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Frequently Asked Questions


What travel documents do I need to visit China?

To apply for an entry visa from Embassies or Consulates General of the People's Republic of China, visitors must have passports valid at least six months when exiting China and/or the Orient. You can also apply for a visa through Chinapac when making your China tour booking.

Download a copy of the China Visa Application Form and Checklist

What are the China Visa handling costs and what are the Chinese Consulate locations?

Tourist Visa Canadian Passport US Passport
Canadian Resident
US Passport
American Resident
  CAD CAD  
Single Entry 90 200 N/A
Double Entry 120 200 N/A

Processing time of the China Visa is 10 business days unless stated otherwise.  We recommend sending all documents by courier or registered mail.

Above rates do not include the a shipping & handling charge of CAD25 per envelope with a maximum of 4 passports per envelope.  Canadian addresses only.
For envelopes with  5-10 passports, the return shipping & handling fee is CAD35. 
Canadian addresses only.

If you are not purchasing a China package tour from Chinapac International, we can still process your China Visa for an additional charge of CAD 25.

Chinapac does not accept any responsibility for lost, late, or stolen passports that have been sent by courier/mail services.

China Visa Invitation Letter in Chinese CAD 100 per maximum size group of 16.  If your group is more than 16 please contact us. An invitation letter is not required when Chinapac processes your China visa.

China Visa Invitation Letter in English CAD 100 per maximum size group of 16.  If your group is more than 16 please contact us. An invitation letter is not required when Chinapac processes your China visa.

Click here for locations of the Embassies and Consulates General to the People's Republic of China in Canada.

Click here for the locations of the Embassies and Consulates General to the People's Republic of China in the United States.

When is the best time to visit China?

The best time to visit China is in April and May, and September and October when the weather is moderate. June, July and August are hot and humid. In North China, it is about 25 - 28o Celsius and in South China it is about 28 - 35o Celsius. Click here for a Weather Chart. November to March is cool and the rest of the year will be cold in North China, and moderate in South China and Hong Kong.

What is the best way to visit China?

Most visitors join pre-packaged tours. It is the most efficient and cost effective way to see this vast country. Individual travellers may encounter communication and transportation problems when travelling on their own.

What are the health requirements?

Travellers are advised to check with their local Health Unit and/or their Physicians at least 45 days prior to departure as some shots do require 30 days or more to be effective. If you are under Medical Treatment or have a continuing Medical Condition, it is advisable to bring a Medical History with you during your travels.

Note: Tourists are recommended to drink bottled water when they travel in China.

Should I buy any Travel Insurance?

It is highly recommended that all travellers purchase insurance to cover their Medical and Trip Cancellation upon making their deposits.

What kind of food should I expect?

There will be three meals provided as specified on the ChinaPac Package Tour itinerary.

B = American Buffet Breakfast at the hotels or on the Yangtze River cruise.
L = Chinese lunch in a Chinese restaurant. There will be about 8 - 10 persons per table. About 6 - 8 dishes are served, usually consisting of seasonal vegetables, fish, chicken and soup. Beef is limited. If served, beef is usually served shredded with mixed vegetables.  Meals are catered for the North American
clientele.
D = Chinese Dinner in a Chinese restaurant.  Dishes will be similar to Lunch.

Beverages served on each table are: choice of Chinese Tea, Water, one glass of Chinese Beer or one glass of soft drink.

During breakfast there will be a selection of Juices, Coffee and Tea. If you are a coffee drinker, we suggest that you bring with you some dried milk and coffee. Each day a fresh thermos of hot water is provided in your hotel room for your consumption.

Western meals are available at your own expense at the Hotels or Western Restaurants. Be aware that you will pay North American Prices at these Hotels/Restaurants. When you are sightseeing with a group, you need to stay with them for lunch as the restaurants are away from your hotel.

Visitors with special meal requests or food allergies should alert their travel agents so that arrangements can be made. We will try our best to meet with your needs. However, in China some Special Meals might not be available.

Money, Credit Cards, Travellers Cheques and ATM

China's currency is the Renminbi (RMB), usually called the Yuan. Ten Jiao make up one Yuan. At present, the Yuan is worth about CAD $0.18, with slight daily fluctuations. We suggest that you bring Canadian or American Travelers Checks and exchange them at the The Bank of China's exchange desks for foreign currency and travellers cheques at all hotels, airports and others shopping areas. Major Credit Cards are accepted by most hotels and major stores in large cities but not by small local stores in smaller cities. Travellers are advised to pay in Chinese currency when shopping in smaller shops, at restaurants, and in smaller hotels. ATM machines are available at major cities near banks.

