No matter you are going to travel, study, or just pay a business trip to China, there are 5 things might surprise you. To save the awkwardness, please take a few minutes to read the tips below:
1. Don't be fooled by loud voices
Chinese people like to talk very loudly and passionately at times, don't be surprised if you see people yelling on the phone loudly on the street or old people holding the radios with dance music on speaker mode in a park, even a couple's conversation like "What do you want to eat for dinner?" in a restaurant, it can be easy to mistake this for an argument.
2. Tissue supply
There are two kinds of places in China that don't serve you tissue.
First, public toilet. It is rarely found in public restrooms in China. So don't forget to carry your own supplies. You don't want to ask for help in English but nobody can answer you.
Second, mid-range restaurant. It's very strange that a restaurant doesn't give any tissue, but it happens in China. Not in a cheap restaurant or a fancy restaurant, if you are dinning in a mid-range restaurant (cost around 50-150rmb per person), it usually costs extra 2 yuan to get a small bag of tissue and you have to ask the waiter to bring it to you.
3. Need help? Find a student
The array of Mandarin dialects and variations across China can make communication difficult even for native Mandarin speakers.
But help is always at hand: those under 25 years old are most likely to speak both standard Mandarin and English.
Students who have studied English in books for years, but have had little contact with native English speakers, may understand written questions more readily.
4. Use the best language app for travelers
Pleco is very useful. The basic dictionary app is free. It costs US$14.95 to buy the optical character recognition function, point the iPhone at a Chinese menu and get an instant translation.
Chinlingo app is another good choice to learn some basic vocabulary. It covers most of the conversations you might have with Chinese people, such as ordering food or asking for directions. It's completely free and come with great online service.
5. The great fire wall
As you know, once you get into China, you won't be able to access to most international social networks, such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Of course you can't use Google as well. So, be prepared to lose the contact with friends and families, or you can download a proxy server on your device, so that you can keep contact with them.
The article is translated and editted by Chinlingo. Please indicate the source for any use, reproduction or transfer.