UNITED STATES NEWS

China to ease visa requirements for U.S. travelers in latest bid to boost tourism

Dec 30, 2023, 12:53 PM

China will ease visa restrictions for people visiting from the United States, the country’s latest effort to attract foreign travelers since reopening its borders earlier this year.

Starting Jan. 1, American tourists will no longer need to submit round-trip air tickets, proof of hotel reservations, itineraries or invitations to China, according to a notice posted online Friday by the Chinese Embassy in Washington.

The simplified application process is intended to “further facilitate people-to-people exchanges between China and the United States,” the notice said.

The move comes as China has struggled to rejuvenate its tourism sector after three years of strict pandemic measures, which included mandatory quarantines for all arrivals. While those restrictions were lifted earlier this year, international travelers have been slow to return.

In the first half of this year, China recorded 8.4 million entries and exits by foreigners, down from 977 million for all of 2019, the last year before the pandemic, according to immigration statistics.

In another bid to boost tourism, China announced last month that it would allow visa-free entry for citizens of France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Malaysia for up to 15 days.

The one-year trial program signaled China’s “high-level opening up to the outside world,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said at a daily briefing.

But China’s efforts to entice American tourists may face other headwinds. International flights between the two countries, which are set by a bilateral agreement, remain well below pandemic levels, though they have slowly increased in recent months.

Over the summer, amid deteriorating relations between Beijing and Washington, the U.S. recommended Americans reconsider traveling to China, citing the risk of wrongful detentions and exit bans.

“The People’s Republic of China (PRC) government arbitrarily enforces local laws, including issuing exit bans on U.S. citizens and citizens of other countries, without fair and transparent process under the law,” the advisory said.

United States News

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump hugs and kisses the American flag a...

Associated Press

Trump calls himself a ‘proud political dissident’ in CPAC speech

In a CPAC speech, Trump painted an apocalyptic vision of the future if President Joe Biden wins again as the two prepare for a rematch.

1 hour ago

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump gestures to the audience after spea...

Associated Press

Donald Trump wins South Carolina GOP primary, beating Nikki Haley in her home state

Trump has now swept every contest that counted for Republican delegates, with wins already in Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada.

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Why AP called South Carolina for Trump: Race call explained

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Associated Press declared Donald Trump the winner of the South Carolina primary as soon as polls closed on Saturday. The race call was based on a comprehensive survey of South Carolina Republican primary voters that showed him defeating Nikki Haley by wide margins in her home state. Declaring a winner as […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Former NFL player Richard Sherman arrested on suspicion of DUI, authorities in Washington state say

SEATTLE (AP) — Former NFL player Richard Sherman was arrested early Saturday on suspicion of driving under the influence, according to the Washington State Patrol. No other details about the arrest were immediately available, said Trooper Rick Johnson, a patrol spokesperson. A spokesperson for the King County Prosecutor’s Office said nothing had been sent to […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Lithium ion battery caused fatal fire in New York City apartment building, officials say

NEW YORK (AP) — A lithium ion battery sparked a fire that killed one person and injured 17 others at a New York City apartment building, fire officials said Saturday. Friday’s two-alarm fire began just after 2 p.m. on the third floor of a six-story building in Harlem. New York Police Department video shows firefighters […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Federal prosecutors accuse a New Mexico woman of fraud in oil and gas royalty case

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico businesswoman is accused of defrauding the U.S. government and two Native American tribes of taxes and royalties due to them for oil and gas that her companies extracted from leased federal and tribal lands. Federal prosecutors announced this week that Teresa McCown recently was indicted by a grand […]

4 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

...

Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.

...

Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

China to ease visa requirements for U.S. travelers in latest bid to boost tourism