China Tourist Visa for South Africa Citizens: Apply for the China Visa Now
iVisa | Updated on Aug 10, 2023

Guilin China Landscape

China is an enchanting destination offering a splendid cultural legacy and awe-inspiring natural beauty. South African nationals who want to explore China will require a tourist visa to enter the country, and we can help.

Although obtaining a China Tourist Visa, also known as the China Visitor Visa, can be perplexing and time-consuming. Our team at iVisa aims to make applying for a China Visitor Visa from South Africa more accessible and convenient.

Whether you are traveling to China for leisure or business, we are here to explain the prerequisites for obtaining a China Tourist Visa and the necessary steps to procure one. Here is everything you need to know about the China Tourist Visa application process.

What is the China Tourist Visa?

The China Tourist Visa, also known as the L Visa or China Visitor Visa, is an official document that permits South African nationals to visit China for non-business purposes.

The China Tourist Visa must be obtained before your travel date, and the approval is based on various factors like the purpose of your trip and the length of your stay, which are determined by the Chinese embassy or consulate.

The good news is that applying for a China Tourist Visa is much easier for foreign passport holders, including South Africans, especially if you apply online with us. Our experts will guide you through the entire application process. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your China trip today!

China Tourist Visa Types and their Validity Period

There are many China tourist visas to choose from when applying through iVisa:

  • Single-entry visa: valid for 90 days after issued and allows stays of up to 30 days Per Entry.

  • Double-entry visa: valid for 180 days after issued and allows stays of up to 30 days Per Entry.

  • Multiple-entry visa: valid for 1 year after issued and allows stays of up to 60 days Per Entry.

Do South African Citizens Need a Visa for China?

If you're a South African citizen planning a trip to China, you may wonder whether you need a visa to enter the country. The answer is yes. South African citizens need a visa to visit China for tourism or other non-business purposes.

Eligibility for a China Tourist Visa from South Africa

As a South African citizen, you can apply for a China Tourist Visa to visit China for tourism or non-business purposes. However, there are specific requirements that you must meet to be eligible for a visa.

China Tourist Visa Application: How to Apply in South Africa

To complete your China Tourist Visa application, you will need to follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Complete our simplified and easy online visa application form with your travel details and personal information, such as gender, date of birth, and passport number.

  • Step 2: Pay the iVisa processing fee and submit the required documentation according to the instructions and tips you received by email.

  • Step 3: Attend the embassy appointment, submit application documents onsite, and pay the government visa fee. The embassy may accept cash payment or require you to pay directly to the embassy's bank account.

There are three possible locations for your visa interview in South Africa: the Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Pretoria, the Consulate General of the People's Republic of China in Sandton City Office Tower, or the Consulate General of China in Cape Town. Their contact information is available on their site.

Then, simply wait for your visa notification letter, which we will send via email, and prepare to travel!

Apply for your China Tourist Visa today!

China Tourist Visa Requirements for South Africans

To apply for this specific Chinese Visa, you will need the following documents and information:

Necessary Documents for the China Tourist Visa for South African Citizens

  • Copy of your valid passport.

  • A recent passport photo.

  • Travel itinerary, a round-trip airline ticket, and a hotel reservation or an invitation letter issued by your host.

  • Bank statements for the last three months.

  • Work contract or an admission letter issued by the university you're attending. You need to submit bank statements if you are unemployed or retired.

Other documents you may require:

  • If you apply for a visa in a country other than your country of citizenship, you must submit documents proving you are a legal resident there. These can be temporary residence permits valid for your stay in the country, work visas, student visas, medical visas, or permanent residence permits.

  • Chinese citizens residing overseas or those with South African citizenship should submit the following:

  • A copy of your previous Chinese passport. You may need to provide a copy of the previous passport's data page only.

  • Chinese permanent residence permit.

  • Previous Chinese visa page.

China Tourist Visa Requirements for Children from South Africa

If a child is traveling to China, some additional documents are required:

  • An unabridged birth certificate.

  • If only one parent accompanies the child, a copy of the parent's passport who isn't traveling is necessary, in addition to a signed declaration of consent.

China Tourist Visa: Passport Requirements

To obtain a China Tourist Visa, your passport must be valid for at least six months and have two blank visa pages.

If your passport is about to expire or does not have enough blank pages, you must get a renewed South African passport.

If you have a previous visa, you must also make a copy of your last Chinese Visa page.

China Tourist Visa: Photo Requirements

You are required to submit a recent passport photo that is taken against a light background. If you don't have one, let us help you! Our Photo Service enables you to quickly get a new photo that is 100% government compliant online!

Get your Chinese Tourist Visa online now!

China Tourist Visa Cost and Processing Time for South Africans

Currently, we only offer standard processing, which takes up to 30 days from when your visa application form is submitted to the government. However, the cost varies depending on your tourist visa type. Your options are:

  • Single-entry visa, which costs USD $299.99.

