The U.S. State Department recently reduced nonemergency consular operations at various consular posts in China, citing “operational impacts caused by the surge of COVID-19 infections” across the country.

Key Points:

  • The U.S. Consulates General in Guangzhou, Shenyang and Wuhan will only be providing emergency consular services until further notice.
  • Beginning Dec. 19, the Guangzhou Immigrant Visa until will be closed for regular visa services until further notice due to limited resources.
  • The U.S. Embassy in Beijing and the U.S. Consulate General in Shanghai are only providing passport and emergency citizen services at this time.
  • All routine visa services, with the exception of some previously scheduled at the Consulate General in Shanghai, are temporarily suspended; all regularly scheduled appointments at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing and the other Consulates General have been canceled.
  • Nonimmigrant visa applicants can reschedule their appointment for a later date by following the instructions on this website. Immigrant visa applicants should use this website for more information.
  • U.S. citizens are encouraged to register in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program to receive updates regarding the current COVID-19 situation in China. More information can also be found here.

Additional Information: Chinese authorities continue to update COVID-19 prevention and health control measures as the outbreak spreads. These measures may include residential quarantines, mass testing, closures, transportation disruptions, lockdowns and possible family separation. Individuals with questions regarding other parts of China should contact the Embassy or Consulate General of the district to which they are traveling.

BAL Analysis: U.S. citizens should expect possible delays at U.S. posts in China at this time. Companies with employees in China are encouraged to follow State Department information and warnings closely. U.S.-based employers and employees should continue to consult their BAL professional before planning international travel.

This alert has been provided by BAL U.S. Practice Group. For additional information, please contact

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