Two Chinese travellers were repatriated upon arrival in the United States after immigration officers found they had “uncivilized [behaviour] records,” according to the Chinese-language World Journal.

Both also had their ten-year visas revoked before returning from Los Angeles International Airport to their native Shanghai.

Invalidated ten-year visa
One of the two men’s invalidated visas. Photo: World Journal.

The pair had earned their record during a sightseeing trip to Europe in July, the New York-based newspaper reports.

The first was barred from the US and repatriated on September 16 before the second, a “close friend,” encountered the same situation when flying into LAX on September 18.

“Records of Uncivilised Tourist Behaviour” are managed by the China National Tourism Administration and comprised of information submitted by subordinate divisions or gleamed from news coverage or social media.

Privacy law bars US customs from disclosing details behind the two men’s cases, and both have been unwilling to elaborate on what “uncivilised behaviour” earned them their place on the blacklist. However, acts of a similar magnitude are known to include “damaging cultural relics, gambling, and participating in obscene activities.”

US embassy in Beijing
US embassy in Beijing. photo:

Much-coveted ten-year visas for Chinese and US citizens to visit each other’s countries were first announced in 2014 during President Barack Obama’s trip to China.

A government blacklist barring misbehaving Chinese from international travelling was launched by the country’s tourism authority in 2015 to tackle PRC nationals’ poor image abroad.

Ryan Ho Kilpatrick is an award-winning journalist and scholar from Hong Kong who has reported on the city’s politics, protests, and policing for The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, TIME, The Guardian, The Independent, and others