As I’m going to Beijing this March, so I need to immediately apply for the Chinese visa. As for Indonesian, we need to apply for the visa if you want to visit the mainland China. First thing first, I started to Google to find out about all the requirements. I stumbled upon their official visa application center website. I spent hour carefully read about the visa requirement.
So basically, Chinese visa doesn’t require as many documents as the other visa requirement. You just need this:
- Original passport
At least 6 months of remaining validity
- Photocopy of the passport’s data page
- Visa application form & photo
You can fill the form online on their website and print out or you can download the form and fill it manually. As for the photo, the photo need to be bare head, full face, against a light background (I chose white) and the size is 48mm x 33 mm. If you are confuse, then just go to the credible photo studio and tell them you want to make a Chinese visa photo.
- Proof of legal status (applicable for those not applying for the visa in their country of citizenship)
Since I apply for the visa in Jakarta and I’m Indonesian, so I don’t need to enclose this.
- Photocopy of previous Chinese passport or previous Chinese visa
I’ve been granted Chinese visa in 2005 when I planned to go to Guangzhou, but since the visa is attached in my Mom’s passport (I shared the same passport with my Mom back then), so I really don’t think it is important to enclose my previous Chinese passport.
- Photocopy of identification card (KTP)
Copy your identification card on a A4 paper. Don’t cut it into the shape, because my friend did cut to fit the shape, but the visa officer reject it.
- Photocopy of kartu keluarga
- Photocopy of birth certificate
- Supporting documents
– Air ticket booking record (round trip)
– Proof of hotel reservation (I made a dummy booking on Booking.com. Chose the hotel with no credit card needed booking & cancellation option)
– Invitation letter for tourist (if you have someone who invite you to China)
You are advise to apply for the Chinese visa one month before the travel date. But not earlier than three months, because if you apply for the single entry visa, the visa will be expired on your travel date.
Bring all the documents to Chinese visa application center. As for Jakarta, it is located in The East Building 8th floor, Jl. DR. Ide Anak Agung Gde Agung Blok. E.3.2 Kav. 1 South Jakarta. The visa application center is located in the same building as NET TV, so if you are lost then just ask for the NET TV building.
Please be assured about the office hours. The office hours is Monday – Friday from 9 am to 3 pm for submission and 9 am – 4 pm for the payment and passport collection. I went to the application center twice since I didn’t knew that they are having a Chinese new year’s break. So, I went to the visa center again the next week. Thank God it was open.
Before I enter the processing room, I need to pass the security gate. It wasn’t a really strict security system, just like I did in Japan embassy. We could also bring our phone & belonging to the belonging to the visa processing room. After that, the security gave me a queue ticket. My number was called directly, so I rushed to the processing counter. I was surprised because I don’t have to queue for a long time.
I hand over all the documents to the visa officer. She checked our documents and make it sure it was all completed. The officer will told us if our document wasn’t complete. Thanks God, my documents was all complete. But my father’s wasn’t complete, because apparently if you are a journalist you need an official letter from the office and a personal statement that you travel to China not for any duty purpose and purely as a tourist. So, he need to get back to the application center 10 days before the departure date. Also, the officer told that my father will get one month visa, while the others get 3 months visa.
We just only need about 30 minutes to complete our visa request on the Chinese visa application center. I must say that the process was convenient. The officer will give us a piece of paper that we need to bring on the collection day. The visa application process will take about 4 days working hour.
On the collection day, I came again to the visa application center. The gate officer will give us another queue ticket for collection. The counter for submit and collection are different. I came at 3 pm and the waiting room was pretty crowded. It took me about 30 mins to get called by the officer. After I get called, I hand out the coupon and she gave me a payment invoice. The visa fee for single entry visa is Rp 540.000 (tax&service included). You could pay it by debit card.
After paying the visa, I get another invoice to collect my passport in the different counter. And so it goes, my Chinese visa is approved! Now, let’s go to Beijing!