US Secretary of State John Kerry shakes hands with the first Chinese citizen to be granted a 10-year visa at the US Embassy in Beijing
A total of 7,000 to 8,000 10-year visas have already been issued to Chinese citizens at the US Consulate General in Shanghai since the extended visa policy went into effect last Wednesday, Shanghai Daily reports.
The new visa agreement was announced during the APEC summit in Beijing and aims to boost exchange between China and the US, which currently attracts only two percent of Chinese tourism.
The majority of tourists and business travelers in China will be granted 10-year visas, according to John M. Grondelski, the visa unit chief at the consulate.
The extended visa allows the owner to travel between the two countries multiple times on a single visa throughout the 10-year period, although the length of each stay will be determined by the visa category.
The arrangement will make traveling between the US and China more convenient and way less expensive, considering the application fee remains the same at 160 USD. More importantly, it’ll result in virtually zero face time with miserable, cantankerous consulate workers sitting in their plastic screen-guarded thrones of self-importance (I’m looking at you, Theresa at the China Consulate Chicago).