Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

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Xinjiang permit/ visa notification?

Post by Stefvdp »

Hey everybody, I'm in tehran on my bicycle arranging visas for the CA countries. I am now trying to figure out my planning to arrange Chinese visa with my 2nd passport at home in Brussels.

Did anyone hear about a permit to travel to Xinjiang? See article below in dutch:

(...) "Daarnaast moet een ieder die van plan is Xinjiang of Tibet te bereizen, een zg Visa Notification hebben. Dit is een officiele uitnodigingsbrief, afgegeven door een Chinese overheid, bv provincie of stadsbestuur. De Visa Notification geeft wel aan hoe lang men mag verblijven maar de beslissing om dit daadwerkelijk af te geven ligt nog altijd bij de ambassade. (...)"

My issue : I am planning to fake flight tickets in and out of the country and not mention xinjiang in itinerary for maximum chance of success cuz I have Turkey stamp already.
-> I read that it's no problem to enter overland and do the visa process with fake flights. Still correct?
-> is there any problem to enter china through xinjiang (kazakh-uruumqi-xian) without requesting the visa permit and not mentioning this province on itinerary?

I am currently in process for uzbek visa without loi and turkmen transit visa after. Fingers crossed and feedback will follow :)
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Re: Xinjiang permit/ visa notification?

Post by steven »

Never heard of such a thing for Xinjiang. I think they just mean Tibet. Please let us know how it went in Tehran, reports indicate embassies are giving out long-term visas for cyclists again. Don't mention Xinjiang on your itinerary, that's best indeed.
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Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by jmarchioro »

Greetings from Bukhara, first time poster, enjoying this forum on my trip here through some of the "stans".

I have an urgent query and am hoping someone can provide up to date information, TIA. I am planning to go from Sary Tash to Kashgar next Thursday (13 September). Yesterday I had a nice meal at Temir's Restaurant in the old city in Bukhara, and there was a large Chinese tour group there when I arrived, and they finished eating and I was waiting for my food to come out, and I heard them speaking Mandarin so I thought what the hell.... And I went up to one of them and started chatting with him in Chinese, and he told me about their trip from Beijing to there and on to Turkmenistan, and I told him about mine. And in the course of that he told me that a special permit is now required for foreigners entering Xinjiang. I have been through this before with Tibet, I had to apply in Chongqing and wait a couple of days when I went there in 2009, but had looked fairly carefully at posts on this site and elsewhere and had never seen any indication that such a pass is now required for Xinjiang.... Until this. He assured me that such a special permit is necessary and it is 很难批 (very hard to receive approval), but that I could try applying through a tour agency. that will be not be easy given that I have 6 days left and will be staying at a different place every night from here on (Samarkand, Dushanbe, etc,).

My circumstances: US citizen, have visited China 13 times, mostly for visits of one month each time, never had any trouble with the authorities, never overstayed a visa, currently have a valid 10 year visa, and have been to Xinjiang once before (for 3 days in 2008, right after the Beijing Olympics). All the hotel rooms and several long distance train tickets for China (including Kashgar-Urumqi and Urumqi-Dunhuang) have already been purchased online and I have vouchers for them that I can redeem in Kashgar..... I have a list of all the hotel names and addresses, and saved screen shots of their info when I booked them on Booking.com, so I can pull that up on my computer easily as well. In other words, I have planned it all out, have reservations and so on and can easily demonstrate, and can demonstrate by explaining it all in Chinese.

So to make this overly long post short: What are my options here? Was that Chinese guy at Temir's correct? Is such a pass obligatory? If so, where should I try to get it? Samarkand? Dushanbe? Osh? Through a travel agency? (That is how I got my permit for Tibet, I went to a travel agency in Chongqing and filled out the forms and paid the fee, then waited several days).

TIA to anyone who can let me know about the above ASAP, and sorry to post in haste like this. FWIW, I tried to watch Josh Summers video about this online here but the Internet service at this hotel is very slow and it was not possible. I will try again in the meantime. TIA.

John Marchioro
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Re: Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by bwv812 »

If a special permit was required, I expect we would have heard about it here pretty quick. As it is, in the last few days we have reports from people passing through Xinjiang without permits, so I expect the guy you talked to was wrong (which isn't surprising, as I'm not sure why a guide for Chinese tourists would know).
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Re: Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by jacoblab1 »

Hope this doesn't become a thing... I'm planning on going from the Pakistan to Kashgar and then into Kyrgystan next summer, and then a few months later going from Almaty-Urumqi-Turpan-Gansu.

Requiring a permit would really mess up my plans.
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Re: Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by jmarchioro »

Thanks for the responses. That Chinese guy was just some blowhard from Beijing, nice enough guy, but he should stick to subjects he actually knows something about.... Apparently he was simply wrong. It certainly put me into a brief panic, however.... You never know when the authorities in Beijing might do something like this. FWIW, I visited the western part of Sichuan three years back, and I had read articles in the World Daily, a Chinese language newspaper published in the US, about restrictions on Westerners visiting places like Daocheng and Yading and the like. I was never asked to show a special permit or anything the entire time I was in the area, which was almost 10 full days, same with NW Yunnan, where I spent a few more days... And I travelled overland with Tibetan drivers, the whole bit. Some of this stuff about controls in China is overblown, though I do think such controls are in force for foreigners visiting Tibet, they certainly were when I visited in 2009.

Thanks again,

J. Marchioro
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Re: Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by Jealgu »

As a genersl rule Chinese citizens do not know much about the pecularities fireigners face. I once met a guy who insisted that I could go freely and independent to the TAR.

About the Tibetan areas outside the TAR. Normally yoy can travel there, but not when there is civil unrest and not around particular dates such as Tibetan new year. So the World Daily was probabky rightvat the time, and actually is right that restrictions regurlarly do appear.
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Re: Special permit required to enter Xinjiang?

Post by laurent_rio »

Only some permit in xinjiang area required

for example:
1. Bayanbulak (drive from Karamay to Kuqa via Bayanbulak)
2. If u want to visit Khunjerab Pass from Kashgar/Tashkurgan (and u dont have Pakistan Visa)
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