Passport and Visa Information

Admitted Student Information


The Beijing Center must submit your passport number, your full name as it appears on your passport, and a copy of the information page from your passport to UIBE, the Chinese university where TBC is based, so they can issue you the documentation needed to apply for a Chinese student visa. This is the reason we ask for a photocopy of your passport at the time of application.

If your passport will expire within the next year, check with a Chinese consulate whether they recommend you get it renewed.

If you turned in a copy of your passport application or renewal receipt, please make sure you submit a copy of your passport as soon as you receive it. The Beijing Center cannot apply for your visa application documents from Beijing until you submit this.

Students who are Chinese citizens must also have Permanent Resident status or citizenship status in at least one country other than China in order to be eligible for enrollment for The Beijing Center Semester Program.

Visa Process

All non-Chinese citizens must obtain a visa to enter China. Students studying at TBC for one semester should check off “Short-term study for less than 180 days” as the Major purpose of your visit. Students studying at TBC for TWO semesters should also check off “Short-term study for over 180 days” as the Major purpose of your visit. TBC will help change/extend your visa during your stay in China. Before applying for a visa, you will need a passport (that is valid for at least six months beyond your anticipated departure date from China), plus two documents from our office.

Before applying for a student visa, you will need a valid passport plus three documents from The Beijing Center office in China. You cannot apply for your student visa until you receive the documents and specific instructions from TBC. 

You or someone you trust must go in person to the embassy/consulate both to drop off your visa application and to pick up the visa when it is ready. If it is not convenient for you to travel to the Chinese consulate, you can have a friend or relative visit the consulate on your behalf, or you may wish to use the services of an agent or company that provides visa application support. This is a common practice. To find such service providers, you can do an internet search for “Chinese visa services” or “Chinese visa agents,” and include in your search the name of the city of your area’s Chinese consulate. The Beijing Center is not able to recommend any specific companies, but an internet search should yield several from which to choose.

The General Timeline for VISA process

Application Deadline and documentation sent to Beijing for processing*:

Visa processing at Chinese consulate: 4-5 days for standard processing, if you have to use a visa service please allow for 2-3 weeks for this process to account for shipping time. You can also choose expedited service for an additional fee depending on which consulate you use.  Please note that if you use a service or if you have a friend or family member apply on your behalf when you ship your passport and documents use registered mail or UPS, DHL, etc and make sure you have a tracking number.  Do not put your passport and documents in the regular USPS mail.

Please note if you have travel plans that require your passport and you need your visa documents sooner than the time frame listed please contact TBC to arrange for an early submission date.

*Students who need to receive or renew their passports that have not done so by the program deadline will be submitted to Beijing once they are received. From the point of submission it will be 4-5 weeks until the paperwork from Beijing will be available for the students to apply for their Chinese visa.

Visa application items

Just to give you an idea of what is involved, the list below shows what makes up a visa application:

**f you lose your passport or if it is stolen before you depart new documents will have to be created for your new passport and will also take an additional 3-4 weeks. This is a Chinese Government process and The Beijing Center is limited in its ability to quicken the process.

If you are not a U.S. citizen, or if you have a passport issued from a country other than the U.S., you need to check with the Chinese consulate you will visit for any additional documents that you need in order to get your student visa.

Please contact [email protected] for more detailed visa information.