How to Obtain a Visa for Mongolia in China

Bordering China, you would immediately assume that it must be simple to obtain a visa for this incredible country, and I know what you must be thinking, sure visas can be a pain but it’s usually sorted by a trip to your local consulate or embassy and if you’re craving that extra convenience you can just call an agency to handle the whole bureaucracy business for you, but no. It is, in fact actually quite a potentially convoluted process if you are residing outside of the capital, Beijing, the Inner Mongolian capital city of Hohhot, or a border town named Erlian. With that, my post should really be over but again, no. However, there are exceptions to this no I’ve mentioned twice already, and they are the lucky visa exempt countries listed here.

If you are on that list then congratulations, you no longer need to worry about arranging a visa for entry into the wild land of Mongolia. Just purchase those plane or train tickets and start your adventure! For those of you not on the list, congratulations to you also as you get to continue reading this post!

In this post I shall be focusing on two channels for obtaining a visa for Mongolia, one being from the embassy in Beijing and the other being from an agency in Shanghai. I shall also provide contact and address details for the two consulates located in Hohhot and Erlian at the end of this post.

For our first foray into the process that is getting a visa Mongolia, let’s start with the most seemingly straightforward route. That is by going directly to the Mongolian embassy or consulate general. Let’s start with the Mongolian Embassy in Beijing. To get to the embassy using the metro you will need to take line 1 to Yong’anli station and take exit A. Then you will need to turn left, after about 10 minutes of walking, turn right at Xiushui Nanjie and the Mongolian Embassy will be on your left. The visa office has a very small window of operation as is the case with most embassies so be sure to arrive to the embassy with enough time to process your visa.

Necessary Documents for Mongolia Visa Application

  1. Passport with at least 6 months of validity.
  2. One passport photo 3.5cm x 4.5cm.
  3. One copy of the information page in your passport.
  4. One completed visa application form (this is available at the Mongolian Embassy).
  5. Credit/Debit card for payment of visa processing fee. (Unionpay cards are accepted).

Cost and Process of Obtaining a Visa from The Embassy of Mongolia, Beijing

The process of obtaining a visa from the Embassy of Mongolia is extremely straightforward which is great news! As soon as the embassy opens at 9:00 a.m you can get the visa application form and fill it in there and then. It takes less than 10 minutes! Compared to visa application forms from other countries this one doesn’t require a lot of information. If you’d like to see an example of what the form looks like, another great travel blogger posted an image of one here.

After filling in the form hand it into the visa office with all the relevant documentation and it will be processed in 4 or 5 working days. There is also a same-day express service for an extra fee. A 30-day single-entry visa currently costs 405RMB or 60USD. The same-day express visa will set you back 635 RMB or 95USD.

Below is an image with all the details for Embassy of Mongolia in Beijing.

You can’t really see on this image but the Mongolia entry/exit stamps are shaped like little yurts!

Process of Obtaining a Visa for Mongolia in Shanghai Using an Agency

Now that we have seen how to obtain a visa from the embassy in Beijing, let’s now take a look at how you can acquire a visa for Mongolia in Shanghai. There actually was a consulate in Shanghai a few years ago, but it is unfortunately no more. In that case, just what is a Shanghai expat to do? Well, you could take a plane or train journey up to Beijing and make that fateful trip to the embassy or you could take an easier route being no route at all and have an agency handle the whole bureaucratic deal for you.

In Shanghai, travel agencies are a dime a dozen but trying to find one which was able to acquire a visa for Mongolia proved almost impossible. Fortunately we were able to find an agency to help us! The company is called Expats Holidays.

We spoke to a representative on their online chat service who then called us to go through exactly what we needed for our trip. After this initial phone call, we set up a meeting in their office to go through all the necessary details and give the necessary documents to the agents. For this agency we were required to provide:

  1. Passport with at least 6 months validity.
  2. One passport photo 3.5cm x 4.5cm.

The whole process was extremely straight forward and their office is centrally located near Jing’an Temple which made for a nice easy excursion. They were extremely helpful and friendly and gave us all the information we needed to know there and then.

What is the Cost of Such Convenience?

Firstly, we all know that the cost of going through visa agents is not exactly cheap and that may be putting it just a little too lightly. For I must admit my bank account and I may have each shed a tear at the cost of this service. What is the price of such convenience you ask? Well, a single-entry tourist visa will currently set you back a cool 1500 RMB or 222 USD (prices are of course subject to change). 

However, as steep as that may sound it is actually not that bad in relative terms. You see, if you account for what you would have to pay traveling to Beijing and back plus visa costs then it actually works out to be almost the same which eases the burn of the visa cost quite nicely.

The visa process was so simple and handled with great professional care that I would highly recommend using Expats Holidays as a means of obtaining a visa for a truly incredible country. It is a really nice option to have if you don’t have the time to make the trip to the embassy prior to your Mongolia adventure!

That almost concludes this post on how to obtain a visa for Mongolia if you live in China. Just below I shall provide details for the two Mongolia consulates in China, located in Hohhot and Erlian.

I hope this proves to be a useful insight into the visa process and helps get plans underway for an unforgettable trip to the land of Mongolia!

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