Switching from visitor visa to student visa

i just came to taiwan on a 60-day visitor’s visa and have decided to take a chinese language course. i’ve applied to the Mandarin Learning Center at Chinese Culutre University (by Ta-an park), and they tell me before I can even start class I need a student visa.

Why? Is this uniform for all Chinese language schools, or am I encountering difficulty uniquely at this particular one. I just got to Taipei and now I have to leave and come back. Why can’t I make a visa run when my visitor visa expires.

Thanks for any help.

The person you talked to doesn’t know what they are talkign about. There is no such thing as a ‘student visa’. Go back, and talk to someone else about it.


so…then i don’t really need a new visa?

i get a new story everytime I go in there. plus when you walk into their office, suddenly everybody puts there head down and pretends to be too busy to do any work.

[quote=“Bu Lai En”]The person you talked to doesn’t know what they are talkign about. There is no such thing as a ‘student visa’. Go back, and talk to someone else about it.

Brian[/quote]Would it be a visitor’s visa for the purpose of study then ? There are visas that students get, can you tell us what that is instead of what it isn’t ?

I’ve gone through the process once of applying for a ‘student visa’ in Hong Kong when going to the MTC at SHITda. There really isn’t a specific ‘student visa’ really, but I did have to show a list of ‘things’ to the person at the Chunghwa Travel Service there in Hong Kong, like my acceptane letter, documents of financial support/ability, etc. In the end, it was a 60-day visa, like any other visitor visa, excpet that this one could be extened up to two times, for a total of 180 days if I was sitll in school at the MTC.

Now, if you already have a visitor visa (regardless of how you got it on the application form), I don’t know why they would reject you. I’ve gone to the SHITda MTC before with just my ARC and no specific ‘student visa’.

Yeah, you can tick purpose of visit as study, but it’s still just a visitor’s visa, and that’s what you’ve got at the moment right.

I suggest you do some searching here, because you’ll find out all you need about visa’s and study, but it’s hard to give you some advice wothout knowing what the problem is. Maybe Wenhua want you to have a 60-day extendable visa and you’ve got a non-extendable. Even this won’t stop you, because if the university enrols you, you can then get that non-extendable changed ot an extendable without leaving the country.

You’re going to have to get tough with the staff at wenhua I’m afraid.


thanks all for the info so far

both the school and the bureau of consular affairs say i have to leave and get the extendable visa outside taiwan. which i find stupid. plus the chung hwa travel service in HK says they issue “student visas” all the time for taiwan.

Check yourself at the Bureau of Consular Affairs. 60-day non-extendable visas can be changed to extendable ones. You need enrolment and fees paid with your school, a short letter saying why you want to study Chinese, and proof of funds. If someone doesn’t know about it, ask someone else. I know someone who did this in about September last year.

What the HK people are saying, is that they give 60-day extendable visas if you have all the school documents.


I heard about this a lot of times and it always ended with the person having to leave the island in order to get an extendable visitor visa abroad.

That’s because ‘the person’ didn’t do it right.


You can study on a visitor visa. You can even renew that visitor visa twice for a total of 180 days without having to leave the country.

As previous posters have noted, there is no such thing as a “student visa” in Taiwan. Students of Chinese are either on visitor visas or residence visas (which take some hoops to go through, but from developed countries, it generally goes through).

Am going to go in Tainan and want to know about visitor visas . Can i study in the chainese canter there by my visitor visa ? Somebody can help me?

Going to tainan


You need to get a 60 day extendable visa from the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office, Thailand, 20th Floor, Empire Tower, 195 South Sathorn Road Bangkok, Thailand

e-mail: ymtsao@asiaaccess.net.th

Thanks youvery much for your reply me back .I am in tainan already for 5 days and I got tourist visa for 14 days thats terrible so much… then am going to leave on monday soon and i went to cheng kung university and htey said that I have to apply and then they can do my student visa but I have to go in my country that s all and i have non- extenable. I want to know that can i do apply for study chinese in the unversity in non-extenble and and also want to know that how much longer can i get my student visa in my country… ???

Pls help me

A 14-day ‘visa’ is not really a visitors visa. It’s ‘visa-exempt’ which just means that you can stay in Taiwan for 14 days for the purpose of tourism. What you have to do is get all the papers from your university and pay the tuition, then take these papers to your home, or to HK where they can issue you with a 60 day extendable visitors visa for the purposes of study. When you get back to Taiwan, this can be extended up to 6 months as long as you remain a student (you have to go to the foreign affairs police for the extensions).


Ok, so where is that Bureau of Consular Affairs in Taipei? I need to have my visa changed by the end of the month and don’t really wanna get out of the country.

guess I should have looked that up first huh…
the boca is here: Floor 3-5, No. 2-2, Chi-nan Rd., section 1, Taipei, Taiwan
Tel: (02) 2343-2913, 2343-2914 or 2343-2915

Here we go…I’ve been to the BOCA today.

I have talked to a certain Mr. Y. who was very friendly and understanding. He explained their policy to me as the following:

If you have never studied Chinese before and just decided to study because of visa reasons, then you have to get out of the country and apply for an extendable visa there.

In my case, since I have studied Sinology as my minor and have an MA degree, I can just apply for an extention with the local police station. That shouldn’t be a problem otherwise I can get back to Mr. Y. from the BOCA and he will give me one.

Sounds great to me, saves me a lot of trouble…

Man, I came over to Taiwan on a 60-day visitor visa (or “landing” visa) with the intent of “converting” it to a study visa. I thought by obtaining a landing visa in Australia that I would be able to convert it here without having to leave the country. In fact, that’s what the way the lady at the T.E.C. Office in Melbourne the suggested I follow.

Are you positively sure that only applies to those who have studied Chinese previously?

That’s what the guy at the Boca told me. I didn’t go out of the country and had no problems extending my unextendable visitor visa for study reasons last month.