Ten Questions About Visas

You are on the way to China!  Now it’s time to get to work on that visa process.  Though it can be overwhelming, we are here to help and our experienced team can solve any problems we encounter along the way.  Here are some of the most common questions we get:

  1. What kinds of visas are there?  There are a number of different kinds of visas for China but the most common are tourist (L), business (M or F), and a work visa (Z).  The Z visa is the only visa you can legally work on.  While there are some situations where you may enter on a business visa, all employees will be working on a legal Z visa that ENREACH fully sponsors.
  2. How long does it take to collect all the documents for the visa process? The process can vary, but generally takes about six weeks if everything goes very quickly and you encounter no surprises. Note that almost everyone encounters at least one stumbling block so we can’t emphasize enough how important it is to not procrastinate at all. The most important thing to do is to start on the authentications immediately.
  3. Should I wait to send all my documents at once or as I get them? Definitely send them as you get them as the sooner we can review the documents the better.
  4. What does the timeline look like?
    1. Start authentication process – (6 weeks) this takes a few weeks to get the FBI check and then 4-5 weeks to obtain the authentications of a copy of your degree and original FBI check.
    2. Background check – (10 minutes) the order is submitted online.
    3. Reference letter(s) and Medical check – (1-5 weeks) this varies quite a bit depending on your reference and how quickly you can get a doctor’s appointment.
    4. Passport photo and forms – you can get a photo taken at a store and the forms can be filled out quickly so should take just a day or two at most.
    5. Apply for work permit notification – this is done in China and will take up to 4 weeks.
    6. Visa – once the work permit notification is issued you apply for a visa at a consulate/embassy. You can either use an agent or go in person.
    7. Flight – once we have your visa you are ready to get your plane ticket!
  5. I don’t have my actual degree but can get transcripts. Will this work? No, you need the actual diploma and will need to order a copy from your university.   There is no exception to this. If you are graduating soon, contact your registrar to see when the diploma will be issued.
  6. I had a work visa a few years ago and didn’t’ need to do all this. Why do I need to now? Visa changes happen all the time in China, not to mention different regions have varying regulations. Rest assured, we want this process to go as smooth as possible so anything we can do to make it easier, we will.
  7. Can I bring my cat? Our advice is to arrive in China first and then send for your pet. Some teachers have done this successfully, but it is something you need to confirm on your own.
  8. Can I travel before I arrive in China? You have to get the visa in your home country before you depart and in most cases this will happen just shortly before you depart. We are great lovers of travel, and once you have your visa you can do it prior to arrival in China.
  9. Can I arrive in China early to settle in? The day you arrive in China is the day your contract starts, and the date you start earning your salary, so in most cases you have to arrive on the scheduled arrival date.

Any other questions?   Post them in the comments or let your recruiter know.