Foreign travel advice


Natural disasters


China is located in an active seismic zone and can experience major earthquakes. 

An earthquake of magnitude 6.5 struck parts of Sichuan Province on 8 August 2017. The deadliest earthquake of recent times was the 7.9 magnitude earthquake on 12 May 2008, which also struck Sichuan province. It is estimated that more than 69,000 people lost their lives.

To learn more about what to do before, during and after an earthquake, see the  US Federal Emergency Management Agency website

Latest tsunami warnings can be found on the Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre website


Flooding is common during the wet season (May to November). In June 2015, flooding and storms affected the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Hubei, Hunan, Sichuan, Guizhou, and Chongqing leading to a number of fatalities and injuries. Shanghai was also flooded, with some roads said to have been under 30 cm of water on 17 June 2015 after heavy rainfall.

Monitor local weather reports and follow any evacuation orders.


The typhoon season in China normally runs from May to November, affecting in particular the southern and eastern coastal regions of China. You should monitor the progress of approaching storms on the Japan Meteorological Agency and the China Meteorological Administration websites.

Avoid visiting isolated or rural areas if a typhoon system is forecast. There are sometimes large-scale evacuations, particularly in the coastal regions of southern China. You should follow the advice of the local authorities. Air travel and other forms of transport can be affected. Check with your airline or travel operator for further details and try to keep in touch with family and friends.

See the FCO’s Tropical Cyclones page for advice about what to do if you are caught up in a typhoon.