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U.S. Embassy Beijing
No. 55 An Jia Lou Road
Chaoyang District, Beijing 100600
Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Fax: +86 10-8531-3300
This consular district includes Beijing, Tianjin, Gansu, Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Ningxia, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shandong, Shanxi, Xinjiang, Chongqing, Guizhou, Sichuan, Yunnan, and Tibet.
U.S. Consulate General Hong Kong & Macau
26 Garden Road
Central, Hong Kong
Telephone: +852 2841-2211, +852 2841-2225, +852 2841-2323
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +852 2523-9011
Fax: +852 2845-4845
This consular district includes the Hong Kong and Macau Special Administrative Regions (SARs).
U.S. Consulate General Guangzhou
No. 43 Hua Jiu Road
Zhujiang New Town
Tianhe District, Guangzhou 510623
Telephone: +86 20-3814-5775
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Fax: +86 20-3814-5572
This consular district includes Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, and Hainan.
U.S. Consulate General Shanghai
No. 1469 Huai Hai Zhong Road
Xuhui District, Shanghai 200041
Telephone: +86 21-8011-2400
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Fax: +86 21-6148-8266
This consular district includes Shanghai, Anhui, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang.
U.S. Consulate General Shenyang
No. 52 14th Wei Road
Heping District, Shenyang 110003
Telephone: +86 24-2322-1198
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Fax: +86 24-8610-6904
This consular district includes Heilongjiang, Jilin, and Liaoning.
U.S. Consulate General Wuhan
No. 568 Jian She Avenue
New World International Trade Tower I
Jianghan District, Wuhan 430022
Telephone: +86-27 8555-7791
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +86 10-8531-4000
Fax: +86 27-8555-7761
This consular district includes Henan, Hubei, Hunan, and Jiangxi. Please note that U.S. Consulate General Wuhan provides emergency U.S. citizen services, as well as some routine services on a limited basis, until a move to a new office where full services will be provided.
See the U.S. Department of State’s Fact Sheet on the People's Republic of China for information on U.S.-China relations.
Entry & Exit:
Lack of a visa, having an expired visa, or overstaying your visa will result in detention and/or fines.
The Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR): The TAR requires special permits for tourist travel, most often obtained through a travel agent in the PRC. If you do enter a restricted area without the requisite permit, you could be fined, taken into custody, and deported for illegal entry. To learn more about specific entry requirements for the TAR or other restricted areas, check with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the United States of America.
The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of the PRC.
Transiting the PRC:
During Your Stay:
Dual Nationality: The PRC government does not recognize dual nationality. If you are a dual national of the United States and the PRC, or otherwise have ethnic or historical ties to the PRC, it is possible that PRC authorities will assert that you are a PRC citizen, limit your ability to access certain consular services, and, if you are detained, deny your access to U.S. consular officials.
Because the PRC government does not recognize dual citizenship, dual U.S.-PRC citizens may face a number of hurdles when seeking public benefits in the PRC. U.S. citizens who are also citizens of the PRC may experience difficulty in accessing benefits in the PRC, such as enrollment in public schools, treatment at public hospitals and clinics, or obtaining PRC identity and citizenship documents, such as passports. U.S.-PRC dual citizens must navigate conflicting aspects of PRC nationality, which the PRC government may inconsistently apply.
If you are a naturalized U.S. citizen or have a possible claim to PRC citizenship, and you are traveling to the PRC, inform yourself about PRC nationality law and practices relating to determination and loss of PRC citizenship. PRC authorities generally consider a child born in the PRC to at least one PRC-national parent to be a PRC citizen, even if the child was issued a U.S. passport at the time of birth. If you have or had a claim to PRC citizenship and your child is born in the PRC, prior to departing the PRC with your child, you may wish to contact the local Public Security Bureau and/or Entry-Exit Bureau for information on obtaining a travel document. If you have or had a claim to PRC citizenship and your child is born in the United States, please contact the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the United States of America for specific information on the documentation requirements to bring your child to the PRC.
For most visitors, the PRC remains a very safe country. Traffic accidents are the most common safety concern for U.S. citizens. Training, capability, and responsiveness of PRC authorities vary by region and even by city. The U.S. Embassy and Consulates General have no law enforcement authority and may not represent U.S. citizens in either criminal or civil legal matters.
