You will agree with me that visa application and international travel are synonymous. If you intend to travel to another country such as Hong Kong for whatever reason be it work, tourism, business, or education, an HK visa application is essential for entry. A visa is basically an endorsement. It’s a document that grants you the right to enter or stay in a given country for a specified period of time for whatever reason.
Getting a visa for Hong Kong special administrative region is not a walk in the park for many individuals and businesses. Sudden immigration department legislation changes, Visa specific requirements, not to mention the bureaucratic nature of Chinese Embassy in Visa applications can be a headache for many people especially those keen on establishing businesses in competitive administrative regions such as Hong Kong or simply want to travel and tour China.
In a short while, we shall shed light on the common mistakes that people should avoid during HK Visa applications. Before that, let’s take a look at what you need to know about Hong Kong Visa application and the requirements. For starters, you need to know that not everyone is required to have a visa in order to enter Hong Kong.
Not everyone is required to have a visa prior to making travel arrangements.
Here are instances when you are required to for HK visa application
- You hail from a country that is not visa-exempt
There are a total of 19 countries whose citizens cannot gain entry into Hong Kong without a valid visa. If you are a nationality from any of those countries, you need to apply for a visa from your nearest Chinese embassy prior to making Hong Kong travel arrangements. If your visa is approved, expect to receive it within 4 weeks after application.
- You hail from a visa-exempt country but you wish to extend your stay in HK more than the visa policy allows
Currently, citizens from 170 countries can enter and stay in Hong Kong without a visa for a given period. What this means is that they are visa exempt. However, there is a catch. Citizens from visa exempt countries can only visit or stay for a predetermined period of days or time.
For instance, UK citizens can stay in HK for a period of 180 days without the need to apply for a Visa. All they need is a passport and they are good to go. In a case scenario where they wish to stay for a longer period upon arrival, they will be required to apply for a visa from the nearest Chinese embassy or immigration department.
This could be a work permit, a residence visa, to mention a few.
Nationalities from 29 countries are required to apply for a transit visa even if they have zero intentions of leaving the transit airport area. If you hail from one of those countries, make an application from the nearest Chinese embassy and submit the proper application form with all the required supporting documents prior to making travel arrangements.
Having looked at the instances when you should apply for a HK visa application be it a work permit, student visa, dependent visa, employment visa, etc. let’s now take a look at the common mistakes to avoid during the HK visa application process.
- Incorrectly filled out or incomplete application form
While you might be excited to visit Hong Kong, don’t let your excitement cloud your judgment. Ensure that you take your time and carefully fill out the visa application form. An incomplete or incorrectly filled out application form will have your HK visa application denied or cause an inconvenience due to delays in visa processing. If you are unsure of yourself, enlist the services of a professional for a seamless Hong Kong visa application process prior to making travel arrangements.
- Not meeting eligibility criteria
Are you traveling to HK for work, tourism, business, or to reside there? How long do you intend to stay? Whatever your reason or the purpose of your visit, it’s essential that you meet the eligibility criteria for the visa application in question be it a work permit, residence visa or tourism visa. Hong Kong, like other jurisdictions, offers a number of visas which include student, work permit, residence, dependent, tourist visas to mention a few.
All these visas require that you meet certain requirements such as having a valid passport, enough money in your bank account to cater for your trip and stay, a clean criminal record, correct documents, etc. Ensure that you meet the set requirements to avoid delays in visa processing and even denial.
- Providing misleading or false information
Honesty is a virtue. Do not under any circumstances provide information that is false or misleading. To do so would result in your visa not only being denied but you will also be barred from entering Hong Kong. Provide true and factual information on your visa application form!
- Going for the interview process unprepared
HK visa interview process can be rigorous and quite tasking for an individual who is not prepared. Prepare to answer questions about your background, your reasons for visiting Hong Kong, how long you intend to stay in HK, your future plans, and many more. Not being prepared could lead to delays in visa processing or outright denial of the same.
- Not providing enough documentation
Your visa application should be accompanied by a number of supporting documents. The accompanying supporting documents should be in line with the kind of visa you are applying for. Different visas require various documentation such as proof of employment, letter of invitation, financial support, and accommodation, to mention a few. With different visas requiring different documents, ensure that your documentation is in order prior to visiting the nearest Chinese Embassy for visa application.
- Being clueless about the visa renewal and extension process
Non-renewal of your Hong Kong visa could lead to serious legal repercussions and even deportation by the Chinese authorities. It is important that you be conversant with the visa renewal and extension process. When will your visa expire? How do you go about renewing it? How many days does it take before its renewed? How do you apply for an extension? You need to be familiar with the process to avoid a scenario where you are on the wrong side of the China Republic laws.
How Primasia can help you for HK visa application
With businesses continually setting up shop in HK, there is a constant need for working visas for staff. At Primasia, we pride ourselves in having the expertise, experience, and know-how to make visa applications for your work staff settling in HK. We will help you with immigration services, corporate visas, investment visas in HK, a variety of market entry solutions, and work visa applications among others.
Stuck on the Hk visa application? Do you find the requirements for the whole process complicated and time intensive? Primasia promises to make the process a breeze. Contact us today!