The capital of China is Beijing.
The local time
PRC time zone: GMT +8 (+4 hours to Moscow).
119 – Fire Service;
110 – Police;
120 – Ambulance;
117 – Reference information in English;
121 – Weather information.
The telephone code for Beijing is 10, Guangzhou is 20, and Shanghai is 21.
Yuan is the official currency of China and the only means of payment in the country. You can exchange currency at the Bank of China, in hotels and international airports, as well as in shopping centers. Always keep receipts after the exchange, they will help you if you decide to reverse exchange the remaining yuan after the trip.
JCB, American Express, Visa, Diners Club and Master Card credit cards are accepted at international restaurants, hotels and shopping malls. When paying for purchases with a card, you will be charged an additional commission in the amount of 1-2% of the value of the goods. When cashing out the card in the departments of the Bank of China, the commission fee will be 4%.
As souvenirs, tourists bring chopsticks, cups, porcelain, seals and cases for scrolls, as well as lacquer boxes from China. But often the quality of such souvenirs is doubtful. Suzhou and Hangzhou are famous for their quality silk and tea. See liuxers for China customs and traditions.
Prices in food stalls and government stores are fixed. In the markets, you can bargain even if the product has a price tag.
In Hong Kong, it is better to buy video, audio and photo equipment in large shopping centers, and leather goods (suitcases and bags) in small specialized stores. When buying expensive goods, obtain from the seller a form of a completed permit for exporting them abroad.
Shops in China are open from 9.00 to 19.00, some of them do not close until 22.00. Markets open at 7 in the morning (sometimes at 4) and work until 10-12.
Tipping is not customary in China, but a porter or maid will be happy if you offer 1-2 yuan for their services.
A popular mode of transport in China is rail. Passenger trains are equipped with 4 types of cars: hard seated, soft seated, hard sleeper and soft sleeper. Train tickets are checked three times: at the entrance to the platform, while boarding the train and at the exit from the platform.
If there is no rail connection between cities, then use buses. Travel in them is cheaper, but the comfort of the trip is minimal. The hotels have their own tourist buses, tickets for which are sold in the lobby.
A taxi ride will cost you 1 – 3 RMB. If you decide to use the services of a taxi driver, then keep in mind that for the first 4 km of the trip you will be charged 6-10 RMB, and 1-2 RMB for each subsequent one.
International driving licenses are not valid in China. You can rent a car with a driver ($150).
There are four types of hotels in China:
- Local – service and comfort of rooms are minimal;
- State – distinguished by good service at loyal prices;
- Middle class hotels;
- Foreign hotels – offer high service and the corresponding price level.
The Chinese have a dual pricing policy. For tourists, prices for goods and services are higher than for local residents.
Mains voltage throughout China is 220 V. Universal sockets are installed in hotel rooms. If necessary, you can ask the service personnel for an adapter.
The hotel rooms are equipped with telephones with international direct dialing (IDD). Call charges are included in the total bill for the room. In three-star hotels for a telephone conversation you will be charged an additional 10% service charge, in 4-star and 5-star hotels – 15%.
When applying for a visa, an insurance policy is not required. Before traveling to China, it is better to take medicines with you, as it is easy to get confused among the range of local pharmacies. In them you will find healing herbs, Chinese medicines, and European medicines.