To ensure your safety and security in the PRC, you should:
Violent crime is not common in the PRC, however:
Be alert to criminal schemes, such as:
Be alert to criminal schemes, such as internet, phone scams, dating scams, as well as financial scams. If you already have been victim of a scam, catalogue as many details as possible, including names, telephone and bank numbers, and email and IP addresses; file a police report, and inform the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General. See the U.S. Department of State's and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)'s pages for information on scams.
Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police and contact the U.S. Embassy or nearest Consulate General. U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault can contact the local police and should contact the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General.
Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime. See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
Lost or Stolen Passports: If your passport is stolen, you must apply for both a new passport at the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General and a new PRC visa. File a police report at the nearest police station right away. You may also be directed to file a report at the local Exit-Entry Bureau.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General for assistance. Domestic violence in the PRC is rarely recognized as a crime.
Tourism: The tourism industry is unevenly regulated, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities do not commonly occur. Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the PRC government or by recognized authorities in the field. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is typically available only in/near major cities. First responders are generally unable to access areas outside of major cities to provide urgent medical treatment. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.
Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General immediately.
The PRC legal system can be opaque and the interpretation and enforcement of local laws arbitrary. The judiciary does not enjoy independence from political influence. U.S. citizens traveling or residing in the PRC should be aware of varying levels of scrutiny to which they will be subject from local law enforcement and state security.
Certain provisions of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China, such as “social order” crimes (Article 293) and crimes involving “endangering state security” and “state secrets” (Article 102 to 113), are ill-defined and can be interpreted by the authorities arbitrarily and situationally. Information that may be common knowledge in other countries could be considered a “state secret” in the PRC, and information can be designated a “state secret” retroactively.
Drug and Alcohol Enforcement:
PRC law-enforcement authorities have little tolerance for illegal drugs, including marijuana. Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking illegal drugs in the PRC are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences, heavy fines, or the death penalty. Police regularly conduct unannounced drug tests on people suspected of drug use and have been known to enter a bar or nightclub and subject all patrons to immediate drug testing. Police may force you to provide a urine, blood, or hair follicle sample on short notice. A positive finding, even if the drug was legal elsewhere or consumed prior to arriving in the PRC, can lead to immediate detention, fines, deportation, and/or a ban from re-entering the PRC.
The PRC also has strict laws against driving under the influence of alcohol that can lead to immediate detention on a criminal charge.
Assisted Reproductive Technology: In vitro fertilization (IVF) is widely and legally practiced. PRC law, however, strictly forbids surrogacy, and surrogacy contracts will not be considered valid. The use of reproductive technology for medical research and profit is strictly controlled.
Contracts and Commercial Disputes: Before entering into a commercial or employment contract in the PRC, have it reviewed by legal counsel both in the United States and in the PRC. The U.S. International Trade Administration can assist you in identifying and vetting business contacts and opportunities but may not intervene in contract disputes. Many U.S. citizens have reported difficulty getting their contracts enforced by PRC courts or being forced out of profitable joint-ventures without opportunity to secure legal recourse in the PRC.
Counterfeit Goods: Do not buy counterfeit or pirated goods. Bootlegs are illegal in the United States, and you may also be breaking local law by purchasing them.
Cruise Ship Passengers: Click here for safety information and travel advice.
Digital Payments: The PRC has transitioned to almost a predominantly cashless society. Some mobile phone applications offer a digital payment solution for individuals visiting the PRC on a temporary or long-term basis. Often, payment is made through an individual using their mobile phone to scan a vendor or business’s QR code. The number of locations accepting foreign credit cards has decreased in recent years. Visitors to the PRC should research whether the locations they are visiting will accept foreign credit cards and familiarize themselves with mobile digital payment options prior to traveling to the PRC.
Earthquakes: Earthquakes occur throughout the PRC. Check here for information about earthquake preparedness.
English/Secondary School Teachers: English teachers in the PRC frequently report employment disputes which can result in questioning by local authorities, termination, lost wages, confiscation of passports, forced eviction from housing, and even threats of violence.
