BEIJING, April 9, (Xinhuanet) -- Shanghai, Hainan and the Pearl River Delta region in Guangdong are partially exempt from a new mainland visa policy for U.S. passport holders, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has confirmed.
American passport holders who stay 48 hours in Shanghai in transit or who take part in Guangdong's six-day "convenient tours" or Hainan's 15-day tours, would not need to arrive with a visa, the South China Morning Post reported Wednesday.
Travelers in transit who remain in mainland airports will also not require a visa.
The retaliatory measures against U.S. travelers were announced last week after the U.S. rejected the mainland's request to review a controversial policy to fingerprint applicants for non-immigrant visas.
Under the policy, China stopped issuing visas on arrival to U.S. citizens and American diplomats traveling in a personal capacity must apply and pay for visas. Some U.S. visa applicants will be interviewed.
However, preserving 48-hour transits through Shanghai had little practical meaning, U.S. executives in the city said. "Most people don't transit through Shanghai," said one.
Shanghai on Sunday denied three American tourists entry because they did not have visas, the Shanghai Youth Daily reported Wednesday. However, the newspaper did not say whether the three planned to stay more than two days.
Earlier, several U.S. citizens were turned away on arrival in Beijing and Xiamen because they did not hold valid visas.
China on Wednesday again urged the United States to lift the "discriminative" fingerprinting requirement on Chinese citizens applying for visas to the United States.