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Visa & Residence Permit

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A student "X" visa will automatically expire in 30 days upon arrival in China (see entry stamp).  

In China, the Visa Center of the Police is equivalent to the Immigration Bureau in some other countries.  

Visa expiration is considered breaking the Immigration Law and will lead to fines (RMB 500 a day, 5000 Yuan maximum) and penalties (5-10 days detention, and even repatriation).

There are some simple steps to ensure that your stay in China remains valid:

1. Check in with International Office in the Welcoming Week.

2. Report your residence/or any change of address to the nearest police station within the given time limit.

3. Keep your passport valid.

4. Maintain full-time study and do not seek employment without a "Z" (work) visa.

5. Apply for a Residence Permit, which is equal to a multi-entry visa, prior to the expiration date of your X visa.

6. Timely departure or change status.

For details, please read through the following items:

1. The Welcoming Week

To finish visa-related paperwork before class begins, we require international students to arrive at CPU betweenAugust 27 and Sep. 1, the Welcoming Week.

Feedback from previous years show that students who arrive later than Sep.1 missed out important guidance and services provided by the university.

No on-campus residence or facility is provided to students who arrive prior to the Welcome Week, so we suggest students who come too early seek for alternative accommodation in a hotel qualified to host foreigners.

2. Report Residence

All incoming international students and their family members (including those who studied elsewhere in China) must register with the police station closest to their residence within 24 hours upon arrival, and fill out theTemporary Form for Residence.

Any change of address shall also be reported to the nearest police station within 10 days after moving.

Staying without registration is considered illegal.

Required documents: Passport, one photocopy of passport.

Transportation Guide:

Students living on Jiangning campusStudents living on Xuanwumen campus

科学园(方山)派出所Kexueyuan Police Station (aka Fangshan)

Not accessible by subway or bus

Take a taxi or ride a bicycle along 弘景大道 Hongjing Ave.

Turn left at the entrance of University Park 江宁大学城入口

The police station is under the highway bridge.

鼓楼公安分局 Gulou District Police Station

Take #47 bus from Hunan Road Station 湖南路站 to Jiasheng Garden 佳盛花园站. The police station is under the bridge, on the west side of the river.

3. Keep your passport valid

A passport is issued to a citizen by its nation. Any alteration on the passport will make it invalid.

The expiration date of a passport is usually on the same page of the photo ID.

When a passport expires, the attached visa/residence permit expires, too.

For renewing your passport, contact the embassy/consulate of your country at least 1 month before the expiration date. If they cannot mail it back in time, student shall ask the embassy/consulate to issue an official letter to waive student's responsibility and avoid penalties.

When getting a new passport, student may ask the International Office to issue an official letter, and modify their Residence Permit with the Visa Center. See Item 5 for details.

Passport SampleTemporary Residence Form

4. Maintain Full-time Study and Do not Seek Employment without a "Z" work visa

Students absent from class or laboratory for accumulately 3 weeks will lose their student status and the student visa will be cancelled.

The Immigration Law forbids any foreigner to seek employment without Z work visa. Illegal employer and employee will both be fined.  

Self-funded students and their dependents must show adequate financial support in order to study and live in China.

5. Visa and Residence Permit

Chinese VisaEntry Stamp

5-1. How to understand your visa:

1. All full-time student whose study period is more than 6 months must hold a "X" (student) visa to enter China.

2. No matter what you see for this item, student must register at CPU between August 27 and Sep.1.

9. If you see a “000” on this item, it means the X visa will expire in 30 days upon arrival.

10. The city of Chinese embassy in your country.

12. Visa number.

Entry Stamp is red and oval. It shows the date and port of arrival. For example, 浦东means Shanghai, 白云means Guangzhou.

5-2. Health Certificate

First-time Residence Permit applicants must apply for a Health Certificate at Jiangsu International Travel Hygiene Center with your: Passport, original health certificates of your own country’s (if those certificates are approved by the center, you only need to pay about 60 Yuan. If not, you need to go through the Physical Examination and pay about 300 Yuan), and two 2-inch photos.

Tel: 52345700, Opens Mon-Fri. 8:30-11:00AM

Notice 1: This physical examination is for visa extension only, independent from the university physical exam which is required for on-campus medical care.

