The Chinese embassy in the United States plans to issue more visas as demand, particularly among Chinese overseas and business travellers, rises following the reopening of China’s borders two months ago. The decision was made “to better meet the demand for visa applications in the current situation and further optimise the service”, the embassy said in a statement late on Friday. The number of visa application appointment slots would be expanded and office opening hours would be extended “as necessary”, it said. US citizens with visas – including multiple-year multi-entry visas – issued before March 2020 have not been allowed to enter China as part of the country’s effort to prevent imported infections. That has frustrated many overseas Chinese and frequent business travellers who have not been able to visit relatives or do business in China for nearly three years. The embassy said last month that visas issued before March 2020 could not be used because most of them were for tourists, and long-term visa holders had to apply for a new one if they wished to go to China. On Friday, the embassy said holders of the multiple-year visas could “still travel to China once the visa is reinstated”. But those who “have no urgent or special reasons to travel to China in the near future” should wait to “avoid the current peak of visa applications and schedule application wisely”, the embassy said. Visa issuance has mostly rebounded since China reopened its borders and demand is so high that it usually takes weeks to get a visa . Before the pandemic, the process took days. While China has said it will adjust its visa process depending on the progression of the pandemic and pledged to push for a “gradual normalisation of people-to-people exchanges”, many said that was not enough. “All this is nonsense. Just tell us when the long-term visa will be reinstated,” one Weibo user in the United States commented. “Is it fun to toss people around when you can’t use your valid visa?” another said.