Moving to China
I am strongly considering relocating to Shanghai early next year, and I wanted to get some advice on a few things.
1) What is the best method of getting a long term visa? I currently have a 1 year business visa, but its only good for 60 day stays.
2) what is the best area in Shanghai for an American to live (on a reasonable budget)?
3) Are their decent jobs available to westerners in Shanghai?
Thanks for the help!!
oranginaOctober 31, 2009, 05:52 AM
I am moving to China next month with the same visa. I think that is about as good as you can get the first time. But that does not mean you can only stay 60 days, just that after 60 days you have to leave the country and return to renew your visa. The longer you stay and behave responsibly, the more likely you are to get a better visa next time. And "leaving the country" just means a jaunt to HongKong, Macau or probably Tokyo in your case since you are going to Shanghai. I'll leave it to those more experienced than I to give you more advice, but i think you just need to make friends in the area you want to live and learn the ropes from them.
ousijiaNovember 03, 2009, 03:39 AM
In terms of where best to live, it really depends on what you are looking for. Do you want to live in downtown Shanghai or further out? Do you want to live in apartments/old houses or in compounds? There can be decent jobs out here, if you check in magazines such as That's Shanghai. The best thing to do is come over here and start networking! 在中国关系非常重要
pretzellogicNovember 03, 2009, 01:57 PM
I'm not sure what TESL is, but the 2 people that I know that got jobs in China from the US got them through people they already knew in China. One of them is still in Lanzhou teaching at a University there.
I'm told that if you're Christian, you can go through one of the missionary organizations to get a job.
I've seen plenty of websites that feature teaching English in China. At this point, there are probably still jobs available, but not many in Beijing/Shanghai. Not sure how badly you want to come to China, but if you're willing to go to interior China, you might still be able to get a job relatively quickly.
Once you get the job, expect a different kind of runaround, but then, you'll know the ropes (sort of).
Hope that helps.
bodaweiNovember 04, 2009, 02:38 AM
Like Pretel I am a bit puzzled about the visa/jobs questions - if you already have a business visa then you have a job?
Anyway, a comment on visas. If you just want to be in China, rather than work, you are less inconvenienced if you get a tourist visa because these last for three months at a time rather than 60 days. You can go to Korea, Japan, HK, Vietnam, Thailand etc. to renew, depending on which is most convenient or your desire for a change of scenery.
There are other ways of staying in China long-term, if you have your own business. You need to talk to some long-term expats to get advice on this.
If you don't already have a TESL teaching qualification it is a good idea to get one, because it will get you a better job. There are TESL jobs and TESL jobs.
pretzellogicOctober 31, 2009, 02:29 PM
zero1niner, orangina, I take it that since you both have business visas, that you already have jobs in the country where you're from, and that you have an "invite" into the local Chinese office? I do remember that's how I got my business visa, but that was in 2005.
mo_hanApril 08, 2010, 09:12 AM
I've been working in China and one of my workmates had the problem, that he had to leave the country after 60 days. Instead of flighing to Hongkong he took a flight to a city (can't remember which one it was) near the border and than took a taxi to cross the border. First this was a lot cheaper than flighing to Hongkong and second he could fligh back to Xi'an at the same day instead of spending one night in Hongkong. I don't know if thats an opportunity for you but it might be a good alternative.
mo_hanMay 23, 2010, 05:40 AM
Does anybody knows what regulations and tests you have to face to if you want to immigrate to China forever? I guess you won't have to leave the country every two month. Do you?
I'm thinking you mean like become a Chinese citizen, which I don't think you can do without having at least one parent being a Chinese national. China doesn't allow dual citizenship, so it would be interesting to know if you can become a Chinese citizen, and avoid visa hassles.
hey pretzell,thanks for this mate. I remember asking this question a couple of times over a year ago and I don't think I ever got a clear answer. That's very interesting. I like subsection 3 of Article 7:
"they have other legitimate reasons."
..hehe..I'd like to know just what sort of "other legitimate reasons" get you over the line. Maybe a crazy enthusiastic Sinophile [ hmmm, I'm very surprised but neither mdbg or nciku has a translation for Sinophile...don't the Chinese think there is such a thing...don't they know we love 'em out here?...hmm..might be time for another self coined word...speaking of which ...still empty..anyhow maybe 中爱好者 或者 中迷 】
Actually, I thought that was interesting also about "other legitimate reasons". But I made the mistake of thinking that here in the 21st century, the Chinese would have made the application form(s) available online so that you could see what you were getting into by applying for Chinese citizenship.
thecomakidNovember 04, 2009, 04:42 AM
2) It depends on your situation - your accommodation budget ("reasonable" is subjective), whether you have a family and therefore need schools nearby, whether you want greater contact with other expats - there are some serious expat ghettos which skews pricing for everything in a big way.
The important thing is to do your research, but be warned, the prices for accommodation you see in the expat press/websites are way inflated and you should always haggle. You do not need to live near the centre of Shanghai to enjoy the city life, taxis are cheap, buses are cheaper and the metro is fantastic. Ideally you want a place within walking distance of a metro station.