@hawkeye. Not sure what kind of visa you will have, because unless you get a 90 day stay duration, you'll have to factor in some travel costs and time lost in China from leaving and reentering China. But I think your budget has enough funds to cover the costs. Also, it sounds like your research is leisurely, but if it's a bit more intense and requires hiring a car and driver or translator or both, then you'll need to set aside a separate amount for those.
Come on @Alien, you're a smart guy. Most of your posts/replies here are very well thought out, so I'm sure that if you think about it a little, you'll certainly come up with reasonable answers to your question.
Thanks all for the responses and information. @AlexKMG I plan on just getting the basic L category tourist visa that allows up to 90 day stay in china from the time it is issued. My stay is actually about 82 days so a little under 3 months. And my research is a type of post graduate work that is being help funded by an organization called the explorers club, so while it isn't natgeo, I defiantly have to make sure I get my work done. The majority of the research will be done in jinghong and the surrounding area, but I'm hoping it won't take longer than 30 days. I am aware that with that much time being spent there, is going to affect how I figure out the lodging situation. But your right a driver and a translator is something I'm really going to have to look into once I get here.
@stratocaster thanks for gesture but I will be getting here in August. I defiantly hope to go to lijang tho!
@hawkeye. I advise trying to make a point to the consulate during your visa app that you need 90 days for research. If you just ask for a 90 day L without detailing the needs, they could just hand back a 60 day instead.
If you just end up needing to hire help for your research for like a week, I think your budget can handle that, as it doesn't seem you'll be spending too much rmb on drinking and partying.
suggest you find out more before you tell consulate you wanna do research. they may bounce your visa. also some research that involves the people is considered state secrets. if this is for college I suggest you throw some questions out to uni blogs at home first as there might be an easy route, or you may just need to be discreet.
They aren't going to give him a 90 day duration just for sightseeing only. He might not get a 90 day regardless, as it's not common anymore. But the us citizens that do get them, seem to have applied in DC at the embassy and needed to be in china for three months, like on a summer camp or exchange program.
In general, it's not worth it to use the word 'research' unless you really need to, as when that word is heard one often has to jump through various hoops and get permission to do this & that, etc. If you can do what you need to do informally and on your own, I think that's the way to go.
I have never heard of a 90 day tourist visa. If they do exist it would be worth knowing about. I know the old wording was that the 30 day visa was valid for 90 days. That used to cause confusion.
I also believe that 30 day visas used to be able to be extended (in China) by another 30 days.
Is it possible to do 30 days, leave China (Vietnam, Thailand), and then get a new 30 day visa, and repeat?
5000USD would be enough for 3 months I think,good luck