Today we decided to discuss several tips that will help you understand Chinese Airport Customs, Do’s and Don’ts, so when you arrive in China you’ll want to be able to get out of the arrival terminal and enjoy your trip. It’s important to understand how the on the ground operations work to get through speedily and without getting into trouble with immigration and customs. The good news is that Chinese staff are generally very approachable and interested in welcoming you to China – so if you make their life easy, you’ll be out and into China in a flash.
Do’s and Don’ts of Immigration
Before you reach customs, you’ll find immigration and these tips will help you get through in record time.
- Do have your passport ready and try have the visa page clearly indicated (use a sticky note) – this makes it easy for the immigration officer
- Do make sure you’ve completed and arrivals form – if you haven’t you’ll be sent back to fill one in anyway
- Do stand in one of the marked “foreigner” queues if they’re available – the local lines are longer and the staff by send you to another queue when you reach the front
- Don’t be aggressive or rude in your interactions with staff as this can quickly lead to problems
Do’s and Don’ts of Customs
The customs procedures in China are often very laid back, but don’t mistake the casual nature of the operation for a licence to misbehave. Here are our tips to make sure you get through customs without any hiccups.
- Do take a minute to understand your duty free allowances. It’s also always better to ask if you don’t understand them than to try and pass through without declaring any excess weight.
- Do find out what you need to declare before you enter customs, there are many rules regarding different items particularly money and expensive items you want to leave in China or take back with you
- Do ask for a customs declaration form if you need one
- Do spend the necessary time on a customs declaration form to offer up the most complete information possible
- Do ask for assistance from customs staff if you have any doubt
- Don’t take the risks of failing to declare something you should. In general, Chinese customs are really helpful and won’t punish you for a small mistake, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry
- Don’t become angry or aggressive with customs staff. That’s a very good way to get yourself into a lot of trouble and Chinese jails aren’t known for being welcoming places – all the stories you have heard about them are true.