The vague guidelines that require a letter of invitation from within China may drive tourists to tour operators for an easier application process and to avoid making reservations before visa approval.
If you’re planning a trip to China and don’t have an up-to-date visa in hand, you may encounter some additional red tape.
On Aug. 1, the Chinese government started requiring that travelers seeking tourist visas, officially known as L visas, submit a letter of invitation and photocopies of the traveler’s round-trip ticket and hotel reservations.
To obtain a business, or F Visa, applicants must now have an invitation letter or “confirmation letter of invitation” issued by an authorized Chinese agency. This is in addition to an invitation letter issued by a Chinese local government, company, corporation or institution.