I will be visiting the US shortly as a tourist. From there, I have a flight scheduled from San Francisco to Beijing, China. I am on a world tour for about 10 months. In the South American countries I have visited so far I haven't been able to get a Chinese visa as I was not officially staying or living in these countries, but there only as a tourist. Does anyone know if as a tourist passing through the US I can get a Chinese visa? I am Spanish.
Most probably no. Most Chinese consulates in the world take visa applications ONLY from residents. In some cases (it happened to a friend in Singapore), they even restrict what type of visa a foreign resident can apply for.
The only place I know where you can get a Chinese visa as a tourist is Hong Kong. But that would probably require you to change your travel plans...
Note that without a Chinese visa, or another booking out of China within 72 hours, the airline won't let you board your flight. Your best bets are:
- Reroute your trip to HK first, and apply there.
- Book an additional flight to HK, with PEK-HKG within 72 hours of your arrival in PEK. In that case, you get a 72-hour transit visa on arrival.
You can combine options 1 and 2: get a round trip PEK-HKG. Enjoy 72 hours in Beijing. Go to HK. Apply for a tourist visa (get a two-entry visa, might as well), and visit HK while waiting. Go back to PEK, and start visiting China.