Visas and border crossings forum

Shanghai to ANYWHERE in SE Asia

  • Kassassin

    Joined Travelfish
    9th January, 2012
    Posts: 2

    Hi, I got a REALLY cheap flight to Shanghai (PVG), but I would like to get to Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, or Cambodia.

    What is the cheapest possible way to do this?

    I posted this in the Visa section because I'd rather not have to buy a Chinese visa, and this is posted on the Chinese Consulate website "Citizens holding passports issued by the following nations are not required to obtain a visa given he or she transit by Shanghai and stay up to 48 hours" [US citizens included].

    Any way to swing this?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    #1 Posted: 12/1/2012 - 23:51

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  • caseyprich

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd March, 2010
    Location China
    Posts: 1265
    Total reviews: 53
    Places visited:
    At least 48

    The State Department Says this - my emphasis added:

    TRANSITING CHINA
    : In general, if you are traveling through China en route to another country, you do not need a visa, as long as you stay in China less than 24 hours and do not leave the airport. If, however, you are a transit passenger and have more than one stopover in China, you must exit the transit lounge at the first stop to apply for an endorsement in your passport that permits multiple stops in China. As long as you have a ticket that continues on to an international destination, the endorsement should be routine. If Shanghai Pudong airport is your international transit point, you may stay in Shanghai for 48 hours if you have a valid passport, a visa for your destination, and an onward plane ticket. Make sure you get an endorsement stamp at the immigration desk before you leave the airport.

    As is the case for most situations in China, you may get a bit of a hastle if you try this, but in the end you should be able to leave the airport for a night and come back to catch your flight the next day. I was at the airport last month and the Canadian ahead of me had no trouble, was told he could leave the airport because he had his visa and ticket for onward travel. I'm always afraid to give a 100% answer on anything in China though - as sometimes I go to the same bank and it takes me 5 hours to get a 1/2 hour transaction done because the teller that day doesn't know the rules that the previous teller I've had does - and that can go for any bureaucratic activity in China.

    As well - if you don't plan on leaving the airport at all, then you go directly to transit lounge so long as your next flight is within 24 hours, if you have no desire to check out Shanghai for a night. That's standard procedure. Don't book the flights too closely though, as delays into PVG can be common at certain times of the year, and you don't want to rush about - I'd give myself a minimum 5 hour layover just so I'm not nervous the entire time.


    #2 Posted: 13/1/2012 - 00:53

  • Kassassin

    Joined Travelfish
    9th January, 2012
    Posts: 2

    Thank you very much for your response!

    What if I were to book a flight to Nanning, as there aren't many cheap flights to SE Asia out of PVG, then try to catch a train into Vietnam?

    Would that be allowed if I had a Vietnam Visa?

    I am looking for a way to get from Shanghai to Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, or Laos, on the cheap.

    Thanks again!

    #3 Posted: 13/1/2012 - 01:30

  • caseyprich

    Joined Travelfish
    3rd March, 2010
    Location China
    Posts: 1265
    Total reviews: 53
    Places visited:
    At least 48

    You need an onward travel flight out of China - so I don't think that would work. I'm not sure they'd let you transfer to Nanning without a China Visa, a lot of these rules are for Beijing/Shanghai/Shenzhen transit and when you get to second tier cities the rules often change.

    Have you tried www.ctrip.com to look for cheap tickets originating out of Shanghai?

    #4 Posted: 13/1/2012 - 03:41

  • xan310

    Joined Travelfish
    10th January, 2012
    Posts: 14

    China is a pain when it comes to visa rules. I am going to Thailand and will be stopping in Beijing. I wanted to get out of the airport since I will be in Beijing for 13 hours. Turns out I won't be able to because I need to request a visa in my home country and since I am traveling in Europe I would have to go back to my home country and apply for a visa at the local embassy. Let's say you are an american visiting Spain and decide to visit China. To get a visa you have to go or send your passport back to the US and go or have someone apply for a visa for you. Does anyone know if a non resident of Thailand can apply for a Chinese visa in Thailand?

    #5 Posted: 19/1/2012 - 08:25

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