CVD is not part of the Chinese Embassy, and you can get your visa direct from the embassy cheaper on the slow service. However, CVD will minimise errors and common pitfalls and get you your visa in the shortest time possible.




Tourist Visas for visiting non Chinese relatives without permanent residence - S visa

S1 visa - Single entry for stays of over 90 days - S1 visa;
S2 visa - Single / Double entry for stays of less than 90 days.

This is for visiting relatives who are working or studying in China. The advantage of these visas over a Tourist L visa is that you can get a longer stay. For S1 (stay over 180 days), the relative(s) to be visited are limited to spouses, parents, parents in law, children under 18. S2 visas are slightly broader and for visiting a spouse, mother and father in law, sons and daughters, son and daughter in laws, siblings, grandparents and grandchildren.

Always bear in mind that the type of visa and length granted for each stay is always at the discretion of the Chinese Embassy, which will grant you the visa they deem is most appropriate as determined by all the circumstances (especially the documentation in hand).


Look at our PRICING page to see how much each costs.

NB If you pay by cheque, we will wait for the cheque to clear before we send your passport back (usually 5 - 7 working days)


boatSelect the type of visa you want to find out about:

This "S" visa is for visiting relatives who are temporarily in China, perhaps for work or study purposes for example. To get your application going, you will need::

1. Passport plus a photocopy of the photo page in addition - passport must have two blank pages and 6 months remianing validity

2. Digital photo (to be uploaded to the Chinese Visa Centre application form) - there are specific requirements for photos - click here for more information - if the requirements (per the link) are not met, the application may be refused.

3. If you have not opted for our form filling service, email us a copy of the submitted application form for us to check and correct any errors.

4. Relevant fee (click here to see prices)

5. A copy of your permanent residence or work permit for the UK if you are not applying with an EU passport.

6. If you have been to China before, a photocopy of your last Chinese visa.

7. If you used to have a Chinese passport, and now have a foreign passport, and if it is the first time you are applying for a visa, you need to send an copy of the Chinese passport plus a photocopy of the data page of the passport. If you have had previous Chinese visas but they are in an old passport, you need to send us a copy of the Chinese passport and a photocopy of the data page, the photo page, and of the previous Chinese Visas.

8. Invitation letter from the family member you are visiting. You will need to send a photocopy of the inviter's passport and Chinese residence permit. See our Blog post about invitation letters.

9. For any child under 18 going to China, the following documentation is now required: Both parents to sign the Chinese Visa application form; copy birth certificate; copy of passport of both parents. This is regardless of where the child was born.

10. Document showing how you are related e.g. marriage certificate (copy acceptable). This document will have to be legalised. We can help with the legalisation - click here to see more about our legalisation service.

11. If you are applying for a visa with a stay duration of more than 90 days (S1 visa), the inviter's Chinese resident visa must have more than 6 months' validity at the time of your application.

Remember: when you submit your application online to the Chinese Visa Centre, DON'T book an appointment for fingerprints - just use our daily fingerprinting / submission slots!



Not using CVD to get your Chinese visa could be an expensive time consuming mistake. Here's what you need to be careful if you DIY without CVD:

  1. If you make any mistakes on your application form, you won't find out straight away. You will find out at your fingerprint appointment and be turned away and you will have to start the process again.
  2. You might not be able to get a convenient date for fingerprinting if you DIY, whereas with CVD, you can take advantage of one of our daily submission / fingerprinting slots - our experienced staff will meet you there and assist you through the process.
  3. You'll spend time waiting around the Chinese Visa Centre, despite having an appointment.
  4. The Chinese Visa Centre do not return passports on their Express service so you will have to come yet again to the centre to pick up your passport


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Don't forget that we offer pick up and delivery by courier.

Call us on 0207 436 9156 for a quote or email us on

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Chinese Visa Direct Limited is a company which was registered in March 2005 in England and Wales no:5482936