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Chinese R Visa

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by fhassan, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. fhassan

    fhassan New commenter

    I have searched online but cannot find any help in relation to the new R visa for China. The school I have applied to have told me that the Chinese government are now issuing R visa invitation letters instead of the Z visa. This has been confirmed by a friend that is also travelling to China to work in a different school. Has anyone applied for this and been successful?

    Also, I was told by the school that my highest degree (BSc) would be sufficient but now I am starting to worry as it looks like I need to have my PGCE notarised and legalised. Can anyone confirm this?

    Finally, can anyone provide a timescale for the visa to granted?

    Thanks in advance,
  2. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    I would be suspicious on a R visa, it is supposed to be for HIGH LEVEL FOREGIN TALENT. Unless you are going to contribute to the the economic grouth of the Chinese economy you would not be eligible in the normal world of China. 8

    At no time has a teacher been described as Foregin Talent anywhere in the world, unless they are listed in the Fortune 500!

    Looks like the school is taking a short cut with the R visa as the R visa is issued by a different office compared to the usual Bureau of Foreign Employment.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2018
  3. Teachallover

    Teachallover Occasional commenter

    I just read about this R visa as I haven’t heard of it. You are also not permitted to work although speaking at conferences etc to share knowledge is allowed. Sounds very suspicious that a school would be dishing out this...
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    This all sounds very dodgy to me. Your school must give you the proper working Z or else I would call it quits and look for another job. To me, this very much looks like some sort of scummy scam.

    When Mrs Hippopotamus and I were living in Qatar, I pottered along to the Chinese Embassy in Doha, in order to get our visas. An official at the Chinese Embassy stuck "business" visas into our passports. When I questioned this, I was told that we would be given some other visas when we arrived in China. Having spent a lot of time in the ME, where the visa procedure can be decidedly casual, I did not think at the time that this was so unusual, but when we arrived in Shenzhen, we were told that our business visas were NOT correct. We had to leave China and re-apply for Z visas. This meant that a huge financial loss for us, so I would therefore warn anyone thinking of going to China that they need to have the right visas stamped into their passports before arriving in the Middle Kingdom.
    Teachallover likes this.
  5. makhnovite

    makhnovite Established commenter

    Speak for yourself feb!!! ;)

    And Amen to that Hippo!:)
    ruthwill500 likes this.
  6. Fer888

    Fer888 Occasional commenter

    Our new teachers are getting z visas. I know last year we had a few coming over with the tourist visa but that was because there were such horrendous delays at the visa office and it was the quickest way to get it sorted at the time. However, as soon as they arrived it was quickly sorted with them getting the proper work permits and resident visas
  7. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Well, Fer888, perhaps things may vary from year to year and maybe from one city to another. However, Mrs Hippo and her overweight husband were told that it was impossible for us to get Z visas while we were in China, so we had to leave the country.
  8. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    It is still possible to go straight to a Work Visa and Residency from a Tourist Visa, not the norm but can be done. The Z Visa allows you to enter China and then complete your Work Visa usually in 20 days. So the Z visa can not be issued in China, only from outside the mainland.

    But the lack of applications for teaching vacancies may necessitate the issuing of a R Visa to attract teachers to areas of the country where there is a shortage of foreign teachers. There is a need for a few 100 teachers to fill all the vacancies in the new bilingual schools opening up next year.
  9. Teachallover

    Teachallover Occasional commenter

    Clearly someone thinks they’ve found a loophole in the system with this R visa. Maybe indeed it does work, temporarily. However, jokes aside, a teacher would not be classed as a high level talent and to avoid a repeat of Hippo’s situation, why take this risk on behalf of a school you don’t know? This forum is about offering advice and entering a country on the incorrect visa can never be very advisable!
  10. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    The financial cost to us was just a small part of the overall stress, hassle and bother.

    On a separate but related track, I would remind anyone who is thinking of teaching in China that you need AT LEAST five empty pages in your UK passport. More would be better, especially if you are planning a trip or two to some other countries as well. Getting a new passport in the UK is much easier than getting one once you have arrived in the Middle Kingdom.
  11. fhassan

    fhassan New commenter

    Hi all,

    Thank you for your replies. I have been told by the school that they will convert the R visa in to a working visa. At the final stage and cannot risk messing it up.
  12. fhassan

    fhassan New commenter

  13. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    Take the advice given that there is something "not normal" issuing a R visa to teachers.