Notice 2: Physical Examination is only given in the morning, don’t have anything for breakfast, including water. The Health Certificate will be issued in about 3 working days and only in the afternoon.

5-3. First time Applying for a Residence Permit

When you receive your Health Certificate, you may then apply for Residence Permit at Nanjing Visa Center (Opens Mon-Sat.), window 16-18, and make payments at the bank counter in the lobby. The Residence Permit will be issued in 7 days, during which your passport will be kept in the Visa Center.

Map Directions for Visa Center

三元巷洪公祠1号 南京市公安局出入境管理处 地铁张府园站 #1 Sanyuanxiang, Nanjing Public Security Bureau, subway Zhangfuyuan Station

For convenience concerns: students on Jiangning campus may also apply for Residence Permit at Jiangning District Admin & Service Center.

Transportation Guide to Hygiene Center

#1 Baixia Road, take subway #1 to Zhangfuyuan Station and cross the street.


#1 Sanyuanxiang, take subway #1 to Zhangfuyuan Station and walk about 10 min.

江宁区行政服务中心 Jiangning District Admin & Service Center

Take #19 bus from CPU east gate/south gate 药大东门/正门 to Admin & Service station行政服务中心站. Takes about 40 min.

Required documents for first-entry applicants:

1.Temporary Residence Form (printed and stamped by local police)


3.Two photocopies for: passport page and Visa page

4.Letter of Visa Extension (Issued by International Office)

5.Health Certificate (from Hygiene Center)

6.Yellow page of your JW201/202 (Issued by International Office). Transferred student reminder: If the yellow page has already been submitted to the previous university, ask for a photocopy of Ministry of Education offical letter from the International Office.

7.Admission Notice (Issued by International Office)

8.A completed application Form with 2-inch photo (available at the lobby of Visa Center and the International Office)

9.Application fee:200 (for modification), 400 (<=364 days), 800 (365 days -3 years) or 1000(more than 3 years))

*China gives some countries a discount by charging less for a 0-entry Residence Permit. Student may check with the police for details.

Residence PermitApplication Form

5-4. Extending Residence Permit

Required Documents

1.Temporary Residence Form of your current address  (printed and stamped by nearest local police)


3.Two photocopies for: passport page (for modification: old and new)

4.Letter of Visa Extension (Issued by International Office)

5.A completed application Form with photo (available at the lobby of Visa Center and the International Office)

6.Application fee:200 (for modification), 400 (1 day to 364 days), 800 (365 days to 3 years) or 1000 (more than 3 years))

*China gives some countries a discount by charging less for a 0-entry Residence Permit. Student may check with the police for details.

CSC scholarship students will be given an extension to: July 15 of the year of graduation, because CSC issues half-month stipend.

Self-funded student: the time of extension varies according to the student's payment and will not exceed January 31th (Fall semester) or July 31th (Spring semester).

The International Office is obliged to report the police and cancel the visa/residence permit of those who fail to pay within the time limit and those who lose their full-time student status.

5-5. Dependents

"Dependent" means husband/wife and children only. Parents and brothers/sisters are not considered dependents.

To apply for first-entry "L" (travel) visa for dependents: Must provide a photocopy/scan of marriage certificate authorized by the Chinese embassy in your country, or Birth Certificate issued by a hospital, then ask for a Letter of Extension from the International Office. This letter, however, is not a substitute for marriage or birth certificate.

Dependents may apply for a Residence Permit up to two years (not longer than the student’s graduation date) with: original marriage certificate which is authorized by the Chinese Embassy. If the certificate is not authorized, a dependent may only apply for a 3-month residence permit each time, and only twice (for a maximum of 6 months).

6. Timely departure or change status

CSC-funded students who graduate in July (including those who wish to pursue a higher degree at CPU in the following September) shall return to home country before July 15th. Self-funded students shall leave before July 31th. If for some reasons (flights are delayed, embassy closed, such reasons beyond student's control) student want to stay longer in China, the International Office will issue a letter of status change (X to L visa, 1 month maximum) on seeing the student's graduation certificate. Short-term students are not eligible for such a status change.

Those who fail in major exams and cannot get their graduation certificate on time shall contact Office of Undergraduate Teaching Affairs or Graduate School to make an appointment for make-up exams, which usually take place in June or August. Meanwhile, as the study period is finished, student shall go back to own country to avoid visa expiration, and re-apply for visa otherwise.