Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19 Vaccination
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19 Vaccination
As the COVID-19 pandemic rages across the world, vaccines have become a life-saving straw that many people are eager to grasp. But at the moment, the availability is limited and the first batches are earmarked for those in the most urgent need, such as medical staff and senior citizens.
In China, one of the leading countries in COVID-19 vaccine development, the government has been arranging vaccination for priority groups such as frontline health workers, inspection and quarantine officers at ports of entry, and personnel bound overseas for work.
However, a considerable number of Chinese living overseas have recently returned to China in order to get vaccinated.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19 Vaccination

The journey costs a lot of money and time but many believe it’s worth it, people familiar with the situation said.

The fact that some Chinese are flying back home for vaccination despite having alternative choices in the US or Europe also reflects the Chinese people’s growing confidence in domestically produced vaccines, experts on vaccines said.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19 Vaccination
“Sharing the experience of going back to China to get the coronavirus vaccine on social media accounts has become one of the most popular forms of bragging,” Catherine Zhu (pseudonym), a naturalized Swiss citizen living in Zurich who is originally from China said.
Zhu spent nearly 70,000 yuan ($10,710) to get a one-way ticket back to China from Switzerland in late October, completing coronavirus nucleic acid and antibody tests with negative results within 48 hours before boarding, facing the possible risk of infection on the plane, and finally going through 14 days of quarantine.
After getting the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine made by China’s Sinovac Biotech, Zhu said she thought all the tedious procedures of returning home were worthwhile.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19 Vaccination
After getting the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine made by China’s Sinovac Biotech, Zhu said she thought all the tedious procedures of returning home were worthwhile.
Vaccination
“I decided to go back to China to get vaccinated at the first chance I had,” she added, revealing her enthusiasm to return after seeing reports that COVID-19 vaccines produced by Chinese enterprises had passed biosafety inspection and proven to be effective, with minor side effects.
According to Zhu, there are currently many channels for overseas Chinese coming to China to make an appointment for vaccination, including booking appointments through local federations of returned overseas Chinese, community management departments and companies.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19
Zhu said she felt very lucky that she had no adverse reactions from the vaccine. In China, she was free to visit relatives and friends without any restrictions or pressures, and even went to the 3rd China International Import Expo (CIIE).
Zhu has returned to Switzerland where travelers from China are able to pass through customs quickly and return home without having to undergo quarantine and nucleic acid tests.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19
“For me, getting the vaccine is like wearing an armor. Although I will continue to wear a mask, wash my hands frequently and practice social distancing in the face of the severe epidemic situation in Europe, I know that there is a force from my motherland protecting me, which makes me feel extremely relieved,” Zhu said
China has begun the vaccination for urgent use and will gradually open it to the public. For overseas Chinese, there have been favorable policies.
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19
Xu Xiaolin, head of the Qingtian clansman association in Italy, said on Sunday that for overseas Chinese, vaccine is the solution for the pandemic, which has attracted Qingtian people living in Italy to take a round-trip to China for vaccination, especially those doing business. “As far as I know, several hundreds of Qingtian people in Italy have flown back for vaccination,” said Xu.
The trip is not cheap. According to Xu, a one-way flight ticket is about $2,500, and the quarantine cost for a fortnight is at least $700. “The vaccines are not expensive though, only 400 yuan for two doses.”
Chinese Living Overseas Flock Back Home for COVID-19
But the time consumed in the process is more notable. “For some people, it takes three or four months to complete the whole process,” Xu said.
It is recommended that the first injection and the second injection be separated by 28 days. If you are in a rush to go abroad, the interval can be shortened to 14 days, an official responsible for overseas Chinese affairs at the Epidemic Prevention and Control Headquarters of Qingtian said.


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