Muggings. Over friendly locals
We read before we traveled to China to be aware over over friendly people trying to be helpful and give you directions etc. Day one we almost got caught. We had obviously just arrived in Beijing and stood out as targets. We were sat on a wall eating and a young girl started chatting to us, very friendly. We have a few hours to kill and she offered to walk with us to the river. On the way we were in a quite street when a policeman on his motorbike tried to stop us but we didn't know what for so carried on. After the girls attitude changed and got nasty when we wouldn't go the way she wanted. She kept making phone calls and asked us to wait on a corner while she went in a shop. Once she entered the shop we left. During our holiday we met a few Brits that had similar situations and ended up being taken to a minder and getting mugged. Its a sad world if you are afraid to interact with the locals but we only had one incident and everyone else we met were great.Related to:
- Budget Travel
Tea: don't go with anyone ever it's a scam YOUR IT
Your invited to tea and the bill will be yours to pay at enormous expense.
The normal way with men at least is for a pretty girl trying to get you talking. you shall be invited to tea. The bill will cost you £$£$£$£$ don't speak to them walk on or use German or French but still walk on. YOUR THE MARK !!!
Don't BUY Chinese medicine it too is a scam medicine shall cost to loads.
Don't fall for it !!!!!!!!!!!!
You will be taken to talk to doctors who shall recommend drugs for you
do not buy them say No
Get up and walk out.Related to:
- Business Travel
Crooks at Tiananmen Square, Beijing!
If you meet in a center of Beijing nice young Chinese people speaking good English and inviting you for tea or something - be careful, don't accept the invitation! They may take you to the tearoom, you will have your time drinking and talking with them and in the end you will receive a high bill to pay (100-200 USD!). You won't have a chance to prove your right. Those people cooperate with the restaurant staff.
In some hostels you will find a warning against this danger.
Be careful when crossing the street! Unlike many Western nations, where the pedestrians' right of way in crosswalks is generally respected, that is NOT the case in China. Cars and other motorized vehicles are king in CHinese crosswalks. You are supposed to cross at the crosswalks, but only do so when the road is clear and you are not going to get run over. DO NOT assume that a CHinese driver will automatically let you cross in front of them - it may be your last decision.
When crossing the street in China, watch how the locals do it and follow their lead. Go to the crosswalk, look both ways (scooters sometimes travel in the wrong direction on streets), step out into the street when it is clear, and walk at a steady pace (so you don't confuse approaching drivers). Many times you will need to stop in the center of the street to let cars pass before continuing to the other side.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Budget Travel
- Family Travel
BEWARE OF PICKPOCKETS AND THEIVES
China with its vastly numerous population is such a wonderful place to visit but is not without its everyday dangers. Unfortuneatly The tourist or travellers really "stick out" in the crowd here making them a popular target for theives and pickpockets. Although I heard of people being "ripped off", I had no such problem while travelling anywhere in China.
This is mainly down to common sense and ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings..
Usually people are targetted in crowds ..well this is the place for crowds..always be very carefull when in close contact in crowds!!
Don't keep all your money in one place...have a seperate stash somewhere on your body.
People that are ripped off" are usually concentrating on something else when it happens..
Keep your bag in front of you ..and around your neck...not ,over your shoulder..
Always be careful in crowded railway stations, bus stations, and especially market places.
REMEMBER THESE THEIVES ARE GOOD AT WHAT THEY DO!!!..THEY DO IT FOR A LIVING.Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Budget Travel
The number one complaint among Chinese city dwellers is the traffic congestion that plague the streets of China's cities.
Because of the economic boom fueled by increased foreign investment, privately owned cars are becoming more accessible to the local people. Just a few years ago, most Chinese got around the cities by bicycle. Nowadays, bicycles are becoming increasingly rare as people are buying more cars. Car ownership has increased 67 percent in the last few years, and China is now the world's third-largest consumer of private automobiles. As a result, traffic jams are unfortunately becoming the norm in the large cities.
In some of the larger urban areas, such as Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou, traffic jams can last for hours, and in some instances have even lasted all day. The average rush-hour speed in China's cities is only three miles (five kilometers) per hour. Factors contributing to such severe traffic problems include poor driving skills among car owners, no enforcement of the traffic laws, bad road design, and almost constant road construction and repairs taking place in the cities.
The government is engaged in a feverish road-building scheme, constructing new roads and highways in an attempt to alleviate the country's traffic problems. However, the new construction cannot keep up with the increase in the number of cars on the roads.
Traffic accidents in China occur at a significantly higher rate than in most countries of the world. It has been estimated that there are about 250,000 traffic-related deaths per year in the country. Pedestrians should be especially cautious when crossing a street, as they do not have the right-of-way as they do in most Western countries. Drivers tend to be aggressive and almost never yield to people in the street. Many of the Chinese cities are therefore constructing pedestrian walkways above some of the busiest streets.
