10 Tips For Easier Travel In China
Exploring China can be daunting even for the most seasoned of travellers. It’s a massive country with a myriad of different languages and dialects and travelling around can be a little scary, so here are some tips to make your visit much easier.
- Get extra beds.
Rather than booking two rooms for a family, book a twin room and ask for extra beds if needed. Most Chinese hotels are more than happy to accommodate extra bodies, especially if it’s children.
- Take note of currency.
Don’t insult a taxi driver with small bills. They prefer coins, contrary to western culture.
- Download a language app.
One of the best tips we can give you if you intend to travel via the Trans-Siberian express is to download a language app. Then all you have to do is point your phone at Chinese writing, like a menu, for an instant translation. You only need a basic, free app to get by.
- Get off the beaten path.
Use tour guides who take you to little-known areas and learn much more about the beautiful country. It’s the perfect way to explore different parts of the country.
- Order rice properly.
Believe it or not, rice is not often served in Chinese restaurants and is rather considered a cheap way to fill up at the end of a meal, if necessary. If you want rice with your meal, be clear about it with your waiter by saying “mifanmashang” (rice straight away).
- There’s something you need to know about toilet paper.
You won’t often find toilet paper in public toilets in China, so remember to carry your own.
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- It’s perfectly safe.
China is not as terrifying as some guidebooks say. Traffic is manic, yes, and the air could be a lot better, but this is one of the safest countries in our world.
- Ditch difficult breakfasts.
Outside of the bigger cities and hotel chains, the regular Chinese hotel breakfasts actually cater for the local market. It’s not a problem if you love pickles and congee but can be a hurdle for picky eaters and children, so bring a box of their favourite cereal and milk, most hotels don’t mind at all.
- Trespass confidently.
International travellers are accustomed to the concept of private property, which means you might stay away from hutongs and worn footpaths for worry of intrusion. That’s not at all how the Chinese see things. All outdoor areas are considered public spaces and alleys and lanes are where you’ll find some of the most captivating scenes within the bigger cities.
- Get used to loud voices.
Chinese people like to have very loud conversations, and they can get very passionate about things, which can make it easy to mistake their chat for an argument. So, don’t be too concerned if you come across what may seem like heated blows, it could just be a passionate conversation!
Use these 10 tips to make your visit to China easier and more comfortable and you’re sure to have a really enjoyable time.