What kind of clothing should I bring?

Casual, comfortable clothing (T-shirts, blouses) would be suitable. A couple of shirts, sweaters, and a jacket (depending on the season) can be worn in layers to accommodate China's range of climates. All hotels offer reliable laundry and dry cleaning services. Good comfortable walking shoes are a must. There will be a fair amount of walking involved during sightseeing. A shirt and tie for men and one or two dresses or pant suits for women will suffice for most formal occasions.

Do I need to bring my own hair dryer and adapter?

Throughout China, 220 volt is used. Most 4 & 5-star hotels are wired for use of 110-volt electrical appliances and usually have a hair-dryer in each room. However, if you need to bring your own hair dryer or other personal electrical appliances, it is best to bring your own electrical adaptors because they are not easily available in some hotels in China and S.E. Asia.

A variety of electrical outlets can be found in China,  please click here to see more information.

Is CNN available in the Orient?

Most hotels in major cities have access to CNN and some English TV Stations - Star Television and BBC.

International Calls and Phone Cards

International calls can be made directly from hotel rooms with IDD phones. Some large post offices also provide this service. Otherwise, look for roadside kiosks with the IDD sign. Four-star and five-star hotels charge a variable service charge between 10 to 20 percent.

The cheapest way to make a long-distance phone call is by using an IP (internet phone) card. With an IP card, you can make international calls for RMB 4.8 per minute, less than half the rate of an IDD call. These can be purchased at most hotels, Internet cafes and newsstands.

What are the Special Phone Numbers in China?

110 --- Police
119 --- Fire
120 --- Emergency
114 --- Directory inquiries and information

Useful Telephone Numbers
113 --- Long-distance operator
115 --- International operator
116 --- Long-distance directory inquiries
117 --- Time
121 --- Weather

 

Is Internet access available at the hotels?

 

Most Deluxe Hotels and some 4-star/first class Hotels in major cities are equipped with cable/telephone access to the Internet. However, it is not available on cruise ships. In large cities, you'll find an increasing number of Internet cafés, where you can make contact with home or friends by exchanging e-mails.

When are the official Chinese holidays?

January 1 - 3 New Years Day
late Jan and early Feb Chinese New Year
May 1 - 3 Labour Day
October 1 - 3 National Day

Shopping tips

Most visitors return home raving about the bargain shopping in China - jewellery, silk, carpets, Chinese calligraphy and paintings, jade, and other popular items can be purchased at much lower prices than in North America. Plan to travel light and carry an extra bag for all the great gifts and souvenirs you will undoubtedly want to buy.

Beijing

  • Red Bridge Shopping Plaza, Hongqiao Market & Pearl Market
  • Night Market - near the Holiday Inn Lido
  • Silk Alley - Jianguomennei Dejie Beijing
  • Oriental Plaza - Wangfu Jiang Street

Shanghai

  • Nanjing Road & Huai Hai Road

Canada's Embassy and Consulate Generals in China

There is a Canadian Embassy in Beijing and other Canada Consulate Generals in Shanghai, Chongqing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. For more information, please check www.canada.org.cn.

Safety

China is considered one of the safest countries in the world in which to travel. Crime is very low throughout China. The Chinese are friendly and hospitable and Chinese law is quite strict. Please be aware that all Chinese hotels provide an in-room safe or locked security boxes at the front desk. Leave valuables at the hotel. If there is a problem, report it immediately to a security guard or the police.

Capital Airport in Beijing

The Capital Airport, for both international and domestic flights, is located 27 kilometres (16.8 miles) north of the city center. The taxi fare is approximately RMB 150-200 yuan from town. Shuttle buses run every 30 minutes from 05:30 to 20:00 between the China Aviation Building and the airport. Shuttle buses run each hour from both the China Art Gallery and Zong Guan Cun to the airport. The bus fare is 16 yuan.

Taxis and Public Transportation

Taxies are the most convenient way to get around because they are plentiful and inexpensive. There are basically three different price categores: 1.20 yuan/km, 1.60 yuan/km and 2.00 yuan/km.

Although often crowded, the subway is usually the fastest way to get around the city center area. There is the circle line that runs underneath the Second Ring Road, and the straight line that extends from Sihuidong out to Pingguoyuan. Subway tickets are 3 yuan.

Public buses are the cheapest way to get around Beijing. The public bus system is very good, in that you can go almost anywhere by bus. However, the downside is that they are crowded and uncomfortable.

Postal Services

Postal services are usually provided at hotel desks. Large hotels have mail boxes and sell stamps for letters, post cards and parcels. Post offices, with eye-catching green emblems, are usually found on main streets, at railway stations, the airport and major scenic spots. They are open seven days a week from 9:00 to 17:00.

