This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Steve Gempeler and Peter Gulas at Allied Passport & Visa tipped us off to a new visa agreement between the United States and China!

Allied Passport & Visa.
Allied Passport & Visa.

The first 10-year Chinese visas issued to US citizens were issued yesterday, November 12, 2014, at the China visa office in Washington DC. Under the new reciprocal agreement between the United States and China, most short term business and tourist visas will be issued for 10 years.

The announcement was made shortly after President Obama arrived in Beijing for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Economic Leaders’ Meeting. John Kerry summed up the reason for this agreement nicely; “This [agreement] will pay huge dividends for American and Chinese citizens and it will strengthen both of our economies.”

Travel leniency between the US and China most recently began in early 2013 when Americans could visit select major cities in China on a 72 hour visa free visit. Now, with China visas being increased from six months (for most business visas) or one year (for most tourist visas) to ten years, the demanding application process will be at the very least, less frequent.

How to apply for a China Visa

An example of a China visa.
An example of a China visa.

Although the terms of longevity have changed for China visas, the procedure has not. US Citizens are required to have their documents and passport submitted by hand to the Chinese consulate in their jurisdiction. Due to security concerns, the China embassy has decided not to allow applicants to mail in their applications. Therefore, if you live a significant distance from your local consulate you can always hire a visa service to hand deliver your application for you. We recommend using Allied Passport & Visa. Allied does all the visa and passport work for TPG staff and offers a discount for their readers. It is important to note also that the Washington D.C. visa office does not enforce jurisdiction, so if you’d like to use Allied they can process your visa no matter which state you reside in.

You may have heard the visa process is daunting, but if you take a look at each bullet point requirement on their China visa page, it is relatively painless to gather:

Tourist Requirements for China Visas:

China visa application example

New policies are changing requirements when traveling to China.
New policies are changing requirements when traveling to China.

Applications must be typewritten. Hand written applications will not be accepted by the embassy.

  • One completed China visa application. Save to your desktop before filling.
  • One passport type photo
  • Actual passport valid six months beyond trip completion and side by side blank visa pages
  • One copy of flight itinerary from airline (required)
  • Non-USA passport holders must provide your US Visa and I-94 or original green card
  • One Allied Passport & Visa order form

The big question floating around the internet at the moment is: Will your China visa continue to be valid if your passport expires first? While there doesn’t seem to be any official word on this yet, our guess is that since unexpired US visas are not considered void after your passport has expired China will reciprocate this allowance.

One, final note and also a bit of trivia. There are only two countries in the world (well maybe three now) whose visas are considered valid if in an expired passport. They are the United States and Brazil. Simply travel with your new passport and your old expired passport with the unexpired visa and you’ll be granted entry.

Do you have any questions about the new China visa policy?

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Up to $200 for Uber rides annually. Credit and Uber VIP status available to Basic Card Member only.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on eligible hotels booked on
  • As a Platinum Card Member, you can enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.