Travel mistakes are easy to make, even for the most seasoned of travelers, when visiting China. Whether it’s a mistake made during your actual journey or mistakes made during the planning stage, they can prevent you from enjoying your trip to the fullest extent. Here are 4 common travel mistakes to avoid when visiting China.
Not Preparing Your Phone Before You Travel
It’s likely that your phone is one of your essential daily items, but it may not work as simply as you’d expect when you land in China. Before you set off, decide whether you are planning to use your own phone whilst there or whether you prefer to rent a phone instead. If using your own phone, be sure to check your provider’s international plan before you go. Alternatively, if you plan on buying a Chinese SIM card when you arrive, ensure that your phone is unlocked from your usual phone network at home before you go.
Another important aspect to consider is that internet access in China is restricted and censored. As such, apps like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Netflix and Gmail won’t work. If you want to continue having access to these apps whilst in China, you need to make sure that you set up a VPN before you arrive.
“A VPN is essentially software that will allow you to circumvent sites which are usually unavailable in China. Although it can seem complicated, once installed, a VPN is actually quite simple to use. Better yet, a VPN isn’t too pricey, costing around only $15 a month, which is worth the investment, especially if you’re visiting China for a lengthy amount of time,” says Ruth Underwood, a lifestyle blogger at OX Essays and Essay Roo.
Failing To Plan Ahead
It’s worthwhile spending some time planning your trip to ensure that you can do all the things you wish whilst there. Guide and travel books can be very helpful and many are now available as eBooks. Plan your time wisely, whilst avoiding trying to do too much in one day.
Similarly, if you can avoid travelling in July and August, even better. Chinese schools also close for the summer months, meaning that travel can be more costly and tourist attractions can get much busier. It can also get very hot during the day. Instead, try to plan your visit for earlier in the year, such as during June, when it’s likely to be cooler and quieter.
Not Exploring Different Methods Of Travel
With so much to cover and so many different areas to visit, you’ll want to make the most of your time in China. For this reason, many people choose to fly. However, this can actually end up being more expensive. Instead, as part of your planning, research travelling to your chosen destinations using buses or trains. Not only will this save you money, but it will also allow you to see some more of the countryside. Another great idea is to book an overnight train, as it will also mean you can save money on a hotel.
Not Protecting Yourself Against Theft
Scams and theft exist in China, just as they do anywhere else. The busier the location, the more likely it is you can fall victim to it, especially pickpockets.
“There are some simple steps you can take to help protect yourself against theft,” says Philip Lin, a content writer at State of writing and Paper fellows. “Firstly, make sure that you avoid carrying large amounts of money with you when you go out and carry only a copy of your passport. Store the rest of your cash and your actual passport in the hotel safe instead. Also make use of front pockets, where it’s harder for a pickpocket to steal, and wear your backpack on your front, especially in crowded areas including the subway.”
Spend time planning your trip to China to ensure that you can get the most out of your time there. Explore different ways of travelling to widen your experience and save money. It’s also important to ensure that you have adequate travel insurance to cover your entire trip. Once there, the only thing left to do is to enjoy your trip!