We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

tourist visa

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
136 posts
690 reviews
Save Topic
tourist visa

I am taking my 83-year old mother on an overseas odyssey this Summer, with Istanbul as the hinge--we will fly roundtrip to/from Ataturk International Airport from/to gateway Houston International. STA gave me an extremely lucrative price. A high point (pun intended) of our trip will be China, with emphasis on Tibet. Of course, a visa (tourist) for China is required, and I've closely monitored discussion on Tripadvisor and Lonely Planet Thorn Tree regarding the timing, etc., which has been invaluable.

I took my two children (then 12, daughter, & 14, son) abroad in 2004(those exploits are recorded in my 2nd & 3rd books, written under my pseudonym "Juanito Hayburg"), part of which involved journeying to China (where we were fortunately able to catch International Train K3 back to Moscow!) and I was able to obtain "open" (we were able to enter, but had no definite exit plan) visas for us then, but that was a decade ago; things inevitably change.

I was concerned about the latest visa requirements, but after much vacillation in considering which agency to use, my son, now a World-traveler for IBM, advised me to contact Wooee Visa [www.ExpressVisa2China.com; +1.832.455.2401] in HoustonTX-USA.

Following the website's explicit directions and speaking with rep Daisy, I had tourist visas in our passports for both myself and my mother WITHIN A MONTH! The visa is valid for a year, (expires 22APR2015) with no entry period to exceed 60 days. I was amazed! This is GREAT, and I highly recommend this visa service.

I will state that filling out the official visa request form was more challenging because an itinerary is expected, along with certain details, including specific addresses. Also, I did not included any indication of going to Tibet, which another TA poster had written would result in no visa.

In fact, if one is wanting to go Tibet, you need another permit (or more, depending upon where you are going) and must be part of a "tour group", which can be efficiently handled by an excellent tour company--I am using www.tibetCtrip.com (also LP recommended).

I now have virtually no qualms about this magnificent, once-in-a-lifetime journey (although, I do intend to return in the hopefully not-to-distant future--maybe as a retiree?-- to pedal the Friendship Highway!), with the only challenge of paying for it. I have been saving for years by using of a credit card in which I've been able to accumulate airmiles reward points, which will be quickly depleted.

Being a USA citizen, I have rarely ever been denied access when traveling, although Brother Nils & I were refused entry into Albania, East Germany and the Soviet Union when we pedaled that continent in 1981. Flash forward to 2004, my next overseas opportunity, and how the World had changed. A decade later, the World politic continues to change--mostly for the better, I might add, though there are still hotspots of problems.

I hope this latest update is useful to you. Keep on traveling--"You don't know until you go!"

1. Re: tourist visa

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post has been removed at the author's request. The author may post again if desired.

Posts on the TripAdvisor forums may be edited for a short period of time. Once the edit period has expired, authors may update their posts by removing and reposting them.

To read more about editing your posts, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/help/how_to_edit_your_posts

Removed on: 02 May 2014, 05:44
Edited: 02 May 2014, 05:44
Kunming, China
Level Contributor
3,157 posts
510 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: tourist visa

I removed my earlier post in order to rephrase it as a question. What I was questioning is whether or not your 83 year-old mother could get a Tibet Travel Permit (TTP.)

I've seen information to the effect that it can be tricky or impossible over age 65, but I realize these regulations can change from time to time and even apparently from agent to agent.

Edited: 02 May 2014, 05:49
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
50 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: tourist visa

I have heard many things about it. Most of the times I heard that it is difficult to get that kind TPP for that age. On the other hand, just a suggestion... I am a MD.. have you considered the health dangers of taking someone that age to Tibet?, that is actually one of the reasons why these kind of permits are denied to people that age.

Nuremberg, Germany
Level Contributor
7,161 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: tourist visa

Gee, you sound like you are going to visit another planet when you are simply on a trip to China. What's the big deal about that?? About 130 million tourist visas for China where issued in 2013 alone, can't be too difficult to get one. ;)

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
136 posts
690 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: tourist visa

I am taking my 83-year old mother on an overseas odyssey this Summer. A high point (pun intended) of our trip will be China, with emphasis on Tibet. Of course, a visa (tourist) for China is required, and I've closely monitored discussion on Tripadvisor.

I was concerned about the latest visa requirements, but after much vacillation in considering which agency to use, my son, advised me to contact Wooee Visa [www.ExpressVisa2China.com; +1.832.455.2401] in HoustonTX-USA.

