This is a top answer to this question on Quora which I think is pretty comprehensive and objective.
But some of them need a further discussion.
1.WeChat is everything, basically functions as FB and Instagram and Apple Pay/Credit Card/Cash/Money.
2.Use DiDi Chuxing, don’t even try to call a cab.
3.You can get amazing and cheap stuff from Taobao.
(There are chances you get crap from Taobao, so be smart when you purchase.)
4.Labor is still relatively cheap, so you can get really good and cheap haircuts.
(It’s true but choose your barbershop wisely, otherwise you might end up like this.)
5.Air pollution is bad but life still goes on.
6.There’s lots of good food.
7.Some people can be rude but there are just as many nice people.
(Actually this situation exists everywhere….most people are kind)
8.Cities like Shanghai never sleep.
(We call it “夜上海” and “魔都”.)
9.It’s safer than most countries in Europe and America.
(It’s true but I wouldn’t take the chance if I were you, cautiousness is required.)
10.High speed trains are almost always on time down to the second.
11.The sun comes up pretty early (in Shanghai and in the east).
12.Most people live in high rises.
(Cities are literally full, we have no choice.)
13.Real estate prices are really high these days.
14.There are a lot of electric scooters.
(E bike is core of food delivery service in China.)
15.Every city has a ton of museums worth going to since China had such a long and rich history.
16.In some parts of Shanghai it doesn’t even feel like you’re in China because there are so many foreign stores and expats.
17.You need to be really good at driving to drive in China.
(Traffic condition will be terrible in rush hour.)
18.Kids rarely come out to play because they study hard.
(That depends, there are a lot of kids can balance studying and entertainment)
19.Even if you understand Mandarin, it can be hard to understand people if you’re not native
since there are so many dialects. The Mandarin you learn in classes will be best for going to
Beijing and places up north. Shanghainese and Cantonese are a totally different family of
languages in the Sinitic branch of the Sino-Tibetan language family (Thank you Kevin Zhang for clarifying).
20.It’s hard to come up with 20 things because each place in China is so different.
Source: https://www.quora.com/profile/Sara-Ying from Quora