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When to apply

We suggest you submit your visa application a month before your planned trip to China. If you apply for the visa too early, the visa may have expired when you need to use it. If you apply for the visa too late, you may not have enough time to get the visa.

Normally it takes four working days to process a visa application. However, if applicants can provide proof that there is a necessity of rush service, the officials at the reception can evaluate the situation and make decisions whether you can be granted rush service or not. Pick-up date will be written on the pick-up form.

Where to apply

You need to apply the visa at the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Republic of South Africa:

What type of VISA should I apply?

X1 Visa: Issued to those who intend to study in China for a period of more than 180 days.

X2 Visa: Issued to those who intend to study in China for a period of no more than 180 days.

How to prepare the application materials

1. Basic Documents

  • Visa Application Form and Photo

    One fully completed Visa Application Form with one recently- taken color photo (bare head, full face) against a light background attached.

  • Passport

    Original passport with at least six months of remaining validity and more than 2 blank visa pages. A photocopy of the passport's data page and the photo page if it is separate are also required.

  • Applicants other than South Africans must provide the original and photocopy of your permanent residence permit or other temporary residence permits valid for over 6 months beyond the date of your intended date of arriving in China.

  • If you were a Chinese citizen and have obtained South African citizenship, when applying for a Chinese visa for the first time, you should provide your previous Chinese passport and a photocopy of its data page. When applying for a Chinese visa with a renewed South African passport that does not contain any previous Chinese visa, you should present the photocopy of the previous passport’s data page and the previous Chinese visa page. (If the name on the current passport differs from that on the previous one, you must provide an official document of name change.)

2. Supporting Documents

  • X1 Visa

    (1) Original and photocopy of the Admission Letter issued by a school or other entities in China.

    (2) Original and photocopy of "Visa Application for Study in China" (Form JW201 or Form JW202).

    We kindly remind you that:

    Holders of X1, within 30 days from the date of their entry, apply for foreigners’ residence permits from the exit/entry administrations of local police authority.
  • X2 Visa

    Original and photocopy of Admission Notice issued by a school or other entities in China.

3. Special Requirements for Applicants Under 18 Years

When applying visa for a child under 18 years old, at least one of the parents should come to apply. Agent can submit applications only when the child and the parents' passport are handed in together for visa application. The child's application form should be signed by both of the parents. In case that one of the parent does not travel together, a letter of consent (affidavit) from that absent parent should be attached, along with his/her passport copy. Unabridged birth certificate of the child, or an affidavit from the parents is required as proof of filial relationship.

4. Special Reminder

  • The invitation letter may be in the form of fax, photocopy or computer printout, but the consular officer may require the applicant to submit the original of the invitation letter.

  • If necessary, the consular officer may require the applicant to provide other documents or supplementary materials, or require an interview with the applicant.
  • The consular officer will decide on whether or not to issue the visa and on its validity, duration of stay and number of entries in light of specific conditions of the applicant.

5. Important Notice

  • Notwithstanding that the documents and information required have been furnished, applicants and sponsors may still be required to submit further supporting documents and information in connection with the application(s) when necessary.

  • All documents provided by the applicant should be in English or Chinese, and will not be returned. Please prepare extra photocopies for your own use.

Visa Fees

1 entry visa
2 entry visa
Multiple entry visa valid for 1-6 months
Multiple entry visa valid for one year
Express service fee for the next working day
Express service fee for the third day

The Embassy does not accept cash payment. Applicants are kindly requested to:

  • Deposit fees to the Embassy’s bank account.

  • Make payment through internet transfer.

  • Make payment on collection day using visa/master card at the Embassy.


Opening Hours of the Consular Office:

8:30am-11:30am, Monday to Friday

Hotline: 0027-12-4316537: 2:00pm-4:00pm, Monday to Friday

Contact Information:

  • Address: 225 Athlone Street, Acadia, Pretoria

  • Tel: 012-4316500, ext.6537(2:00pm-4:00pm,Monday to Friday)

  • Fax: 012-4307620

  • E-mail:

  • Visa Office Hours: 08:30-11:30 , Monday to Friday

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