I'm a British citizen with only a British passport. I'm in mainland China on exchange, so I arrived with an X1 visa then applied for temporary residency, which expires in July 2024. I'd like to visit Taiwan, probably flying from Shanghai or a city nearby. From what I can find online, British citizens have 90 days visa-free in Taiwan. But I've also found things stating that all residents of China require a special permit from the government to travel to and from Taiwan.

Do I require that permit as a non-citizen temporary resident?

If so (I don't fancy dealing with acquiring it if it's any hassle), can I just travel to an intermediary country on the journey to Taiwan to avoid the permit requirement? Can I travel directly back from Taiwan without the permit or would I need to do the same again?

  • I think the "all residents of China" refers to PRC citizens who are residents of China, and the reason why they use that wording is because dual citizens of the PRC and another country can sometimes be treated as non-PRC citizens by Taiwanese immigration if they live in the country of their other citizenship; a PRC citizen living in China would never be eligible for the exemption.
    – Brian
    Commented Jan 14 at 2:00

3 Answers 3


I'm a native PRC citizen. I'm pretty sure that "all residents of China" refers to PRC citizens here, and the "special permit" means "Exit-Entry Permit for Travelling to and from Taiwan", 往来台湾通行证 or 大通证 for short, which does not apply to foreign citizens. You should be fine travelling visa-free.


According to this official website, UK Nationals holding an ordinary passport are visa-exempt for up to 90 days provided the passport has at least 6 months validity remaining as of the date of entry.

No need for intermediate countries (or regions, such as HK) as was true many years ago.


There is nothing in the various government websites about foreigners from visa-exempt countries to apply for a permit. The only thing you have to do is fill online an arrival card. You can book a return flight Mainland<>Taipei without issues.

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