Exit Bans: Business disputes, court orders to pay a settlement, or government investigations into both criminal and civil issues may result in an exit ban which will prohibit your departure from the PRC until the issue is resolved. Even individuals and their family members who are not directly involved, or even aware of these proceedings, can be subject to an exit ban. Additionally, some local businesspeople who feel that they have been wronged by a foreign business partner may hire "debt collectors” to harass, intimidate, and sometimes physically detain foreign business partners or family members in hopes of collecting the debt. The U.S. Embassy or nearest U.S. Consulate General can provide a list of local attorneys who serve U.S. clients but are otherwise unable to intervene in civil cases. Local law enforcement authorities are generally unwilling to become involved in what they consider private business matters and may not provide the individual who has been barred from leaving the PRC with any written notice of the exit ban.
Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:
LGBTQI+ Travelers: Same sex marriages are not legally recognized in the PRC and local authorities will not provide marriage certificates to same-sex couples. There are no civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination or harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity, though homosexuality has been decriminalized. Prejudices and discrimination still exist in many parts of the country. There are growing LGBTQI+ communities in some of the largest cities in the PRC and violence against LGBTQI+ individuals in the PRC is relatively rare. See Section 6 of our Human Rights Practices in the Human Rights Report for the People's Republic of China and read our LGBTQI+ Travel Information page.
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs): In January 2017, the PRC implemented a law regulating the operations of foreign NGOs in the PRC. NGOs and their employees should ensure they are complying with all relevant statutory requirements, particularly if working in sensitive areas or fields. Additionally, the PRC government announced sanctions on five U.S.-based NGOs in December 2019.
North Korea: Do not travel to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) due to the serious risk of arrest and long-term detention of U.S. nationals. For further information, consult the North Korea International Travel Information page and the North Korea Travel Advisory.
Political and Religious Activity: Participating in unauthorized political or religious activities, including participating in public protests or sending private electronic messages critical of the government may result in detention and PRC government-imposed restrictions on future travel to the PRC. Although the PRC constitution permits freedom of religious belief, it does not permit freedom of religious practice and government officials are increasing pressure on domestic religious activities. The U.S. Mission to the PRC has observed an increase in the number of U.S. citizens being interrogated, detained, and/or forced to leave the country in connection with real or perceived religious proselytization. U.S. citizens have been detained and/or expelled for distributing religious literature, including Bibles, or engaging in unauthorized religious meetings. If you bring religious literature with you, local law dictates that it be a “reasonable amount” for your personal use. If you attempt to bring larger quantities, the literature will likely be confiscated and you may be fined, detained, or deported.
Social Insurance: The PRC has a social insurance system to which foreigners who work in the PRC must contribute. When you sign an employment contract, you must apply for a social insurance number, and it is important that your employer work with you to comply with the regulations. Please check the official website for updated information.
Social Media: Social media accounts are widely monitored in the PRC. Local authorities may use information they deem critical, controversial, or that might involve illegal activity against both the poster of the material and the host of the social media forum under local law. Individuals have also been held responsible for the content that others place within social media spaces they control, such as the comments section under a post or within a group chat that an individual controls.
Special Scrutiny of Foreign Citizens: On occasion, U.S. citizens visiting or resident in the PRC have been interrogated or detained for reasons said to be related to “state security.” In such circumstances, you could face arrest, detention, or an exit ban prohibiting your departure from the PRC for a prolonged period. Dual U.S.-PRC nationals and U.S. citizens of Chinese heritage may be at a higher risk of facing such special scrutiny. Information about dual nationality can be found on our website.
Students: See our U.S. Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.
Surveillance and Monitoring: Security personnel carefully watch foreign visitors and may place you under surveillance. Hotel rooms (including meeting rooms), offices, cars, taxis, telephones, internet usage, digital payments, and fax machines may be monitored onsite or remotely, and personal possessions in hotel rooms, including computers, may be searched without your consent or knowledge. Security personnel have been known to detain and deport U.S. citizens sending private electronic messages critical of the PRC government.
Transferring Money to/from the PRC: The regulatory environment in the PRC includes tightening capital outflow controls that can severely impact one’s ability to move money out of the country. Wire transfers may only be available to those who have an active bank account in the PRC. Ask your local bank location in the PRC for more information. The U.S. Department of State may be able to help transfer funds to a destitute U.S citizen overseas through our office in Washington, D.C., to a U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate General abroad. More information on this option is available here.
Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: U.S. citizens with mobility disabilities may face challenges while traveling in the PRC. Sidewalks often do not have curb cuts and many streets can be crossed only via pedestrian bridges or underpasses accessible by staircase. Assistive technologies for blind people and those with other vision disabilities are unreliable, and access to elevators in public buildings can be restricted. In major cities, public restrooms in places visited by tourists usually have a least one accessible toilet. See Persons with Disabilities in the Human Rights Report for the People's Republic of China (2022).
