A view of the Las Vegas strip, a frequent destination for Chinese tourist. Photo by Jon Sullivan via Wikimedia
By: John Joseph
Date: February 8th 2015 08:50 AM
Las Vegas is a frequent destination for tourist from China and a new agreement will make it even easier for them to visit and revisit Las Vegas.
In November 2014, the United States and China entered into a reciprocal extension agreement for business and tourist visas for citizens of both countries. The new policy will grant business and travel visas up to 10 years to enter either country. Previously, these same visas would only last up to 1 year.
The move will facilitate more travel between the two countries because it will make travel for occasional and frequent travelers much easy.
For example, a gambler from China who took an annual trip to Las Vegas was previous required to re-apply for a tourist visa each year. Now this same gambler can enter and re-enter up to 10 years on the same visa saving themselves the time and headaches of reapplying for the visas. Since this same tourist can enter again within a 10 year window, it could mean him returning more often than before now that the process is much easier.
In 2014, nearly 2 million visas were processed for Chinese citizens planning to visit the United States. Chinese represent 14% all visa applications worldwide, more than any other country.
What's not changing is visa eligibility criteria, Chinese and other foreign visitors will still be required to meet the same requirements and the visa processing fee remains at $160 USD.
Besides Las Vegas, other destinations set to benifit from the visa change include Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle.