers should hold tickets to a third country or region and have a confirmed seat.

Those who transfer in more than one city of China within 24 hours can also enjoy this policy. For instance, if one's trip is Moscow – Lanzhou – Guangzhou – Bangkok and the total time in China is less than 24 hours, the passenger can still enjoy the 24-hour direct transit. But the passenger needs to apply for the temporary entry permit upon his arrival.

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3 hours ago, Betty in Cozumel said:

 

Not sure I agree as it says a 3rd country.  Japan-China-Japan is not a 3rd country.

 

http://ee.china-embassy.org/eng/tzygg/t1460983.htm#targetText=Under the 24-hour visa,and have a confirmed seat.

 

1. 24-Hour Direct Transit

Under the 24-hour visa-free transit rule, no visa is required for international flight, ship, or train passengers who transit directly through mainland China and will stay for less than 24 hours. Passengers should hold tickets to a third country or region and have a confirmed seat.

Those who transfer in more than one city of China within 24 hours can also enjoy this policy. For instance, if one's trip is Moscow – Lanzhou – Guangzhou – Bangkok and the total time in China is less than 24 hours, the passenger can still enjoy the 24-hour direct transit. But the passenger needs to apply for the temporary entry permit upon his arrival.

This seems to be a very complicated area, I guess to be safe I need to get a Visa

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It's not that complicated - TWOV requires two different countries with China as the transit country. A-B-C. B is China. A and C must be different (from each other AND not China). If your immediate country before China is Japan, Japan cannot be the country you go to immediately after China as well. If you flew to HKG or SIN or.....It would be fine.

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