Things to Know Before Traveling to Beijing

Not having to tip is very very nice

Thank you seems to be said less

Strangers stare at you

Strangers ask to take pictures of you (mostly at tourist attractions)

Traffic laws are pretty loosely followed

Bikers do whatever they want

Cashiers don’t like giving change, they will, but they might ask for change

Sometimes you have to pay for a plastic bag in grocery stores

Taxi drivers never speak english

Sometimes they test your water on subways to insure that is actually water

People will not give up seats on a subway even if they’re a healthy young adult and there is a pregnant person

People run for seats on the subway

The next train is just as crowded as the one that just passed

People will definitely push you to get on/off the subway

Passports are used for ID’s as a foreigner a lot

The worst crime seems to be pickpocketing (but I haven’t heard of any stories of this happening)

People will practically run after you to hand you a pamphlet

Google Maps give you the street signs in English, but the signs aren’t always this way (especially numbers, learn numbers)

Know the address of something near your apartment, in case your taxi driver doesn’t recognize the address of your apartment

Eating with chopsticks is so much more work

Bring toilet paper/napkins of some kind to public restrooms

A lot of people wear shirts with english words (these people don’t always know english)

Badly translated signs are great

The sushi from connivence stores is pretty good

Get some people to translate or you’re gonna have really limited food options

Taxi drivers will sometimes try to overcharge you before you get in, find another taxi

If taking this thing (when there is no other option), discuss the price before

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Uber is definitely a good idea, aside from them often calling and asking where you are in Chinese

Subway station exits make good meeting places

Life is hard without google maps to guide you

Things that you would see in the US are more expensive

Bless you isn’t said

WeChat is used for everything

Pringles barely have flavor

Beer costs less than water (sometimes)

Pork buns are really good and sold in connivence stores

Water is usually served warm in restaurants

Subways are very very crowded during rush hour

Baidu’s search engine kinda works, but not well (apparently it works better in Chinese)

People use their phones for everything

Everything is a lot cheaper

I am a graphic design major who is interning abroad in Beijing, China. I will be working with top designers at E-Go. I’m looking forward to emerging myself into an exciting new culture.

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