Seems like yesterday, time goes by so quickly – since its yearly permit, its always around the end of November / early December I am over in the Luo Ho district of Shenzhen, China to renew my work permit and residence visa (2 separate documents required for me to remain in China for another year). Yes, I’m getting married to a local Chinese woman, maybe I can refile as a dependent visa. Some even joke maybe I should try to become a Chinese. But for the most part, this is the closest a foreigner can get to becoming a Chinese – a 1 year work permit. I have heard from some friends over time they have gotten a 2 year extension, but I believe that is a rare case.
During this time each year, i have been bouncing around China, or bouncing around South East Asia. Always wondering what the next year will bring. But the thought process has always been to get this 1 year extension to keep my options open – and allow me to stay in China for 1 year without needing to do an exit/entry (passport stamp) during that time.
This year is going to be adding an new dimension – wife and kids! Keeping an open mind, applying for an extension for another year of my residence permit – and hope they pass me.
I applied today – have to give them my passport (can’t leave China or travel very far inside China for that matter) and it takes 4 to 7 days to get it back.
Typing this up from the stairs on the 2nd floor of the government office, about 20 foreigners in front of me also waiting for the lunch break to finish (lunch is from 12 noon until 2pm)
Keep you posted on the progress, but as demand for foreigners to get Chinese work permits goes up, regulations seem to get tighter.