Pre-departure Preparation

-Apply at your closest Chinese Embassy for a Student Visa (X Visa)with your original JW202 form if you will study in China for more than 3 months.

-Apply at your closest Chinese Embassy for a Business Visa (F Visa)with your original JW202 formif you will study in China for less than3 months.

-Apply at your closet Chinese Embassy for a Tourist Visa(L Visa) if you will study in a short-term program.
To find more information about Chinese visas and the Embassy locations, please visit

L visa is mainly for tourists staying in China for less than 30 days. You may apply for a Tourist Visa (L Visa) and change to a Business Visa (F Visa) or Student Visa (X visa) after you have registered at a Chinese university.)

Flight Information

Below are commonly used websites to book flights from the US to China. To find the most economic prices on flights, we suggest you book early!

Recommended Items to Pack

Letter of Admission to the university

Airline ticket/itinerary

Calling card or Skype credit (optional)

$100 in local currency and $100 in US dollars

Two debit cards (Call your bank before you leave and let them know you are leaving the country. Otherwise they will deactivate your card.)

Certifiedcopy of your passport and visa as well as an electronic version (in case your passport is lost or stolen)

Medications in original containers (your prescription may not be available in China)

Prescriptions for any medication you bring (Make sure that your doctor uses the generic name of the medication and not a brand name.)

Clothing suitable for the time of year and climate of the city you will be living in (check weather at

Toiletries and personal hygiene items are readily available in China. You may wish to bring small amounts to use when you first arrive.

Feminine products (Tampons are not easily accessible in China)

Plug converter 

Laptop with charger

Cell-phone (the connection will likely not work, but you can connect to Wi-Fi)

Camera with charger

Eye glasses/sunglasses

Small daily backpack


When you become a foreigner in a strange city, you will be out of your element and experience new challenges. Learn to embrace the unexpected! Students study abroad and return different people. You will likely grow and you may even impress yourself with the way you handle unexpected situations. 

Language barrier:

There are a lot of Chinese that can speak basic English, especially on a university campus. However, Chinese population is as you know, the largest in the world, so you will encounter people on a daily basis that do not speak any English. We recommend that you take Chinese courses to help you get by.

New patterns of behavior:

Get ready to experience customs, traditions and daily habits of Chinese that will surprise you. Some of them you may like and adopt yourself and others may bother you. Pay attention to your behavior and remember you are a guest in their home and should respect their culture. This is a time for your mind to open and wonder why one country does one thing and another does something different. You will be a master at using chopsticks by the end of your studies and may even prefer to use them when you go home! Get ready to learn outside of the classroom by observing all of the new things around you!

True China supports you! 

The reasons for the difficulties may not be readily apparent to you, but sometimes they can be traced to cultural differences that are related to various and often contradictory forces in Chinese culture. If you are having trouble understanding some aspect of your life in China, True China staff are always ready to help.   

If you would like to set up a meeting (in person or on Skype) with a staff member we would be happy to help you by answering any of your questions. If you don’t understand why people stare at you or haven’t figured out how to greet a Chinese friend, schedule a meeting with us. Do you hug? Do you give a kiss on the cheek? Do you shake their hand? Don’t worry, we are here to support you!

A Positive Attitude 

Living and studying abroad is an amazing experience that can best be achieved with a positive attitude. If you get lost in the city, instead of feeling frustrated, worried and upset, take a second to look up and enjoy the place you ended up. Keep your cool and assess the situation. Can you go somewhere to connect to Wi-Fi and figure out where you are? Can you take a cab by showing the cab driver your address written in Chinese that you saved in your wallet (for those that don’t speak Chinese)? Can you call a friend? Can you get to the subway? Embracing challenges with a positive attitude will make these experiences memorable. You may even look back at them and laugh!