Any foreigner, visiting or living in Shanghai, has to register with the local police within 24 hours. If you are staying at a hotel, they will do this for you when you check in. If you are staying in a service apartment, the reception can usually apply for this permit on your behalf. If you are staying at a hotel or a serviced apartment, you should ask for the Registration Form of Temporary Residence at the time you check in.
When you are renting your own apartment or live in a shared apartment you have to go to the closest police station ( 派出所/ Pinyin: Pai Chu Suo )to apply for a temporary residence permit. Your local agency or landlord will give you the address of the closest police station.
To apply for the temporary residence permit you must bring:
If you have stayed in a hotel for a few days and then move to an apartment, please also bring the local registration form from the hotel. Ask the hotel for 住宿登记表.
Different Police Stations may need different combinations of these documents and how strictly they abide by these requirements may also vary but it is always best to be on the safe side, so if you bring all above documents you should have no problems!
After arriving at the police station you have to draw a number from the self-help queuing marchine, please select Foreigner Household Registration (外国人临时住宿登记 ).
After your number is called, go to the counter hand the documents over and 10 minutes later the police officer will present you with a form to sign and date, return your passport and then give you a copy of your temporary residence permit to keep. The Police officer will keep the copy of the hosuign contract.
Please note that, if your registration has expired because you left the country and then re-entered, you have extended your visa. Also if you are moving to another apartment you have to go to the local police station to renew your temporary residence permit.
If you register yourself too late, maybe the police will charge you fine. Please notice as the regulation, the fine is from minimum 0RMB (warning) up to maximum 2000RMB.
If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact us.