China is indeed a big, beautiful and historic city. Going to this wonderful place might be part of your bucket lists.. So, here are some of my travel tips for you.
Some Tips for Surviving China
- If you have limited time for your trip, make sure to go to the tourist trails before going to any other places
- I have a list of Recommended places to visit in Beijing: Click here
- I also have a list of recommended places to visit in Xian: Click here
2.When you visit China, make sure to wear comfortable clothing
- unlike South Korea or Paris, people here doesn’t mind about what you wear… Chinese seems to believe in Simplicity… and they choose comfort than glamour.. so don’t mind wearing any glamorous clothing while you are in China. T-shirt, pants, or short-pants will do
- But make sure to wear according to the season. If it’s winter then bring some winter clothing. If summer, then wear summer clothing
3. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes
- In a big country, such as China, it isn’t a shocker, when parks, palaces and other tourist attractions is 4 times bigger than a soccer field. So better yet get ready and wear comfortable shoes
- I wore my trusted fitflops when traveling here in China, and it wasn’t a problem. Which is unlike Bangkok, where you can’t go inside if you’re wearing slippers.
4. When you go to tourist attractions... DON’T ever try to talk to vendors!
- There are a lot of vendors selling you stuff in tourists attractions, and they will just pester you and ruin your day if you try to talk to them.
- Our tour guide told us some horror stories when you try to buy to these vendors:
- According to our tour guide, Selena of Sinohotelguide, she said that one of the tourists bought something from a vendor in the great wall of Badaling, and the tourist got a fake note (money RMB) as a change.
- Another client of hers, also asked the vendor how much the price of the souvenir was, but the client just wanted to ask (since a buyer has the right to ask questions right?) unfortunately, she was forced to buy the thing because the vendor followed her and keep pestering her to buy the item
>> Moreover, we saw the real deal when we came to Ming Tombs, a foreign woman asked the fruit vendors (just outside the Ming Tombs) how much was the apples…and she touched it, and then she went away, and then the vendor tried to follow the foreigner and as the vendor moved, the apples that she was selling fell to the ground (the basket “bilao” of apples seemed to be accidentally attached to the apron of the vendor, that was why the apples suddenly fell), then suddenly she was throwing the apples to the foreign woman.. —this time we are just about to buy some fruits because my dad was so hungry! and we are like her next customer (we are at least 1 meter when it happened) and after seeing that kind of disaster, my father said “Halika na!” which means “Let’s go”…. harhar.. such a scary encounter!!!
5. If you travel DIY, you should put the attractions, places you wanna visit and your hotel in their local language
- Traveling to China is difficult because of the language barrier… even in train stations or ticketing counters and even the policeman doesn’t know how to speak English… so foreign visitors… it will be really hard for us!
- However, If you are well-versed with their local language (Mandarin) then you will have no problem at all, but for a lot of people who doesn’t understand this language then you should get ready.
- Start by putting the name of the attractions and hotels in Chinese.
- You can let the front desk staff of your hotel to write the places you wanna visit in their local language
- Or before coming here, learn some basic Chinese! 🙂
6. Exchange your money in their currency before its too late!
- There are no Money Exchange shops in China, you can only find one in the airport and some reputable hotels (Hilton, Novotel) and of course the trusted Bank
- I tried exchanging my money in the reputable hotels (My family and I are really worried) but they didn’t allow because only hotel guests can avail of the service)
- For those who are budget-travelers, and your hotel doesn’t have a money exchange counter, then your only option is the BANK. But take note that the opening hours is by 9am to 5 pm and they are closed during Chinese Holidays, Saturday and Sunday.
- But, no worries for ATM card holders, if your bank is loaded with cash 🙂 then you can just withdraw from ATMs in China. However, they have limit of 2,000 to 3,000 CNY per day. We tried withdrawing in the ATMs of different banks in China, but it doesn’t work, the maximum (to all banks in China) is the limit I mentioned before.
- Moreover most of the establishment does not accept USD! So be careful people! 🙂
7. When you go to China, especially DIY or even if you have a tour guide, you should read some basic history of the places you wanna visit, so that you can understand thoroughly the underlying mystery that covers the place. This will make it more interesting! 🙂
8. Bring water with you…
- walking…walking…walking.. is the only thing you will do when you visit an attraction in China, and you will need a lot of water to re-energize and to refresh you…and also this is to avoid the pesky vendors in the attractions… Instead of buying to them.. just bring your own. It will make you safe and refreshed throughout the trip.
9. If you are going to ride the long-distance train, I suggest you buy the ticket earlier or reserve it online (Now, they have online reservation facility) or if not, go early to the train station and buy the tickets) especially if your train is Xian to Beijing, since sometimes they have only 1 train leaving the place. So, watch out people!
TIPS FROM FELLOW BLOGGERS:
1. When you come to China, as much as possible, avoid street foods-especially those cooked in oil. One of my fellow blogger stated that Chinese tend to cook their food in recycled oil.
> Food cooked in oil is very unhealthy—not only because it was cooked in oil— but because the oil is recycled by those vendors.. And we all know recycling oil and eating the food cooked in it is carcinogenic…
FOR THE READERS: If you already traveled to China, please put your other “tips and suggestions when traveling to China” on the comment box below.. I can add it here in this list..
If you have more tips, list it down in the comment box below and I will add it here 🙂
Thank You! Hope this helps! 🙂
HAPPY WANDERING! 🙂