So you’ve been looking for ways to stay in China long-term, and you’ve happened across the D visa. It’s for people who intend to reside permanently in China. Excellent. You can just get that then . . .
Unfortunately, the D visa isn’t that simple. It’s rarely, if ever, granted, and requires approval from a local PSB branch in China. And you won’t get that unless you’re married. Oh wait, the D visa? Married for five years then.
Realistically the D visa isn’t an option. If you are married to a Chinese citizen, the PSB will allow you many many L visa extensions. Otherwise, you’re going to be relying on jobs, schools, and dodgy visa agents. There is, as yet, no equivalent of the ‘retirement visa’ available in some south-east Asian countries which allows a long stay with no connection to the country other than money in the bank.