Shanghai, China

Have you been accepted to NYU Shanghai? Congratulations! Read on to find out how to get your visa for Shanghai. For information on study away details and living recommendations, contact the Office of Global Programs or go to the NYU Shanghai page.

PLEASE NOTE: The following resources are intended for students attending a semester or full academic year at NYU Shanghai through the Office of Global Programs or their school or division.

If you are an NYU Shanghai degree student, you will work directly with NYU Shanghai to obtain your residence permit. 

If you have questions about your visa application or require assistance completing any application forms, please contact OGS or visit us during Advising Hours at the StudentLink Center.

Find out if you need a visa

ALL STUDENTS attending NYU Shanghai must have a Student Visa in order to study in China (unless you are a Chinese citizen traveling on a valid Chinese passport OR hold a valid Mainland Travel Permit for citizens of Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan).

Students studying at NYU Shanghai for periods longer than 180 days will apply for the X1 visa. Students studying at NYU Shanghai for less than 180 days will apply for the X2 visa. You must receive an Acceptance letter and a JW202/DQ form produced by NYU Shanghai prior to beginning the visa application process.

Please note: It is not possible to convert non-students visas (i.e. tourist or family visit visas) to student visas from within China.

How long it takes to get a visa

The earliest time to apply for your Chinese visa is 3 months (90 days) before the NYU Shanghai semester or academic year away start date. The Chinese Consulate in New York generally takes 3-5 business days to process visas. If you are applying at another consulate, check their website for processing times. 

Prepare before you apply

Step 1

Make sure you have a valid passport.

If you do not have a passport or need to renew yours, use an expedited method to obtain it immediately. OGS will not be able to request the necessary immigration documents for you until you have a valid passport.

Step 2

Complete the NYU Shanghai Immigration Form via your Study Away Portal*.

This form will be provided to you upon acceptance to the semester or academic year away. Complete the form with your personal information exactly as it appears on your passport.

*If you are not going to NYU Shanghai as a regular study away undergrad (i.e. MSW Silver students), you may be contacted directly by the OGS with a separate form and instructions on how to complete your visa process. We will need the same materials, but you won't be using the "Study Away Portal".

Step 3

Submit a copy of the photo & signature pages of your passport to OGS via your Study Away Portal*.

  • Must be a clear scan of the bio page (including the barcode at the bottom) and signature page (passport must be signed) of your passport.
  • Must be a scan, not a photo.
  • Must be valid more than 6 months beyond the end date of your semester or academic year away
*If you are not going to NYU Shanghai as a regular study away undergrad (i.e. MSW Silver students), you may be contacted directly by the OGS with a separate form and instructions on how to complete your visa process. We will need the same materials, but you won't be using the "Enrollment Portal".

Apply for a visa

Step 1

Find out which consulate you will visit to apply for your visa.

Step 2

Complete your visa application.

  • If you are applying at the Chinese Consulate in New York, you will first need to submit a Chinese Online Visa Application (COVA). If you are applying at another consulate, fill out the application provided on that consulate's website.
    • Reminder - semester students will only receive a single entry visa. You can apply for one more additional entry once you get to China.
  • Gather the required materials listed in your NYU Shanghai Visa Document Checklist [PDF: 477 KB]. 
  • There is a visa fee, which varies depending upon your citizenship. Check your consulate’s website for the rate based on your nationality.
    • You will need to pay the fee with a credit card or a money order only.
    • The consulate also offers the option of expediting your visa for an additional fee, which will result in your visa being processed in 2-3 days.
  • Please note that different consulates have different requirements. You should visit the website of your local consulate or embassy to make sure you have everything you need.

Step 3

Make an appointment at your local consulate to submit your visa application, if required.

  • After submitting your online visa application, you will need to visit your local consulate to submit the hard copy visa materials. If you are applying at the Chinese Consulate in New York, no appointment is required at this time to submit your documents. Applications can be submitted on a walk-in basis during the consulate's opening hours
  • If you are applying at another consulate, please visit their website for specific submission instructions. You may be required to schedule an appointment on that consulate's Appointment for Visa Application Submission (AVAS) online form. Please be sure to bring in all the required documentation to your appointment, including your signed COVA forms and the Appointment Confirmation sheet.

Step 4

Receive your visa

  • Once you receive your visa, please upload a copy of it to OGS via your Enrollment Portal.