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Stephanie du Plessis

Travelled to 19 countries / regions

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Visited China recently

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Asia > China > Useful Info
Submitted on Nov 27, 2018 Useful Info

Local customs and etiquettes to be aware of in China

  • Definitely try not to travel during Chinese New Year holiday period.
  • Google/facebook is banned. Get a VPN to use those. Download WeChat, everyone uses it in China.
  • Download a translation app, even if you learn a few phrases of Mandarin, chances are people wont understand you due to Mandarin being a tonal language and really hard to get right.
  • Also download an app that can translate written language like Waygo, it helps you to order from a Chinese menu.
  • Get used to the idea that people will stare, try to sneakily take pictures of you, or even hand you their children and try to take a picture. This is especially true in less touristy areas where people rarely see Westerners.
  • Finding someone who can speak English is not guaranteed.
  • Taking a knife in your luggage on the train is not allowed.
  • Dont buy souvenir cigarette lighters, you cannot take them home on the plane, not even in your checked luggage. They will open your bag and remove it, and replace it with a letter explaining that they removed a dangerous item from your bag.
  • Be careful with bringing multiple heavy-duty powerbanks. If they feel that you have to many powerbanks, camera batteries etc, it can get confiscated at immigration. This rule is a bit vague and we were unable to verify what exactly is allowed but it seemed thay have a problem with high mAh powerbanks. They also required any extra batteries to be isolated in individual ziplock bags when flying.