Following the website's explicit directions and speaking with rep Daisy, I had tourist visas in our passports for both myself and my mother WITHIN A MONTH! The visa is valid for a year, (expires 22APR2015) with no entry period to exceed 60 days. I was amazed! This is GREAT, and I highly recommend this visa service.

I will state that filling out the official visa request form was more challenging because an itinerary is expected, along with certain details, including specific addresses. Also, I did not included any indication of going to Tibet, which another TA poster had written would result in no visa.

In fact, if you are wanting to go Tibet, you need another permit (or more, depending upon where you are going on the Tibetan plateau) and MUST be part of a "tour group", which can be easily arranged by the tour group of your choice.

I hope this latest update is useful to you. Keep on traveling--"You don't know until you go!"

Beijing, China
Level Contributor
5,000 posts
82 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: tourist visa

You appear to have mistakenly re-posted your original message.

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
136 posts
690 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: tourist visa

Hi again, ZhongguoKM (and Georgetraveler2014, IaOwei): You have brought up some very good & salient points. Perhaps I have jumped the gun; as IaOwei wrote, once all of the documentation has been provided, visas can actually be obtained rather easily--unless you are concerned about other aspects, as I am. Both ZhongguoKM & Georgetraveler2014 write my concerns rather precisely. Even though I've received reassurance from my Lhasa travel agent, will the TPP really be issued, especially to my mother (who will be 84 by that time)? Regarding my planning out a trip like this which includes significant risk, not only to me (I'm 57) but especially to my mother. On numerous occasions (usually weekly), I speak with her and her enthusiasm is unbounded. She has had near-death experiences, pulled through and can't wait to go on. Several years ago, I took her to Caye Caulker, Belize, where my children earned their PADI dive cards. Even though I signed her up for the diving, in no way was she medically fit, so instead she & I snorkeled, swam with the rays, explored, & rested. We have pix of that great adventure, and she is ready for more. She WANTS more. The hazards are clear and obvious, but who am I to refuse her? The authorities might, but not me; she is ready and willing-and her GP has given his blessing. Also, I am her fully-empowered executor, the perfect person to be escorting. Should the inevitable happen while we are underway, she has explicitly stated her DNR. I accept the responsibility, although a few persons think I'm being quite irresponsible. But, then, I'm an expert bicyclist with over 100,000miles/160,000kms pedaling experience, both touring & commuting, and I am extremely aware of the risk EVERYBODY has just from existing on our crowded planet, whether pedaling, motoring, crossing the street or mountain pass. I'll not be morbid and say this is her "deathbed wish", but I also know that my father, her husband, who departed our World in 1986, TWO months before my wife & I went to the Columbus School, Medellin, Colombia, for a year of teaching, had been making plans to visit us there. He now has the grandest obelisk in the Lake SpringMO cemetery; I know he'd rather have spent that money on traveling than such a gravestone. Should the inevitable occur, a proper memorial will be held, ashes spread appropriately. I personally think that, while the risk is greater at her age, nothing more serious than my losing $$$$ is likely to occur. I am so grateful and appreciative for your concern; thank you. Xiexie! Thu Je Che!

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
136 posts
690 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: tourist visa

Hi, Qupnicely--Not quite; my original posting included a huge amount of personal information concerning previous travels to the PRC, as well as specifically naming other agencies, my writings, etc., which likely made it unusable.

Lhasa, Xizang, China
Level Contributor
582 posts
1 review
Save Reply
9. Re: tourist visa

Thank you John, and I wish all goes very well for your mom and you and families! I will be more than happy to arrange a nice trip for you and friends next time. Your recommendation means more than important to our agency. Tony from Lhasa, Tibet

Lhasa, Xizang, China
Level Contributor
582 posts
1 review
Save Reply
10. Re: tourist visa

We delayed our listing request from tripadvisor and people feel not easy to find our website www.tibetCtrip.com on trip advisor. We will try our best to list our website. We run the Tibet tours 11 years ago and people start to write reviews here from 2009, please have e.g tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294222-i6446-k291… and tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294222-i6446-k654…

But we should have list our website www.tibetctrip.com long time ago so till now we can have more than 500 reviews from tripadvisors. Anyway we are trying to improve our Tibet travel services and more clients will be satisfied with our service. Thanks.