ALWAYS TRAVEL HERE WITH TRAVEL INSURANCE
.Travelling here in this huge amazing country is of course not without its dangers. Always when travelling especially in Asia make sure that you have the neccesary Travel insurance for your needs. We all like to do different things when travelling and some can be dangerous. Hospital stays are extremely expensive along with doctors or surgeons costs . This misfortune can devistate your best laid plans and leave you destitute. This really was bought to my attention recently in my Asian travels as I saw travellers having numerous motor cycle accidents with really bad consequenses. When preparing for your travel journey, check out the different travel Insurance schemes and pick the one that you feel suits you best , and importantly where you are going.!!
I always make sure that my travel Insurance covers accident, medical and hospital costs, theft, and the most important ,repatriation in case of the worst scenario, that we avoid thinking about. Of course the more cover you get the more it will cost ALSO where you are going will also add to the cost if it is a "known" dangerous area. Travel with peace of mind is important..
as the say: DONT LEAVE HOME WITHOUT ITRelated to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Budget Travel
ALWAYS CARRY YOUR OWN FRESH BOTTLED WATER
When travelling in this part of the world and especially here in China I always carry my own fresh bottled water. This can be purchased best and cheapest at supermarkets. I usually buy 2 bottles for every day that I am staying and/or when I am leaving I stock up and as I always (when possible) travel by train. The hotel /hostel where you are staying will usually have a refrigerator that you can put your bottles in .This way everyday before going "out and about" you will have a cold bottle to take with you..Remember when out and about and bottled water is purchased at street traders or small shops make sure to check the "seal " on the cap of the bottle to see that it is NOT broken as you may have a "refill" from local tap water. This is a common scam..Related to:
- Hiking and Walking
- Road Trip
Credit Cards and Exchange Fees
When charging items to your credit cards, particularly larger items such as hotels or air/train tickets, try your best to kindly remind the vendor to have all major expenses in China charged to local (RMB) currency.
Some more reputable establishments will ask for your preference while most will not. Many will use their “internal” exchange rates at substantially lower exchanges than the official ones IF you remain silent. The difference could be substantial (~5%).
YOU ARE GOING TO HAVE TO BUY A VISA !
The Chinese are amazingly equitable. Essentially they want virtually everyone in the world to buy a visa if you want to come here. The only passport holders in the world who get in for free – for 15 days – are lucky people form Singapore, Brunei and Japan. The other 5 Billion of you must pay.
Oddly I found it easy to get one. They just want the money that’s all.
Acommon1 SAFE JOURNEY ANYWHERE
Common sense Acommon Travel rules as to where ever you go.
#1. Don't go where you shouldn't go.
#2. Follow the rule of law in the country that you reside.
#3. Adhere to the rule of law from your home country.
#4. Respect and "pre-" read up on the culture(s).
#5. Gain some familiarity with the country's national language prior to your trip.
#6. Practice the local language with the locals.
#7. If concerned with lodging then don't do what isn't familiar to you.
#8. Eat what has been cooked.
#9. Drink bottled water that has a seal. Open it yourself.
#10. Know your coordinates (esp. North & South). Memorize the major cross-roads prior to taking your trip.
#11. Have a copy or two of your Passport in a safe place (either on you personally or in an emergency place).
#12. Go electronic (with back up paperwork) when you can.
#13. Be reluctant to share your full plans with strangers.
#14. Be flexible.
#15. How you handle "it" determines whether it'll be a good event or day or not. Understand that something weird, funny, or bad might occur.
#16. Watch your travel companions as they might just as well cause trouble by accident / unknowingly or on purpose.
#17. International travel is not a time for pranks. (Stay away from pranksters that want to travel with you)
#18. Just try to remember that "nothing" is for "free". (This goes for women too! Crazy partying guys should know this.)
#19. Silently meditate as to rehearse (or re-play) plans.
#20. Always be prepared for a back-up exit plan (... where ever you are (and check for exits)).
#21. Travel with flex travel time on the front end but esp. back end of your visit. This'll reduce your frustrations if there happen to be delays.
#22. Pack light while being wise.
#23. Be nimble. (physically)
#24. If you have good judgment with befriending people (anywhere) then be social with out giving away too much information.
#25. Know your money. Where it is. How much is on you. Denominations in order. Minimize coins if possible (don't need to be heard walking around jiggling).
#26. When driving a rental car ... pay the extra for full coverage. (Take it from a guy that has had 2 separate flat tires and locked up engine all in the same trip. Can you guess where?)
#27. Walk like you know where you are going even when you get lost. The best way to not get lost again is to remember where you were when you were lost.
#28. You are not a "stick" in the mud if you choose to stay away from the "loud" crowd.
#29. Avoid traveling during the host country's elections.
#30. Be aware of political and labor union protest. Don't accidently get caught up.
#31. Never walk away from your open beverages and/or food. Once you've stepped away then pass on further consumption as to be cautious.
#32. Ladies and guys, know that you will meet lots of wonderful people plus some not so. Don't be fooled by "beauty" or a "handsome" face. Danger lurks. If you have a bad judgment of character domestically then it is not going to get any better outside of the country.
