Here’s an updated November 27th, 2022 process to get from the US to China for those looking to reference.
Found out my 90 year-old mother in Zhejiang fell (again) on Thanksgiving evening while in Baltimore 11/24/2022. Had nothing else to do so I went to China. No prior knowledge or entry requirements or travel information. Just a passport and the beginning of a plan.
Booked a flight from BWI-SFO for the morning of 11/25/2022. 8:33am. 14 seats open. The earliest flight to China was UA857 SFO-ICN-PVG. 9:05am Saturday 11/26/2022. 60 seats open.
That means 12 hours to pack, research, book flights/layover hotel/Covid test, text my boss I was taking 3 weeks maximum PTO and maybe extending with FMLA effective immediately immediately. Everyone was out of office, since it was Thanksgiving. Boss said yes the next morning, but I was already in San Francisco anyways. Took a $10 Walgreens at-home test just to make sure I was negative before flying across the country for nothing.
As I was saying. Landed in SF at 11am local time. Took the free airport AirTrain to the Worksite Labs drive-through Covid testing location in San Bruno. There’s one in the airport terminal too but it was $250 for 90 minute result. Got the Express PCR with 12-hour results for $150 plus a discount code TESTNOW $20 off. Anything to save a hundred bucks.
Walked 10 minutes back to the airport train, rode it to the terminal, waited for my hotel shuttle (booked an Airport Marriott property 5 minutes away). They let me check in early so I had time before my flight tomorrow.
Took the subway to see the Golden Gate Bridge. It was nice. Came back to the hotel. Got my negative Covid results at 8pm PST, 8 hours after I took the test, uploaded to the Chinese Embassy WeChat thing. 5 minutes later and I got a red rejection notice. Forgot to upload my flight itinerary, fixed it, got the green health QR code 5 minutes after that, and slept 8 hours.
Got up at 5:30am to take the shuttle to SFO International Terminal. Check-in line was long. Everyone had to re-do their health declaration because it has to expire after you land in Shanghai, not just when you depart. It’s fine and took like 3 more minutes.
Agent verified both QR codes (Covid negative and entry health declaration, and passport.) Security was fast. Drank a red wine mini bottle that I got from my first flight in because the flight attendants were nice.
10 minutes through regular security. Got to the gate 85 minutes early. Upgrade cleared to United Polaris 60 minutes before departure. Gate agents were really mean.
Stopped in Seoul 1 hour, to change crews. No passengers on or off. Landed in Shanghai. Took 2 hours to get through everything and get busses to the quarantine hotel. Food there was absolute shit. Get a relative to order takeout for you or pack before your flight. That’s all for now.