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What’s it like to be deported from China?

Photo by Holgi

No one wants to end up being deported from China – and we certainly hope it doesn’t happen to you! – but just in case something does ever go wrong, you might want to know how it operates. This article explains the procedures and the details.



Deportation is usually mandated by the Public Security Bureau (PSB), and is overseen by its Entry and Exit Administration Office. The office will seize the offender’s temporary or permanent residence permit, their work permit, their Alien Employment Handbook any foreign expert certificates and any other permits that have enabled the person to stay in China. Generally their passport will not be seized if the intention is to deport them, unless there is to be a period of jail time or detention prior to deportation (for information on when your passport can be confiscated legally, see this article, and for more information on being arrested see this article).

The date of deportation is determined by the court or PSB, depending on the circumstances surrounding the individual’s case. They may be made to leave immediately, or they may have to serve a detention or jail term first.

When it is time to be deported, they will be usually be taken to the nearest port – usually an airport but potentially a border checkpoint – and the administration will report their personal information, arrival time, transport method departure time and flight number or bus number to the port’s police and frontier inspection station. 

The Entry and Exit Administration officers will accompany the deported individual to make sure that they get on the flight/bus/train and wait until they leave the country.


Booking the exit flight

The deported individual must buy their own flight/bus/train tickets for departure at the nearest port; they can choose whichever carrier company they prefer so long as they do not overstay the departure time dictated by the court or PSB. 

The cost of the flight/bus/train home should be paid by the individual. If they don’t have the money to pay, it should be covered by the embassies or consulates of their home country. If the embassy refuses to pay for whatever reason, or if their country doesn’t set up embassies or consulates, the Chinese government will cover the cost.

Deported individuals will most likely be blacklisted from returning to China for a set period, typically 10 years. 


Deportation vs being ordered to leave

Not everyone who is made to leave China is deported; some are merely “ordered to leave”. This means that they are given a fixed period in which to leave China. They will also not be blacklisted from returning to the country for a decade, unlike deported people, although they will most likely be banned from re-entering for two years. 

People who are made to leave must depart China by themselves and will also not be seen off at the airport by government officials, but if they choose to stay in China after the period that they are told to leave then they can be subject to a ‘proper’ deportation and blacklisting. If someone is not sure whether you have been blacklisted, they can enquire at the Exit and Entry Office of the PSB – more information on this can be found here.


Useful Chinese words and phrases 

驱逐出境 qūzhú chūjìng To deport
离境时间 líjìng shíjiān Departure time
口岸 kǒuàn Port


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8 Responses to What’s it like to be deported from China?

  • For work permit to work in China, one needs to go through medical check up in a certified hospital in China. How can I download the BG-14 form, the HIV form and the syphilis form suggested that one have to bring to the hospital.



  • I just paid $2000 for plane ticket but they holding her for visa fee to clear the cost $3500.. If not she still remaining at deport camp. Please respond!!!

  • What is worst scenario ?

  • What if she going to jail. How long will be?

  • Can U.S. Embassy help to get her home? Or some other way. She said Chinese gov’t won’t help to pay the ticket .. It cost $2045 to bail her out..

  • My girl friend went to China for business trip. She got robbed and lost her wallet with passport and credit card. Top of that he had emergency surgery (apedex) without medical insurance. Hospital holding her for 8 month now she is in deportation camp. According to your web site about if you don’t have money. U.S. Embassy or Chinese gov’t will pay for the plane ticket but she told me that in the deportation camp they have few Americans there’s no one to help..if not going to jail. What can you tell me about this situation. I paid $2000 for court processing fee to send her to camp..to come home..

  • Please I have similar issue had an M visa but at Beijing port of entry I fail to show my business invitation letter so the immigration assumed I was there for different purpose which I was not so after few hours or racist interrogation my visa and entry stamp was cancelled and sent back home now I want to apply again but with a new passport but me reading the 10 years ban buffels my thinking weather to not waste my time cause I intend applying as a new applicant who has never been issued Chinese visa ,please I need advice only and not creticizers thank you u

    • Hi Zabrinma. We are sorry to hear what happened to you. It is still unknown whether you were simply denied entry, or whether you were officially “ordered to leave” or “deported.” If it is simply an entry denial, generally you won’t have any problems applying for a new visa, so long as you have all of the required documents.

      However, if you were ordered to leave, you probably won’t be able to obtain a new visa for another two years, and if you were deported, you will be denied entry for the next ten years. Applying with a new passport will not help much if you were ordered to leave or deported, as the old passport number is usually still shown on the new passport, and all visa applications and entry information are recorded.

      In your case, the chance that you were ordered to leave or deported is not high, as you didn’t actually enter the country at all. You could check our guide on how to find whether you are blacklisted or not, although it is somewhat cumbersome to achieve. You could also consult the embassy in your own country and enquire with them before submitting the documents. As the embassy has the final say on whether to give you a visa or not, if they say okay, then there should be no problem. Good luck!

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