Recently, I flew from Toronto to Bangkok and had a 13-hour layover in Shanghai, China.
After booking my tickets to Bangkok, I went about researching the transit requirements through Shanghai. I was pleased to find out that – citizens of most countries transiting through Shanghai from Country A to Country B, may be eligible for a 24-hour transit without a visa. Citizens of select countries can also get a 144 hr transit without visa.
Most countries are eligible for the 24-hour TWOV of China except the countries listed below:
Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Oman, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Thailand, Turkey, Turkmenistan, and Yemen.
Holders of passports of these 53 countries are eligible for 144-hour transit without a visa(TWOV):
United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia (FYROM), Albania, Belarus, Monaco, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, United Arab Emirates, Qatar.
Please see, the rules of TWOV are always changing. So, please confirm with the airline or embassy before you leave.
Depending on the length of the line, you may have to wait an hour or more. Hand in your passport, connecting flight information, arrival card and fingerprint receipt to the border control agent. On approval, the agent will stamp your passport with a 24/144 hr visa-free stamp. He/she will also give the departure section of your arrival card back to you. Keep this with you safely. You have to give it to the officer at passport control on your way out of Shanghai.
Please note, your entry into China is at the sole discretion of the immigration officer. So, for whatever reason, he/she may deny your entry into China and allow you to remain airside at the airport.
If your layover in Shanghai is during the night or if you simply want to rest during your layover instead of seeing Shangai, then I have an excellent solution for you.
If your layover is during the day, you can go downtown and see the city. If your layover is during the night, then check out these airport hotels near Shanghai Pudong Airport that are very convenient for a traveler.
Have a fantastic time on your Shanghai Layover!
Disclaimer: The author is not responsible for any losses/damages that may occur in case of any inaccurate information.
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