Typhoons: The southeast coast of the PRC is subject to strong typhoons and tropical storms, usually from July through September. For current information, please consult the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Honolulu and the National Weather Service's Central Pacific Hurricane Center.
Women Travelers: If you are a woman traveling abroad, please review our travel tips for Women Travelers.
Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region: Extraordinary security measures are in place through the region. Authorities may impose curfews and restrictions on short notice. They may also engage in invasive surveillance techniques against individuals. Expect significant travel delays, avoid gatherings and demonstrations, always carry ID, and follow the instructions of local authorities. Travelers with ethnic ties to the region may experience special restrictions, discrimination, and even arbitrary detention.
COVID-19 Entry Requirements: There are COVID-related entry requirements in place for U.S. citizens.
COVID-19 Testing: U.S. citizens can obtain a COVID-19 test at most hospitals and clinics in the PRC. They can choose between PCR and antigen tests, which are both available. The cost of the test is about $17 U.S. dollars, but it may vary depending on the location. The test fee is not covered by the host government and must be paid by the U.S. citizen. Test results are usually returned within 12 to 24 hours by email, text, or an update to the local COVID-19 monitoring app. For more information, please see this notice.
COVID-19 Vaccines: Certain COVID-19 vaccines are available for U.S. citizens to receive in the PRC.
Quality of Care: The standards of medical care in the PRC are not equivalent to those in the United States. Even in private hospitals or public hospitals with well-equipped wards, English-speaking patients frequently encounter difficulty due to cultural, language, and regulatory differences. Rural areas have rudimentary facilities and inadequate staffing. Additionally, Rh-negative blood may be difficult to obtain; the blood type of the general Asian populace is Rh positive.
Payment and Insurance: Ambulances in the PRC are often slow to arrive, and most do not have sophisticated medical equipment or trained responders. Cash payment for services is often required prior to treatment, including emergency cases. Travelers will be asked to post a deposit prior to admission to cover the expected cost of treatment. Hospitals in major cities may accept credit cards. The U.S. Embassy and Consulates General in the PRC maintain lists of local English-speaking doctors and hospitals.
Use of Medicare/Medicaid in the PRC: Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Hospitals and doctors in the PRC often do not accept U.S. health insurance.
Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage. Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.
We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.
Medication: If traveling with prescription medication, check with the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the United States of America to ensure the medication is legal in the PRC. Carry prescription medication in original packaging, along with the prescription. Many commonly used U.S. drugs and medications are not available in the PRC, and counterfeit, low-quality knockoffs are prevalent. If you try to have medications sent to you from outside the PRC, you may have problems getting them released by PRC Customs authorities and/or you may have to pay high customs duties.
Air Quality: Air pollution is a significant problem in many locations. Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates. The PRC’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment also provides its own air quality data for cities throughout the PRC.
Most roads and towns in Tibet, Qinghai, parts of Xinjiang, and western Sichuan are situated at altitudes over 10,000 feet. Take appropriate precautions to prepare for and be alert to altitude sickness.
Disease: The following diseases are prevalent:
For further health information:
Road Conditions and Safety: Traffic safety is generally poor, and driving can be dangerous, though rules, regulations, and conditions vary greatly throughout the PRC.
Traffic can be chaotic and largely unregulated and the rate of accidents, including fatal accidents, is among the highest in the world. Motorcycle and bicycle accidents are frequent and often deadly. Pedestrians do not have the right of way, and you should show extreme caution when walking in traffic, even in marked crosswalks. Child safety seats are not widely available.
Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information. Also, please review the Law of the People's Republic of China on Road Traffic Safety.
Public Transportation: Public transportation, including subways, trains, and buses, generally has a positive safety record and is widely available in major cities, although individuals on crowded buses and subways can be targeted by pickpockets.
Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the PRC government’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of the PRC’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s Safety Assessment Page.
Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to the PRC should check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts at the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Maritime Security Communications with Industry (MSCI) web portal. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard Homeport website, and the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) Navigational Warnings website.
The Commandant of the Coast Guard is unable to determine if effective anti-terrorism measures are in place in PRC ports as required by 46 U.S. Code § 70108.