#33. If you're not considered "HOT" back home then don't be fooled when you are abroad. Money matters. It isn't really your looks.
#34. The money train gets you access but it can also generate trouble.
#35. Make certain Taxis / Limos drivers happen to be locked into the price and directions prior to departure.
#36. Know the weather conditions prior and during your trip.
#37. Read the local newspapers / journals prior to arrival. (seek to understand cultural, social, economic, etc topics of the day)Related to:
- Historical Travel
- Business Travel
- Luxury Travel
this is a sad fact of china. millions of country people flock to the big cities each year in the hope of making some money. unfortuneatly some don't make a cent, so in order to survive
crime is an option. just be wary when in a crowd...be aware if you get country people or children milling around you...remember you are a soft target. make sure all bags are closed and secured. ask any chinese about pick pockets....most have a story to tell.
i watched in amazment when in shanghai last time at the top of nanjing lu near the bund, when waiting for a friend i witness a few guys (i think they were from one of the stahns or western china) milling around eyeing off targets. two broke from the pack and followed two women with hand bags. 1 guy dropped back from the other and started trying to slide his hand into one of the womens hand bag. i yelled out from across the street. this only stopped him momentarily, he went in again for a second try. no fear! you have to be street wise!
Queue / Line Jumping
Be prepared for queue / line jumping when in China. Some people will push to get a head of you or just go around any queue. Even standing in an aircraft aisle, some local people will push to pass you when no one is moving. People sometimes put their arms with money over your shoulder to pay admission.
Often people get on the metro and elevators/lifts before letting people out. However, this seems to be getting less on my later visits to China. It still happens but maybe I'm getting use to it and also try to stop people for doing this when I can.
I understand the government had spots on TV to educate people not to do this before the Olympics so China would have a better image to the world. They even had bus stop monitors to train people how to queue up.
Please rate this and my other tips when you find them interesting, useful or you like the pictures.
China is as safe as any country is. Pickpockets and scam artists are all around the globe , no matter where you go. SO when in China use your common sense. Ive worked in China on and off for 3-4 years and never had a problem. Toilets , yep theyre a little different and well sometimes a little dirty/smelly but hey thats the way it is. Do carry tissue as none provided. Water , yep the tap waters not the best but ive drank it and been fine. Mind you i prefer to drink the bottled stuff. Its cheap and clean. Hawkers , well they can be a bit of a nightmare. Always barter and dont be shy. You should get the item for at least a tenth of what its being offered for. The "artists" and "girls" that want to practice English. A trick as old as the hills. If you fall for that one there may be no helping you , BUT if someone tries to steer you toward a bar/tea house to sit and talk just say , COME WITH ME I KNOW A PLACE.. If theyre scamming they wont be happy for THEM TO HAVE TO ACCOMPANY YOU and the ruse is up... Counterfiet money.. Its a hard one as HOW DO YOU KNOW but try to carry a wad of smaller denomination notes so you can pay close to the correct amount thus taking away the opportunity of receiving a wad of duds in your change as once you have it YOU WONT BE PASSING IT ON. Crossing the street.. Look both ways CONTINUOUSLY.. They are mad drivers...LOL..A lot / most dont speak English so learn a few words before you go and collect business/hotel cards so you can always return from whence you came..
The food is fantastic. Ive had a couple of cases of belly issues but that goes with the territory of trying out the weird and the wonderful culinary delights. Street food can be particulary dodgy but also tasty and cheap. If there are locals buying then its probably ok for you to buy and try.
Other than that have a good time. Most Chinese are friendly and accomodating people.
You gotta say its a different place and wouldnt the world be boring if it was all the same!!
The air pollution in and around the Chinese cities is the worst I have ever seen. The air pollution is so bad that when I entered Guangzhou, I was not able to see the buildings clearly until I was very close to them.
Recent studies have shown that China is the world's number one emitter of carbon dioxide. In addition, only one percent of China's 560,000,000 city dwellers breathe air that is deemed safe to breathe, and 16 out of the world's 20 most polluted cities are in China. The air pollution is worse in and around the country's mega-cities (cities with at least 10,000,000 inhabitants) and industrial centers.
Much of the reason for China's poor air quality is the country's reliance on cheap coal that is high in sulfur content, which increases the sulfur dioxide levels in the atmosphere. About 70 percent of China's energy and industrial needs are met by the use of this cheap coal. Another recent contributor to China's pollution problem is the sharp increase in automobile ownership and use, which increases the levels of nitrogen oxides and ozone concentrations in the air.
It has been found that 200,000 to 600,000 people die each year due to respiratory and heart disease cause by air pollution. And in the last 30 years, the incidence of pulmonary tuberculosis has doubled due to urban smog caused mainly by automobile emissions.
Big room, overlooking a "well" at back of hotel, but quiet. Only hotel in China where we didn't get...more
Having lived in Beijing for a number of years, I had stayed in relatively few hotels in the city -...more
The Hotel is truely a mixture of ancient and modern decore built in a Gothic Style, it once was...more
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