Breaking Down the Visa Process

Whether you have just accepted your Disney English job offer or you are in the early stages of research, the lingering thought of visas and paperwork can be intimidating. But don’t worry! We’re here to help.

Below is a guide to each document you’ll need to work in China – from your Z visa to your passport to your TEFL Certificate.

Z Visa: Why do I need one?
A visa is an official document that allows the bearer to legally enter a foreign country and is usually stamped or glued into the bearer’s passport. In order to work for Disney English in any of our learning centers across China, you will need a Z visa. A Z visa, also known as a China work visa, is issued to those who have obtained an employment permit and intend to work in China.

We know how hard it can be to understand the process of obtaining a Z visa; regulations can change or documents may need to be re-issued due to a small discrepancy, which is why we have a relocation team that is dedicated to guiding our new Foreign Trainers throughout the process. We also partner with companies who specialize in some aspects of the process to assist along the way. Although it is the responsibility for all of our Foreign Trainers to obtain a Z visa on their own, we make sure you have everything you need to do so.

A passport
You can’t obtain a Z visa without a passport! Your passport is needed before you apply for a role, and it needs to be up to date. Proof of a valid passport is required in the very early stages of the documentation process. Make sure to order your passport or renew it if necessary. Your passport will need to be valid for at least one year from the time your contract starts.

There are additional documents that are a must for all the cities where Disney English operates:

Your original degree
Chinese officials need you to provide an original diploma from your college or university. Transcripts won’t cut it. The original degree is needed by Immigration, and it has to go through a legalization process first. Many people who are worried about their degree getting marked-up will order a copy from their university. But be sure to do this early on because it may take a while to receive a physical diploma.

Police Clearance Certificate
Along with providing Disney English information for a background check for your employment, education, and criminal histories, you will also need a Police Clearance Certificate for immigration to China. This is a special type of criminal check that requires fingerprinting. No need to worry about where to go and what to ask for; we will give you guidance for your area.

TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certificate
You will need to complete a 120-hour TEFL course to obtain a work permit to teach English as a second language in China. Due to the wide range of courses available, we select a course for all of our Foreign Trainers to take. This course is made available just after an offer is accepted and is completed online at the trainer’s own pace.

Pre-arrival medical check
You will need to complete a medical check prior to coming to China. There is a special form that we will provide you with for your doctor to fill out. This will cover the basics for Immigration. You will also have a follow-up medical check upon arrival.

That’s it!
Once all of the documents are gathered together on our side, we can apply for a document called a Notification Letter (NL). This is the letter needed to apply for your Z visa. Once the NL is issued, you can apply for your visa and are one step closer to arriving in China.

Be aware, sometimes the documents needed may change or different cities may require more information. Your relocation expert is there to help you with all that you need to ensure that you are set up for success the moment you accept your Disney English job offer. We hope to see ya real soon!