Obtaining a Chinese (Z) visa
Getting a work (Z) visa is the first step to becoming legally employed as a teacher in China. Follow these simple steps to ensure your visa is processed without unnecessary delays.
The Z Visa
In order to obtain the visa, your employer must get your work permit and invitation letter from the local government.
Documents required in order to process the work permit invitation:
  • Your university degree (not a transcript)
  • Your TEFL / TESOL / CELTA certification or equivalent
  • A health check-up obtained in your home country
  • A scanned copy of your passport (should have at least 6-months of validity remaining)
  • A clean criminal background check, or "CBC". Ask the school if you need to get a local police check or a federal check (the requirements vary by location)
  • Your contract signature page
  • A scanned copy of your TEFL / TESOL / CELTA certificate or other equivalent
*Different schools and cities may require slightly different documents; for details, please refer to the school for more information.
After you’ve sent these documents to school (electronic copies via email are OK) they will take them to the local government office for processing and send you the work permit invitation papers.
Obtaining the Z Visa
Step 1
While your school processes the work permit invitations, you can download and complete a visa application form (Z visa)
Step 2
Download a medical check form. Take this to a doctor in your home country and do the physical check. The doctor should complete, sign and stamp the form. You will also need to attach a passport sized photo (2”x 2”) on the top right part of the form.
Step 3
Scan these forms and send digital copies directly to your school.

They will also need:
  • Your passport information page
  • A scan copy of your degree
  • A scan copy of your TESOL / TEFL certificate
With these documents the school can obtain the work permit invitation papers for you. It will take them about 2-4 weeks to receive your paperwork.
Step 4
They'll send you the work permit invitation papers via international courier (DHL, FedEx, etc.)
Step 5
Go to the nearest Chinese Embassy or Consulate Office.

You'll need to bring:
  • The work permit and invitation letter
  • The completed Z-class visa application form
  • Your signed and stamped medical check form
  • Your passport
  • A 2"x2" photo (full face, front view, no hat or cap, against a plain and light colored background)
  • The visa fee is about $150 - $200 depending on your nationality. Prices may be higher for express service. Keep the receipts because most schools will reimburse the cost of the visa.
You'll have your Z-class ENTRY visa in about 3-4 working days.
What comes next?
While you're waiting for your visa paperwork to finish, you can begin looking at airfare prices and prepare to book a ticket. Flight prices vary daily, so search a range of +/- two or three days of your target arrival date. Once you've found a flight that suits your budget, email the school to get approval on the date and arrival time. Websites like Kayak and Orbitz are useful for comparing fare prices. You can even schedule pricing alerts so they email you when the price drops!
You've done your homework about the visa - now you can start your job search with confidence. Apply today to learn more about top teaching jobs in China!
Apply Today!