So, I'm off on a great adventure and will be living in China for a few months. I'll have work and a place to live, and I have a few friends there (although not in the same area). I have my visa, passport and a variety of other things prepared (such as medication, extra makeup, my pens, chocolate...). I feel nervous about the whole trip, but I'm really excited as well. I've been practicing my Chinese, although I'm still very shy about it. Has anyone else been to China? How did you settle down? Was the Chinese a barrier for you? Let me know!
Hand sanitizer! You can buy it in China but it's pretty expensive. Possibly cheaper at home :)
Welcome to China. If you are going to Guangzhou, I will be happy to be your guide.
Thanks Baggio, I'll keep that in mind!
I'm heading back to Shanghai in two days' time and would love to help you if you need anything! You can check out my profile for contact info. ;)
I'd say the most important things to have at hand (always), or to get, are:
1. Your ID (passports, visas, that kinda thing) - also make photocopies in case you lose your real one
2. Tissue (Chinese public toilets don't have tissue - make sure to bring them!)
3. Cash (some remote places don't have ATMs - make sure you have enough cash before heading out!)
4. Internet (when getting a mobile phone number, remember to get one with enough data, if not, make sure to buy data packages - ALWAYS have access to the Internet! You have no idea what a lifesaver it can be.)
5. Apply for a Chinese bank account, and apply for the equivalent online banking services. Without online banking, you can't do online shopping, and it can be a huge pain! Online shopping is huge in China, and you WILL benefit from it even as a foreigner.
Apart from that, not speaking Chinese isn't that huge of a barrier. But I'm a native speaker so I might be biased, but I think that people should be able to understand English if you keep it simple.
Good luck and I hope you have a wonderful trip to China!
I'm actually in a 'smaller' city just north of Shanghai, so I'm hoping to travel there from time to time during my holidays. Ye have all seemed to have pleasant experiences, even living in smaller towns, which is a relief to little me :P Any extra ideas on what to bring?