Wishing to travel to Hong Kong?
Hong Kong is officially known as Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) an autonomous territory and former British colony in South East China, the entire territory was returned to China in 1997. As a special administrative region, Hong Kong’s system of government is separate from that in mainland China. Hong Kong is an English speaking territory. In this article, we will show you how to obtain a visa to Hong Kong.
Hong Kong has the largest number of skyscrapers in the world. The territory ranks 7th on the UN Human Development Index and has the seventh-highest life expectancy in the world. It is home to one of the world’s most well-developed public transportation systems and hundreds of companies. Little wonder it is a sought after destination for business and pleasure.
To travel to Hong Kong, most people must obtain a visa before departure. Having the necessary visa requirements and following the process will ensure you have a smooth application process.
How do I apply for a Hong Kong Visa?
In order to obtain a Hong Kong visa, you should follow the necessary processes. You can apply for a Hong Kong visa from the Chinese embassy or consulate nearest you. Alternatively, you can also submit your visa application to the HKSAR Immigration Department either directly by post or through a local sponsor.
Whatever the reason for your visit, -business, pleasure, tourism, studies, etc, you should locate the Chinese consulate in your area of jurisdiction to apply for a HK visa.
What documents do I need for a Hong Kong Visa?
Firstly, you need to obtain a Hong Kong visa application form and the Declaration form online and print out the hard copy.
Alternatively, get them from the office of the Consulate General Chinese embassy. Be sure to fill in your details in the form and ensure you append your signature. Complete the Declaration form and attach the following documents.
HK Visa Application Requirements
- International passport with at least 6 months validity.
- A recently acquired passport-sized photograph. You must properly and truthfully fill out Visa Application Form and attach one passport-size photo.
- Photocopy of data page of your passport
- Applicants on invitation should present a letter of invitation duly signed by the person inviting you. Include your Hong Kong guarantor (or company name)’s address, telephone number (if none, please fill in form with “No guarantor”).
- Copy of the person’s residence permit or national ID card or international passport.
Ensure you pay the necessary visa fees for filing.
- In all cases, applicants must present proof of basic travelling allowance sufficient to cover your entire stay in HK
- Bank account statement for the last 6 months duly stamped and signed by your bank.
- Evidence of flight booking indicating airline, departure and arrivals.
- Evidence of hotel reservation.
- Copy of other country’s Resident Permit (if any).
If you have previous Hong Kong visas in your passport, ensure to make copies and present them along with your application.
There are additional requirements for those seeking a business visa. These are:
– An Original invitation from Hong Kong’s host company
– Original letter of introduction from your employer in Nigeria indicating your designation, nature of your employment, passport number and salary, duly stamped by the company.
Remember you must include an active email address and phone number in the application form. Bear in mind that all documents and application shall be sent to Hong Kong immigration department for processing and approvals. Allow time for processing because the consul can only issue visa according to the response they obtained from HK immigration department.
Do I need a sponsor?
Having a sponsor does help your Hong Kong visa application. The person must be a citizen or legally resident in the territory. He/she must be over 18 years of age. A sponsor could be your potential employer, a relative or a friend. You should include the sponsor’s name in your application. The sponsor can fill the sponsor’s form and go to the immigration department to submit your application form.
What happens after I submit my application?
After submitting your visa application, you may be asked to appear in person at the consulate for the visa interview and other formalities. Note the processing time begins from the day of submitting the completed visa application form.
How long does it take?
From the time of submission of your Hong Kong visa application, it can take 6-8 weeks to process. On the official website, it’s stated that all applications whose visa documents sent to HK immigration will get a response within 4 weeks. If Immigration needs to make further inquiries it may take longer. Be sure to give enough time before your intended date of travel in order to accommodate processing and feedback.
How much does it cost?
Hong Kong visa fees for an ordinary visa costs $190. There are service charges for other connected processes.
You can access the visa forms and get more information at https://www.gov.hk/en/nonresidents/visarequire/general/index.htm.
Are there any exemptions?
Yes there are. You don’t need a visa or entry permit i for any purpose if you hold any of the following travel documents:
Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Passport, British National (Overseas) Passport, Hong Kong Certificate of Identity, Hong Kong Re-entry permit (for entry from the Mainland of China and the Macao Special Administrative Region only), Hong Kong Seaman’s Identity Book, Hong Kong Document of Identity for Visa Purposes provided that the document is valid or the holder’s limit of stay in Hong Kong has not expired.
Also, if you have travel documents bearing one of the following endorsements:
“Holder’s eligibility for Hong Kong permanent identity card verified.”
“The holder of this travel document has the right to land in Hong Kong. (Section 2AAA, Immigration Ordinance, Cap. 115, Laws of Hong Kong)”
Hong Kong Permanent Identity Card.
Note that nationals of certain countries can gain access into Hong Kong for periods of time ranging from 14-90 days without a visa. Please visit the Hong Kong immigration website for a list of countries that are eligible for entry into the country sans visa.