• July 22, 2023
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Planning to Visit China

You Are Planning to Visit China: Here’s What You Need to Know in 2023 Some tips to help – Visa…

 Planning to Visit China

You Are Planning to Visit China: Here’s What You Need to Know in 2023

Some tips to help – Visa and passport, Health and safety, Culture and etiquette. Some basic etiquette – Greet people with a handshake, accept invitations to meals, Dress modestly etc.

China is one of the most popular destinations for tourists and business travelers alike. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, China had closed its borders to foreign visitors for three years. Now, China has fully reopened its borders and resumed issuing all types of visas, including tourist visas. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers to help you plan your trip to China in 2023.

China is a vast and diverse country that offers a rich cultural heritage, stunning natural scenery and a variety of experiences for travelers. Whether you are interested in exploring the ancient history of Beijing, the modern metropolis of Shanghai, the scenic beauty of Guilin or the ethnic diversity of Yunnan, China has something for everyone. However, traveling to China also requires some preparation and awareness of the local customs, laws and regulations.

You Are Planning to Visit China: Here's What You Need to Know in 2023

Here are some tips to help you plan your trip and make the most of your time in China.

Visa and passport: You will need a valid passport and a visa to enter China. You can apply for a visa at the Chinese embassy or consulate in your country or through a travel agency. The visa process may take several weeks, so plan ahead and check the latest requirements before you travel. You may also need to register with the local police station within 24 hours of your arrival, depending on where you stay. Your hotel or host can help you with this.

Health and safety: China is generally a safe country to visit, but you should take some precautions to avoid health problems or accidents. Make sure you have travel insurance that covers medical expenses and emergency evacuation. Consult your doctor before you travel and get vaccinated for common diseases such as hepatitis A, typhoid and rabies. Avoid drinking tap water and eating raw or uncooked food. Bring your own medication and prescription, as well as a first-aid kit. Be careful when crossing the street, as traffic can be chaotic and drivers may not follow the rules. Avoid political demonstrations or sensitive topics, as they may cause trouble with the authorities.

Culture and etiquette: China has a rich and diverse culture that reflects its long history and regional differences. You should respect the local traditions and customs and avoid offending or embarrassing anyone.

Here are some basic etiquette tips to follow if you are planning to visit China:

– Greet people with a handshake or a nod and address them by their title and surname. Avoid using first names unless invited to do so.

– Accept invitations to meals or tea, as they are a sign of hospitality and friendship. Try to taste everything that is offered to you, but do not finish your plate, as it may imply that you are still hungry. Use chopsticks or a spoon to eat and do not stick them upright in your rice bowl, as it is considered rude.

– Give and receive gifts with both hands and do not open them in front of the giver. Avoid giving gifts that are considered unlucky, such as clocks, knives or anything in white or black.

– Dress modestly and appropriately for the occasion. Avoid wearing shorts, skirts or low-cut tops in religious sites or formal settings. Wear comfortable shoes that are easy to take off, as you may need to remove them when entering temples or homes.

– Do not point with your finger or feet, as it is considered rude. Do not touch anyone’s head, as it is considered sacred. Do not show public displays of affection, such as kissing or hugging.

– Be patient and flexible when dealing with delays, misunderstandings or inconveniences. Do not lose your temper or raise your voice, as it is considered disrespectful and may worsen the situation.

– Money and communication: The currency of China is the renminbi (RMB), also known as the yuan (CNY). You can exchange foreign currency at banks, hotels or authorized exchange offices. You can also withdraw cash from ATMs with international cards, but be aware of the fees and limits. Credit cards are widely accepted in major cities, but less so in rural areas. Always carry some cash with you for emergencies or small purchases.

You can communicate with people in China using Mandarin Chinese, the official language of the country. However, there are many dialects and regional variations that may make it difficult to understand each other. You can also use English in tourist areas or with educated people, but do not assume that everyone speaks it. It is advisable to learn some basic phrases in Chinese before you travel, such as greetings, numbers, directions and common questions. You can also use a translation app or a guidebook to help you communicate.

You can use your mobile phone in China if it is compatible with the local network and unlocked. However, you may need to buy a local SIM card or use a VPN service to access some websites or apps that are blocked by the government, such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp etc.

– Transportation and accommodation: China has a well-developed transportation system that includes trains, buses, taxis, subways, bicycles.

 

FAQ

Q: Do I need a visa to enter China?

A: It depends on your nationality and purpose of visit. If you have a valid Chinese visa (any type) issued before or after March 28, 2020, you can use it to enter China without applying for a new one. If you don’t have a Chinese visa or your visa has expired, you need to apply for a new one at a Chinese embassy or consulate in your country. You can also apply for a tourist visa in Hong Kong if you are visiting the Chinese mainland from there.

Q: Are there any visa-free policies for China?

A: Yes, China has reinstated some of its visa-free policies for certain countries and regions. For example, if you are from one of the 53 countries that qualify for the 144-hour visa-free transit policy, you can visit China for up to six days without a visa if you have a confirmed onward ticket to a third country or region. You can also enjoy visa-free entry to Hainan Island, Shanghai International Cruise Terminal, Guangdong Province (for tourist groups from Hong Kong, Macau and ASEAN countries) and Guilin City (for tourist groups from ASEAN countries). However, if you are from Singapore, Japan or Brunei, you still need to apply for a visa before entering China according to the bilateral agreements.

Q: Do I need a COVID-19 test to enter China?

A: No, you don’t need a PCR test or a proof of vaccination to enter China. From April 29th, all international travelers can use an antigen self-test instead of a PCR test to enter China. You can buy the self-test kit at the airport or online and perform the test yourself before boarding. Airlines won’t check your test results when boarding.

Q: Do I need to quarantine when I arrive in China?

A: No, you don’t need to quarantine when you arrive in China. China has lifted its quarantine requirement for inbound travelers since January 8th, 2023. You can travel freely within China after passing the health screening at the airport.

Q: Can I visit Tibet?

A: Yes, you can visit Tibet. Tibet has officially reopened to foreign travelers since March 15th, 2023. You need to apply for a Tibet permit through a licensed travel agency before entering Tibet. You also need to join a guided tour with a local guide and driver in Tibet.

Q: What are the best times to travel to China?

A: The best times to travel to China are spring (March-May) and autumn (September-November) when the weather is mild and pleasant. The peak seasons are during the Chinese New Year (usually in late January or early February) and the National Day holiday (October 1st-7th) when many Chinese people travel domestically and internationally. If you want to avoid the crowds and enjoy lower prices, you can travel during the off-seasons such as winter (December-February) or summer (June-August).

 

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