Passport & Visas

You need to meet specific requirements to qualify for a visa to go to China. We’ve listed a few here that might alert you to any potential problems. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Passport Requirements

  1. Do I have to have a passport to apply for a visa?
    • You must have a signed, current passport that will be valid for at least 6 months after your estimated return from China to apply for your Chinese visa.
  2. Can I apply for a passport on my own?
    • Yes, participants should apply for their own passport; however, China Horizons is available to answer any questions.
  3. Where do I apply for a passport?
    • If you can wait 6-8 weeks for your passport, then we recommend applying through your local government office. Click here to learn how. If you need your passport within 30 days, please select expedited processing on your passport application. This service costs an additional $60 and shortens the processing time to two weeks.
  4. Can I submit my application while I am waiting for my passport to arrive?
    • A copy of your passport should be provided at the time of application, but you are still welcome to submit your application before your passport arrives. Please notify China Horizons if you are in the process of applying for your passport.


The most difficult aspect of getting to China is securing a valid visa. China Horizons will coordinate and apply for all participants’ visas.

  1. How much will my visa cost?
    • For paid teachers, the visa fee will cost approximately $179 plus shipping of approximately $30. For volunteer teachers, the visa cost is included in the program fee so all that is required is to pay for shipping your passport to China Horizons.
  2. How long does it take to apply for a visa?
    • After sending your passport to China Horizons, you should receive your passport with the attached visa within 30 days.
  3. How do I know what visa to apply for?
    • China Horizons will assist you in the visa application process to ensure that you travel to and teach in China under the proper visa.
  4. When should I send my passport to China Horizons to apply for my visa?
    • China Horizons will notify you when the time comes to send off your passport. We usually begin visa applications 4-8 weeks prior to departure.
  5. Can I apply for my visa on my own?
    • Participants should NOT apply for a visa on their own unless instructed to do so by China Horizons.