In a move aimed at boosting business and tourism, visitors from 51 countries have been entitled to spend six days in the Yangtze Delta without first obtaining a visa if they are in transit to other countries.
The government introduced the new 144-hour transit policy on January 30 for international travelers arriving in Shanghai, Nanjing and Hangzhou, the Ministry of Public Security said.
According to the ministry, foreigners availing themselves of the scheme can enter Shanghai (at any port), Nanjing (Lukou International Airport) and Hangzhou (Xiaoshan International Airport) without a visa. They can also leave China from any of these ports.
The ministry said the three cities implemented a 72-hour visa-free transit policy in 2013, but the period has now been extended so that foreigners arriving in the Yangtze River Delta have more time to do business and sightseeing.
Foreign travelers could previously enter only through airports, but now they will be able to come by ship and rail as well.
No longer restricted to one city on arrival, visitors will be free to travel all over the Yangtze River Delta.
The new policy applies to visitors from countries including: South Korea, Japan, Singapore, the United States, Russia, Britain, and Australia.