    I would deduce that the school in question does not have the authority to issue its staff with the usual Work Visa and Residency.
  14. fhassan

    fhassan New commenter

    What would suggest that I do?
  15. february31st

    february31st Established commenter

    I would email the principal and ask them some straight questions.

    1. Why the R VISA and not a Z to enter the country.
    2. Does the school have authority to employ foreign staff. If the school did it would be possible to issue a Z visa.
    ejclibrarian and Teachallover like this.
  16. Fer888

    Fer888 Occasional commenter

    Yes was not something we generally do - was only because of all the new regulations introduced last year and the severe delays due to the visa/FEC office coming together. Process is back to normal this year with everyone getting their z visas before coming here.

    I have had to get a new passport whilst here. I applied in October with 9 months still to go. The process was painless and I received it quickly from the UK visa office here in Shanghai. I then had to go to a particular police station to get my new passport registered to my current address- couldn't go to a normal one as there was no entry stamp in the new passport. Once I had the temporary registration form I had to send it and the new passport off to HR to get the resident visa put in. The experience wasn't too bad - just took a little while to get it all started (they added the extra nine months to my new passport as well). I then had to contact the bank and get that sorted. When I transfer money back to the UK and am using an old contract and tax certificates I have to show them both passports as well. The only other pain is that my driving licence has my old passport number on. I did ask the police whether I needed to update it but they said no. When we move in August though I may go to the driving licence centre and get it all confirmed again.
  17. pepperinternational

    pepperinternational New commenter

    Hi, I am a Chinese who used to work for local government and currently own a language center in China. My British friend recommended TES to me while I was looking for teachers. I hope I can give some useful tips for teachers who are relocating or consider to relocate to China.

    The R visa is for High Level Foreign Talent only, which is also called A category talent visa. According to the regulations set by Chinese Foreign Experts Bureau, only those who have made tremendous contribution to the society in their professional field could obtain R visa, for example, Nobel Prize Laureate, senior managers of Fortune 500 companies, scientists, reputable artists, etc. Foreign teachers are classified into B category talent, which means, they are unlikely to get a R visa to work legally in China. In my city, the first expat who obtained a R visa was a former senior manager of a Fortune 500 company. For foreign teachers who would like to teach legally in China, you have to obtain a Z visa before entering the country, and the application process can take 2 to 3 months depending on your preparation of documentation. To be specific: 1. Your school has to gather all scanned copies of your documents (including those notarized and legalized at the Embassy/Consulate General) and upload them to Foreign Experts Bureau's website (the school has to upload its own legal documents as well); 2. It takes about 5 working days for the Foreign Experts Bureau to process your documents, and if you are qualified, the Foreign Experts Bureau will issue a Work Permit Notice to you; 3. Bring the Work Permit Notice and necessary documents to the Embassy/Consulate General to apply for Work Visa; 4. When the Embassy/Consulate General issues you a Work Visa, you are ready to come to China; 5. Bring all original documents that you uploaded online (which you used in step 1) to local Foreign Experts Bureau for on-site check, and then you'll get a hard copy of Work Permit: 5. Bring your Work Permit, Passport (which has work visa) to local police bureau to obtain a Residence Permit. Then, you are ready to work legally in China.

    For step 1, you have to prepare: passport, photos, highest degree notarized and legalized, non criminal record notarized and legalized, medical check, contract (stamped by school and signed by you), resume, reference letter (or teaching certificate such as TEFL/TESOL/CELTA). It is the notary and legalization process that takes most time, so you'd better start early. If you'd like to have more detailed info regarding the work permit and work visa application process, feel free to send me an email and I'll send you a pack for reference.

    Wish you good luck.

  18. Capricorn2412

    Capricorn2412 New commenter

    After the 5 working days, is there a wait for anything else? Or do they issue the work permit notice then? After receiving the work notice, do people still fail to get the Z visa when they apply at the Chinese Embassy or is the work permit enough?
  19. zrcadlo

    zrcadlo New commenter

    Hi, yes we failed to get ours because someone in an office somewhere in China had neglected to write my husband's name on a particular line on one of the forms. So we had to ask the school to DHL us another form (with the correct detail written in the correct place), wait a week in the UK to receive it, then go back to the visa office again and reapply. And that time, it worked. So, basically, anything can happen even if you have all the documents lined up well in advance!
  20. Capricorn2412

    Capricorn2412 New commenter

    Oh wow, better double check them. How long did your work permit take to process once the school submitted it?

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