X1 and X2 Chinese Student Visa

Chinese Student Visa:

The X visa, the Chinese student visa, is issued to foreigners who come to China for further studies or field research. As an international student wishing to study in China, you must apply for a student visa at least one month before your arrival. The type of visa you use depends on the length of your studies.

Chinese student visas can be divided into two types:

X1 visa: This type of visa is intended for undergraduate and postgraduate students whose study abroad programs last six months to five years.

X2 visa: This visa type provides a short-term option for those who have enrolled in courses of less than six months in duration.

For international students, it is mandatory to find an organization that is authorized to offer internships or courses to foreigners to submit a JW201 or JW202 form with an admission letter.

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Chinese Student Visa Requirements and Documents:

1. Passport:

The applicant's original passport is valid for at least six months and contains at least one blank page.

2. Application form:

A truthfully and accurately filled Chinese student visa application form.

3. Recent photo:

Glue an up-to-date color photo in passport size with a full face, front view, hatless, and in front of a simple light background on the application form.

4. Admission notice:

Original and duplicate of the Chinese school or university letter of admission.

5. Form JW201 or JW202 - only for X1 application:

Original and duplicate the approved application JW201 or JW202 form for a foreign student visa.


1. Since US students can now apply for an X1 visa for five years, their passports should be valid for at least one year when requesting the 5-year X1 visa.

2. Form JW201 or JW202 can be obtained from the school or university you want to enroll in. The JW201 form is issued to international students or sponsored by Chinese government scholarships, while the JW202 form is for self-sponsored overseas students.

How to Apply for a Chinese X Visa:

1. You can apply in person to the Chinese Embassies, Consulates, or China Visa Application Center (CVASC) office.

2. Or you hire another person (e.g., relatives, friends), a visa agency, or a travel agency for you if you cannot come in person. A power of attorney is not required.

3. Mail applications are rejected by most consulates or Chinese embassies but accepted in many CVASCs.

4. In most embassies and consulates, it is unnecessary to make an appointment. However, if you need to apply for CVASC, you may need to schedule an appointment online through CVASC's website.

Processing Time:

The systematic processing time is four business days. If you want to collect your visa earlier, express and rush services are available.

Express Service: 2-3 business days processing; an additional US $20 will be charged.

Rush Service: 1 business day processing; an additional US $30 will be charged.

Chinese Student Visa Fees:

The X visa fee is the same as other Chinese visas. Since the X1 visa only has a single entry and Chinese embassies and consulates rarely issue multiple entries X2 visas, we only list the fees for the single and double entry X visa here as a reference.

Chinese X Visa Type US Citizens Australian Citizens Canadian Citizens UK Citizens 
Single Entry US 140 AUD 109.5 CAD 142 GBP 151
Double Entries US 140 AUD 139.5 CAD 142 GBP 151

Working in China while Studying:

You are not allowed to work with the X visa. However, part-time work and off-campus internships can be approved. However, you must first get permission from the Chinese immigration authorities and your university. You will also need to go to a police station to stamp your visa with "part-time work."

About This Author

Philip Diack is Founder and Managing Director of Passports and Visas.com, a national passport and travel visa service with offices in Atlanta, Miami, Washington, DC, NYC, Denver and San Francisco.

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