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This question is specifically about true multiple-entry visas, which for China are valid for six months and allow multiple entries.

This question is not about double-entry visas. In the case of China, these are distinct and I know where and how to get a double-entry visas, but not where and how to get a multiple-entry visa.

In Ho Chi Minh city a month or so ago I found out at the Chinese embassy that they only grant one-month single entry visas, at least to me, an Australian passport holder, though the form and the signs on the wall had fees and conditions for multiple-entry visas. The staff did not give me a clear answer other than that they don't issue multiple-entry visas.

I'm assuming they must issue them to Vietnamese citizens.

Today in Vientiane I found out at the Chinese embassy that they only grant single-entry and double entry visas, at least to me, an Australian passport holder, though the form had a box for a multiple entry visa, which I originally chose. Again the staff didn't give me a clear answer other than that I couldn't get a multiple-entry visa here in Laos.

They were not interested in the printouts scanned from my old passport with previous visa and entry and exit stamps that I'd been told would be needed for a multiple entry visa.

So, do we know for sure whether China only issues multiple-entry visas to citizens of the country where the embassy is, or people with residence status there. Has anybody here been granted such a visa when applying outside their home country? Is there a way we can find out whether it's only citizens from certain countries of embassies in certain countries, or is it just one of those official Chinese mysteries where nobody can really know the answers in advance?

  • Similar older question before we knew that China distinguishes between double-entry and multiple-entry visas: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/19241 – hippietrail May 22 '15 at 8:57
  • Do I correctly assume you are looking for a multiple-entry L-type visa (tourist visa) as an Australian citizen?! – mts Mar 23 '16 at 13:30
  • @mts: Yes. If my next trip is to Asia I'll probably get a Chinese visa at home before I leave, but an answer would still be helpful. – hippietrail Mar 24 '16 at 22:19
  • You can get a multiple entry visa if you can show that you have previously been issued one. – Felicity Mulhall Jul 19 '16 at 1:15
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    I received a multiple-entry 10 year visa (US passport) while in London a year or two ago. I don't remember if I declared myself resident in the UK on the form though. – waiwai933 Aug 1 '17 at 13:16
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So, do we know for sure whether China only issues multiple-entry visas to citizens of the country where the embassy is, or people with residence status there.

Yes, this is true not only for China but for most other countries as well, with very few, very specific exceptions.

In fact, I only know of (personal experience) exceptions granted, but it was for a single entry/exit visa which was granted due to exigent circumstances (a medical emergency); and it required an appeal to the counselor.

As a visitor - you are very lucky to be granted a visit visa, for many nationalities they require you arrange this from your domicile.

  • I think your answer is right in general but do you have any sources for this specific case? Also as the OP reports they do issue single-entry visa for people on the road, I guess the truth is that it depends on the wind of politics of the day, your passport and a good dose of luck and or connections. – mts Jul 20 '16 at 14:19
  • I first edited the answer with specific examples (personal, and of colleagues); but then it was a growing list of embassies and I just deleted that part out. One was China. – Burhan Khalid Jul 20 '16 at 18:33
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I did get a multiple enty visa for China (1 year) while I worked in Malaysia. I have an Irish passport. The condition was that I had to prove that I was a resident while I applied. Without that proof I wouldn't get a multiple entry visa. Incidently, I have visited many Chinese embassies around Asia and have found this one in KL to be the friendliest for what it's worth. Bangkok recently seemed to be chaotic. I think they had new staff lacking in experience.

  • I find the one in Vientiane to be the friendliest of the several I've used. I've heard the one in Luang Phrabang might be pretty nice too. Ho Chi Minh City was chaotic. – hippietrail Aug 2 '17 at 12:01

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