Can Two Foreigners Get Married In China?

Now Shenzhen   |   May 19, 2023

·About The Author·

  • Author of Chinese Law Books: Intellectual Property, Commercial, Company and Economic Law In A Minute
  • Author of English Law Book Business Law In A Minute
  • Co-Author of Peking University Textbook: Business Ethics
  • Graduated from Fudan University Law School
  • Interviewed by Bloomberg and Timeout
  • Mentor at Bloom Education (Charity)

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Video 15

This is the 3rd video of the Falling In Love With China Chapter.


To watch the video, click the image above.

Our topic today is on whether or not two foreigners can get legally married in China. The quick answer is no. In this video we shall discuss why this is a common misconception, how you can get married to a Chinese person and easy solutions to this issue.

Before 2019, it was possible for two foreigners to get married in China. Therefore, a lot of foreigners who got married back then tell their buddies that it is possible using themselves as an example. The law got changed 4 years ago, and the Ministry of Civil Affairs no longer accepts such marriages.


To watch the video, click the image above.

However, it is still possible for a foreigner to marry a Chinese person right now. All you have to do is to go to the Marriage Registry at where your wife’s hukou is based. Hukou roughly translates to household registration. Generally speaking you will need to bring your passport, a certificate of single status that is notarized by the Chinese embassy in your country, and 3 2-inch photos, but you should check with your spouse’s local registry to confirm if there are any additional things that you need to bring with you.


If you are both foreigners, the easiest way to get married is to get that done in Hong Kong. Hong Kong is right next to Shenzhen, and HK laws allow for both foreigners to get married. If you hold a EU passport, you can enter Hong Kong visa free, so it is really the simplest way to get married since there is no more quarantine nowadays for entering or leaving Hong Kong. It is also very easy to get a tourist visa to Hong Kong especially if you already hold a valid residence permit in China. A trip to and back from Hong Kong would take 28 days for double quarantine in COVID era but thankfully those days are over now.