Top 5 apprehensions and their possible solutions for first time travellers to ChinaSmriti Saxena
People hardly think of China as a destination for a vacation. Most of us have some fears when it comes to travelling to China. Here are 5 common problems and their possible solutions to provide you some relief
- Problem: I don’t speak Chinese and people there don’t speak English. What to do?
- Solution: We have heard time and again that language is an issue, and Chinese who know English still don’t prefer to help you. They are rude. Actually, this is not a 100% true. China is like any other country and so are its people. If they understand you, they will help you. If the challenge is ‘How will you make them understand?”, then please download biadu (China’s google) or take a small handbook. You are stuck somewhere, you have nothing that could help you and you don’t who and how to ask, then look out for university students or smartly dressed executives, they usually know English.
- Problem: Chinese goods are cheap and they don’t last long. So should I still buy Chinese goods?
- Solution: When in China, definitely buy Chinese goods. Mind you they are not always cheap, good quality ones are usually higher priced. Having said that, Chinese goods are still available at a decent price. Though one thing to remember : DON’T, I meant DO NOT even step into a mall. Just visit Flea markets, there are shops like Mini So etc. they have good deals and good products.
- Problem: What will I eat? They only serve non – vegetarian food and that too I can’t trust.
- Solution: Partially correct, that you cannot be experimental in China no matter if you think you are non-vegetarian of highest order. There’s a combination that you can safely try: Have caramelized corn in barbeque spices (veg), fruit sticks (veg), pork Shaomai (dimsum), cong you bing (fried spring onion pancakes), tofu and then you have McDonalds and KFCs , and Pizza Hut that serve both vegetarian and non – veg food. Infact, there are some Indian restaurants also where you can visit.
- Problem: I am budget traveller and I always use public transport. Can I do the same in China?
- Solution: It is quite simple and easy. You just need someone who can do a route map. Your best bet could be the hotel staff. They usually know English and are happy to help you. On the way, just keep asking people and you will know. Usually inside the travel cars they play announcements in English as well.
- Problem: Should I carry more USD or Yuan?
- Solution: ‘USD works everywhere may not be true’. Not necessarily in China though. Only official currency i.e. Yuan, also known as RMB as ‘quai is acceptable. Denominations are available in 1RMB, 10RMB, 20RMB, 50RMB, and 100RMB.
- Problem: How much should I tip in a restaurant?
- Solution: No. Don’t tip in China, locals don’t do it and you are not expected to tip as well. Infact, in Chinese restaurants hospitality is not so courteous unless you are visiting a luxury hotel. So as it you won’t feel like doing so.