What is my Baggage Allowance?

The current Hospitality Service baggage allowance of 2 bags, maximum 50 lbs /23 kg, will apply for travel to/from Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, and South Korea.
Due to local regulations, baggage allowance to/from Japan and Brazil remains at 2 bags maximum 70 lbs/32 kg each.

All other countries maximum weight be 50 lb (23 kg) and maximum linear dimensions be 62 in (158 cm). 

You can also take one carry-on bag and one personal item on the transpacific flights. 

Each passenger is limited to one piece of check in luggage 20kg (44lbs) and one carry-on bag for the China/Asia domestic flights. The size of each carry-on bag shall not exceed 20 x 40 x 55cm and the total weight shall not exceed 5kgs. If the carry-on baggage exceeds the prescribed number, weight or size, it must be shipped as checked baggage.

What are your booking procedures

  1. A photocopy of your passport is required at the time of booking. Kindly specify Name of Tour and departure date and tour code if you know it. Land only passengers without international flights, please advise international details.
  2. A deposit is due within 7 days from the date of booking.  A deposit of $350 per person is required for China, Asia, & India Packages.  The deposit for Yangtze River packages is $550 per person. A second deposit of $1500 per person is two weeks later.
  3. ChinaPac will fax or mail you an invoice with details of flight schedules, status of this tour, type of Visa required, the deadline of final payment and documents required. A China or India Visa Application will be forwarded to you upon receiving your deposit.
  4. Passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date of entry of the first visiting city. If you would like for Chinapac International to process your China Visa, we would require that you send us your actual passport, (1) passport size picture and completed China Visa application with balance of payment in full no later than 45 days prior to date of departure.
  5. Approximately 14 days before your departure date you will receive your electronic documents which will include your e-tickets , China Visa (if processed by Chinapac), hotel & local guide contact list and any additional information that you may require for your tour.

  6. Cancellations / Refund / Term  - Click here or see page 28 of our China, Orient & India Brochures.

If you have any further questions, please contact us.

General Information & Conditions

For General Information & Conditions, Click here.

Visa Requirements for Asia, India, & Nepal

India
ˇ Apply in online at least 30 days before departure
ˇ Apply here http://in.vfsglobal.ca/visa.aspx

Vietnam
1) Apply upon arrival at the airport. Bring with you:
- Passport with one whole page for stamping
- 2 passport size photos
- Letter of invitation (apply 15 days prior to departure date)
- USD 25 cash

2) Apply in Vancouver
- At least 2 weeks before departure date
- Submit a scanned colour copy of passport
- Processing requires 5 business days
- CAD 130 for a single entry visa valid for 30 days (Canadian passport holders)

Cambodia
ˇ Apply upon arrival at the airport:
ˇ Passport valid at least 6 months with one page available for stamping
ˇ TWO recent passport size photos
ˇ USD 20 cash
ˇ Processing time approx 20-60 min.

Laos
ˇ Apply upon arrival at the airport:
ˇ Passport valid for at least 6 months with two pages for stamping
ˇ TWO recent passport size photos
ˇ USD 42 cash
ˇ Processing time approx 10-40 min.

Myanmar
ˇ Apply upon arrival at the airport, 28 days stay max
ˇ Passport valid for at least 6 months with two pages for stamping
ˇ TWO recent passport size photos taken within 6 months
ˇ Children (under 7 years old) with parents do not need to pay visa fees
ˇ Must hold return air ticket and mention detail address of licensed Hotels or guest Houses.
ˇ Client must show at least US 300/person if a single traveler. If client is traveling as a family, must show at least USD 600/family. Can show other currencies but must equal to these USD amounts
ˇ USD 30 cash
ˇ Processing time approx 10-30 min.

Bali
ˇ Apply upon arrival at the airport
ˇ  USD10 cash for 5 days visit
ˇ  USD25 cash for 30 days visit

6. Nepal 
ˇ Apply upon arrive at the airport
ˇ No charge for transit passengers within 72 hours stay
ˇ Need 2 passport size pictures
ˇ USD30 /person if stay for more than 72 hours

7. Thailand, Singapore, Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong
ˇ No visa is required

Visit Consular Affairs, Information and Assistance for Canadians Abroad for more travel related information.

 

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CHINAPAC INTERNATIONAL
107-511 West 7th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5Z 4R2
Tel: (604) 731-1693     Fax: (604) 731-1694
Toll Free: 1-800-661-8182     
Email: questions@chinapac.com      Website: www.chinapac.com