Asked by L. Ritter from United States | Dec. 02, 2019 11:30
About:First Time China

Flying US to Singapore, then taking 30 day cruise on Holland America, ending in Shanghai. Need visa?

We will stop at multiple ports, including Hong Kong and Taiwan (but no Chinese ports other than Shanghai), then Japan which is last port before getting to Wusongkou Port Terminal. Spending 2 nights at Sofitel Shanghai Hotel then flying out of Pudong Airport to USA. We are US citizens. Can we use 144 hr visa-free transit? If so, are there now "self-help machines" at the cruise terminal to print our Arrival cards? Also, we've been told to "inform the carrier when boarding" that we're flying home out of Shanghai and requesting the 144 hour visa-free transit. Do they mean when we board the plane in the USA or when we board the ship in Singapore? Thanks!

Answers (1)
Answered by ZUPAN | Dec. 02, 2019 11:48
Your itinerary is eligible for 144 hour visa free transit under the condition that your flight from Shanghai to, I assume US, doesn't have any additional landing of any kind within mainland China and Japan.

- I'm not aware of the "self-help machines" at cruise terminal, but you should not worry about them because arrival/departure cards are relatively simple and they are usually dispensed on board the ship, so you will have your arrival cards filled out even before the ship docks in Shanghai. Here one additional information. Beside yellow arrival cards that you will, almost for certain, fill out on board the ship, you will also fill out the blue forms that are intended for those using 144 hour visa free transit. It is also possible, but less probable, that even this form will be dispensed on board the ship, but even if this is not the case, the best option is to fill them in the cruise terminal manually.

- You will inform your carrier in Singapore. There is no need to say anything in US because you will fly from US to Singapore and you don't need a visa for this portion of your journey, so US immigration will be uninterested about this. So, you will inform your carrier about this fact in Singapore, but you will, almost for certain, will have to tell then to the Japanese authorities too because you will have your last port of call, immediately before Shanghai, in Japan. You are advised to print out your flight ticket from Shanghai and to keep that printout with you. Also, you should have a confirmation of your accommodation in Shanghai because the blue form consists of several questions regarding your accommodation.
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