Two Ways for International Students to Extend Their Stay in China


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This article summarizes for international students the application procedure and materials required for extension of stay in China. International students holding X visa need to know the following tips.
WayⅠ X Visa Extension
X visa extension is usually easy. Normally international students will have their X visa extended by the China universities they study at, and they can also get help from visa service agencies.
1. Current Students
Current students who need their X visa extended must submit the following materials: tuition bills, Current Study Certificate, transcripts and valid passport. Usually the international student office of the university will inform students to prepare for the procedure in advance.
2. Graduated Students
Graduated students cannot apply for X visa extension unless they are enrolled another universities in China. Providing the admission offer and the related documents, they can get their X visa extended.
3. Transfer Students
Besides tuition bills, Current Study Certificate, transcripts and valid passport, a transfer certificate is also need for transfer students.
4. Expired X Visa
International students who hold expired X visas are not allowed to apply for extension, but they can apply for alteration (e.g. L visa) to extend their stay in China. Some visa service companies are able to handle the service like this. The detailed procedure is as follows:
a. Pay the fine. It is required by law that applicants must pay RMB 500 for every expired day when their visa expired for 10 days or above;
b. The visa service companies will help applicants eliminate the “bad record” and get a 15-day valid L visa, which needs to be handled in Hong Kong;
c. When getting the L visa, applicants may apply for extension or alteration.
Note: It costs a lot to get such expired visa service handled.
Way Ⅱ X Visa Conversion
International students who want to alter their X visa have to go back to their own countries for once and then return unless the visa service companies are able to take them to Hong Kong for handling the service.
1. X Visa to F visa
Materials Required:  
a. Valid Invitation Letter. Many visa service agencies are able to handle this. Sometimes students are asked to provide a scanned copy of business license of a Chinese company;
b. Valid passport and two 2-inch passport-sized photos;
c. Students from certain countries are required to provide a Letter of Agreement, which can also be handled by visa service agencies.
The F visa is classified into several types such as 3 months and 1 entry F visa, 6 months and 1 entry F visa and 6 months and 2 entries F visa, etc. Each type has different requirements to applicants:
a. For 1 year and multi entries F visa: Applicants must at least have 8 leaving and entering records;
b. For 6 months and multi entry F visa: Applicants must at least have 3 leaving and entering records;
c. For 3 months and 1 entry F visa: Applicants must at least have 1 leaving and entering record.
Since not many visa service companies can handle this alteration service directly, applicants can first alter their Residence Permit into L visa and then F visa.
Materials Required:
Besides all the materials needed for X Visa to F visa which mentioned above, applicants are required to provide the valid residence permit.
2. X Visa to L Visa
The disadvantage of altering X visa into L visa is that applicants can only get another 1 month stay at most for once and no more extension.
Materials Required:
Graduation certificate, financial certificate (RMB 21000 in Chinese account), accommodation letter, two 2-inch photos

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