China has witnessed a fresh outbreak of the COVID-19 virus leading to new lockdown and quarantine measures and the release of new travel updates for foreign nationals. One of the new updates is the China visa vaccine mandate; this mandate is compulsory for visitors, especially those coming from states with known cases of the pandemic.
Traveling to China can be an experience of a lifetime, but it can also be one’s worst nightmare if one contracts the virus or is turned back at the airport or border for not having a vaccine certificate. To help make your upcoming trip memorable, we explain all you need to know about the Chinese vaccine mandate not only for COVID-19 but for other viruses.
Do Visitors Require Vaccine Certificates To Enter China?
The short answer to this question is yes, they do. China requires proof of vaccination against many ailments, including Covid 19 and Yellow Fever, from travelers coming from selected countries. Due to the presence of polio in some parts of China, a polio vaccine may be required from visitors from polio–prone countries. This is why it is important to take personal responsibility for vaccinating against these viruses before boarding a flight to China.
However, those with a negative COVID-19 PCR test result issued at least 48 hours before leaving their base do not need to show a vaccination certificate for Covid. Having a negative result means that you don’t have Covid; therefore, taking a vaccine is not necessary.
The government of China does not have a quarantine measure in place for all visitors, but in cases where the visitor is showing symptoms of Covid, they will be placed under observation at a quarantine facility for some time.
What Should A Vaccination Certificate Have?
Only certificates issued by the reputable government or private medical facilities will be accepted by the Chinese government. All visitors who have been vaccinated must upload their vaccination certificate to an online platform to generate a health code or certified declaration. The certificate must have the name of the vaccine, issuing institution, negative nucleic acid, and an IgM test for antibodies.
The Ministry of Health will issue a health code to the visitor after verifying all the documents submitted.
There is also a different arrangement for visitors from a third country who received their vaccination outside China. The health code must be applied for in advance of their visit before they depart their host countries.
Vaccines For Visitors
In this section, we want to review the vaccines expected from visitors coming to China for business, tourism or to visit foreign family members. Note that these vaccines are based on the regions the visitors are coming from
COVID-19: Recommended for unvaccinated visitors from countries with a history of outbreaks.
Hepatitis A: Recommended for most visitors
Hepatitis B: Recommended for most visitors
Typhoid: Recommend to prevent a fever outbreak. The pill lasts about two years, while the vaccine lasts five years. Vaccines taken must have been stored in a refrigerator to preserve them.
Yellow Fever: Recommended for visitors from regions or countries with a history of yellow fever outbreaks. This is not mandated in Macau and Hong Kong.
Japanese Encephalitis: This is recommended depending on the visitor’s itinerary and whether they have been issued a short or long stay visa. Travelers to the following vulnerable regions must get this vaccine: Qinghai, Tibet, and Xinjiang.
Rabies: Recommend for visitors bringing pets to China
Chicken Pox: Recommended for visitors that have not received the vaccine before
These are some of the vaccine requirements for travelers coming from selected regions, but there are others. Visitors are advised to check with the Chinese embassy to know which vaccines to take before applying for their visa. Some of the certificates may be requested by the embassy during the application process, while others will only be requested at the airport.
It is important to provide only valid vaccination certificates so you don’t run the risk of application rejection or deportation.
Also, ensure that you stay abreast of the latest health update as issued by the ministry of health and make travel plans based on the information.
All vaccine certificates must be dated, and the issuing institution must be clearly stated. Furthermore, the name of the vaccine must be included in the certificate, as immigration and health authorities in China can vet it.
China visa vaccine mandate was put in place to protect the local population and visitors coming from abroad and to maintain disease control. The authorities take the issue of health and vaccination very seriously and will deport visitors that don’t comply with the health codes. To get a health declaration code, submit your certificates online once you arrive in China.