  • Double-entry visa, which costs USD $299.99.

  • Multiple-entry visa, which costs USD $163.99.

Note: These prices comprise the Chinese government fee and our processing fee.

China Tourist Visa denied: What should South Africans do?

At iVisa, our team of experts carefully reviews all visa applications and documentation to ensure you have the best chance of approval. Our complete guide, which includes step-by-step instructions and helpful tips and tricks, can further increase your chances of obtaining a China Tourist Visa.

In the unlikely event that your application is rejected due to an error in your application, we will refund the iVisa processing fee, and you can reapply for your China Tourist Visa.

However, if your application is denied for other reasons, you must contact your local Chinese embassy or consulate for more information. Please note that in such cases, you may not be eligible for a refund from iVisa, but this will depend on your individual circumstances.

How to Prepare for the China Tourist Visa Interview in South Africa?

South African citizens planning to travel to China may need to attend an interview at the Chinese embassy or consulate in South Africa to obtain a tourist visa. To help you prepare, we offer a step-by-step guide to the visa application process, including tips on handling difficult sections and a guide to navigating the process when you apply with us.

Here are other things you can do to prepare for your visa interview:

  • Schedule an appointment: Check the embassy's website for available dates and times, and book your appointment as early as possible.

  • Dress appropriately: Dress conservatively in formal or semi-formal attire, and avoid anything too revealing or casual.

  • Be on time: Arrive at the embassy or consulate on time for your appointment, as being late may result in delays or the cancellation of your appointment.

  • Bring all necessary documents: Organize and bring all the required documents, including your passport, visa application form, photographs, and supporting documents.

  • Be honest and confident: Answer the visa officer's questions truthfully and confidently, and be prepared to explain your travel plans, itinerary, financial situation, and reasons for visiting China.

  • Be respectful: Show respect towards the visa officer and follow their instructions, avoiding any arguments or confrontations that could negatively affect your application.

Other travel requirements for South Africans traveling to China

Apart from obtaining a China tourist visa, there are several other requirements that South African citizens need to meet to travel to China:

  • Travel insurance: It is highly recommended to have travel insurance that covers medical treatment, emergencies, accidents, and theft while in China before embarking on your trip.

  • Health declaration: To enter China, South African travelers must complete a health declaration disclosing their travel history, health status, and vaccination records. The document is valid for one entry or exit from China and aims to help better control the spread of COVID-19 and monitor the health status of passengers entering the country. You can apply for a Health Declaration through us.

  • COVID-19 testing: South African travelers must also provide a negative COVID-19 test result before entering China. The test must be taken within 72 hours before the departure time of your flight to China.

  • Customs declaration: When entering China, travelers need to declare any items they are bringing into the country, such as currency, food, or electronics.

It is crucial to carefully review all the requirements and prepare the necessary documents to avoid delays or complications during your trip to China.

Tips for a successful trip to China for South Africans

Panda in a tree image

If you're a South African planning a trip to China, here are some tips and tricks to make your journey more enjoyable:

  • Learn basic Mandarin: While many Chinese people speak English, knowing a few basic Mandarin phrases can be helpful, especially when communicating with locals.

  • Research transportation options: Each city in China has its own transportation system, so be sure to research the best way to get around in each city you visit.

  • Download a VPN: Many popular websites and social media platforms are blocked in China, so downloading a VPN is necessary to stay connected to home.

  • Download useful Chinese apps: Consider downloading popular Chinese apps like WeChat, Didi, and Alipay, which can help you get around and make payments.

  • Get a local SIM card to access the Internet and stay connected while on the go.

  • Be prepared for the weather: China has a varied climate, so check the weather forecast for your destination and pack accordingly. Keep an eye on the air pollution levels; some days, masks will be your best friend.

  • Bring cash: While credit cards are widely accepted, having cash on hand can be helpful for small purchases and in areas where credit card usage is limited. Small bills will also be helpful for purchases from street vendors and tips.

  • Be aware of cultural expectations: China has distinct cultures and customs, so it's essential to be mindful of and respect them. For example, removing your shoes before entering a home or temple in China is customary.

  • Try the local cuisine: Chinese cuisine is diverse and delicious, so try some local dishes. However, be aware of any dietary restrictions or allergies you may have.

  • Plan your itinerary: China has a lot to offer, so plan your itinerary carefully to make the most of your time. Consider including both famous tourist attractions and lesser-known local gems.

  • Be prepared for crowds: China's major cities can get very crowded, especially during peak tourist seasons. Be prepared for long lines and wait times at popular attractions.

By following these tips, South Africans can have a memorable and hassle-free trip to China.

If you need more info about traveling to China for tourism or business, please contact our customer support team anytime via online chat or email us at [email protected]. They are available throughout the day to answer your questions!

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