Destination: China

Useful Things to Know Before Going to China

Destination: China

Useful Things to Know Before Going to China

What can I expect from China?

China has 22 unique provinces. With so much to see and do in this vast country, it can often get overwhelming to plan a trip – especially for first-time travelers. The following China travel guide will help you plan your trip and have the time of your life.

Things to See and Do in China

  • See the Forbidden City
  • Climb the Great Wall of China
  • Try Peking Duck
  • Hike Zhangjiajie - The Avatar Mountains
  • See the Terracotta Warriors
  • Eat local Hot Pot
  • Do a Cruise on the Yangtze River
  • Explore the Rice Terraces

Typical Costs When Traveling

Accommodation – With China’s rapidly growing tourism industry, there is accommodation for all budgets available. My favorite place to stay when visiting Beijing is the stunning Rosewood Beijing, a luxury hotel in Chaoyang District.

Food – Because China’s enormous size, the food is different in every corner of the country – but Chinese chefs have identified eight culinary traditions as the best:

  • Shandong Cuisine: fresh and salty with a lot of seafood dishes.
  • Sichuan and Hunan cuisines: hot spice.
  • Guangdong (Cantonese), Zhejiang, Jiangsu cuisines: great seafood, and generally sweet and light flavors.
  • Anhui and Fujian cuisines: inclusion of wild foods from their mountains.

Transportation – Most cities in China has a subway system. Traveling between cities is easily done by bullet train or cheap domestic flights.

Suggested daily budget

30-50 EUR / 33-56 USD

(Note: This is a suggested budget assuming you’re staying in a hostel, eating out a little, cooking most of your meals, and using local transportation.

Using the budget tips below, you can always lower this number. However, if you stay in fancier accommodation or eat out more often, expect this to be higher!)

Money Saving Tips

  • Eat at local restaurants. Foreign restaurants are usually more expensive compared to local food. Plus, you get to experience authentic Chinese food!
  • Use Public Transportation. Unfortunately, many taxi driver try to take advantage of tourists - especially if you don't speak Chinese. Using public transportation like buses, trains and the subway is a lot cheaper!
  • Pre-book your tickets. Many attractions charge more when you buy admission tickets at the entrance. If you pre-book your tickets, using Klook for example, you'll save some serious coin!
  • Use student discounts. If you're a student, you will be able to get a lot of discounts in China. Simply bring your student ID card and present it at a ticket booth.

Recommended Travel Guides for China

If you want to learn more about China and have a handy travel guide in your pocket, check out these three options below:

Lonely Planet China

You really can't go wrong with a lonely planet guide in your hand luggage! I'm a huge fan of Lonely Planet and own this guide myself. What I love is the brand-new pull-out, passport-size 'Just Landed' card with wi-fi, ATM and transport info - all you need for a smooth journey from airport to hotel! Plus, all businesses were rechecked before publication to ensure they are still open after 2020’s COVID-19 outbreak. Buy this book.

Fodor's Essential China

This beautiful guide is packed with customizable itineraries with top recommendations, detailed maps of China, and exclusive tips from locals! The itineraries laid out in this guide are perfect for various trip lengths and help you maximize your time. Overall a great guide with amazing photos! Buy this book.

Insight Guides City Guide Beijing

If you're looking for a comprehensive guide just about Beijing, this is a great option! Get the best history and culture insight with this guide, detailing insider information on top attractions like The Forbidden City, Beihai Park and the Great Wall, and cultural gems like Wangfujing Night Market, 798 Art District and the Back Lakes area. It also comes with a free ebook! Buy this book.

Want to learn Chinese before your trip?

Learning Chinese before your trip can greatly enhance your travel experience.

Picture this: seamless communication with the locals, eliminating those awkward language barriers and making you feel like a pro traveler.

Understanding those fascinating Chinese characters will unlock a whole new level of cultural appreciation, giving you a deeper connection to the rich history and traditions of China.

With some Chinese skills under your belt, you'll be able to understand important safety instructions and handle emergency situations with confidence.

Speaking Chinese opens doors to genuine connections with locals, who will be thrilled to share insider tips and introduce you to hidden gems that most tourists miss out on.

Join more than 2 million people from all over the world and learn a new language at your own pace! Learn Chinese now at Rocket Languages!


Are you looking to stay in China a bit longer? Do you have a passion for teaching and exploring new cultures? Then teaching English in China might just be the perfect opportunity for you!

With a booming economy and a growing demand for English language skills, China is an exciting destination for those looking to teach abroad. Not only will you have the chance to immerse yourself in a rich and diverse culture, but you'll also gain valuable teaching experience and make a positive impact on the lives of your students.

The first step in finding a teaching job in China is getting TEFL/TESOL certified. There are many course options available, allowing you to either get certified online or in-class.

Teaching English in Asia allowed me to experience these fascinating cultures from a local perspective - and it's pretty good money, too!

I recommend getting a TEFL/TESOL certificate from ITTT, for the following reasons:

  1. Established Provider: ITTT has been offering high-quality TEFL training courses since 1998, making it a well-established provider.
  2. No Requirements: ITTT courses are open to all fluent English speakers, regardless of nationality or previous teaching experience.
  3. Transparent Pricing: There are no hidden costs with ITTT courses, as the course fee covers all necessary materials and certification.
  4. Support and Assistance: ITTT provides round-the-clock customer care and lifetime job assistance to course graduates, as well as access to teaching materials and lesson plans.
  5. Additional Resources: ITTT offers a range of additional resources to support its graduates, including teaching videos, a popular online blog, and partnerships with leading recruitment companies in the EFL industry.

Get a 20% discount when signing up via my link!


I’m always surprised how many people travel without travel insurance. For me, it’s as essential to travel as buying a plane ticket, backpack or accommodation, and I never go without it.

Although China is relatively safe, unexpected natural disasters can always happen and I’ve witnessed people getting laptops and phones pickpocketed first hand.

Adequate insurance not only provides you with medical coverage (if you get sick or break your leg), but also covers things like your camera full of epic shots getting damaged or stolen, your flights getting cancelled, or you getting caught up in a natural disaster.

In short, it’s an insurance against potential issues that arise when you’re traveling and can save your life (or at the very least, a lifetime of debt).

BOOK | I recommend booking World Nomads travel insurance

World Nomads provides travel insurance for travelers in over 100 countries. As an affiliate, we receive a fee when you get a quote from World Nomads using this link. We do not represent World Nomads. This is information only and not a recommendation to buy travel insurance.


China is one of my favorite travel destinations and I’d recommend anyone interested in Asia and history to visit. The Great Wall of China and the Forbidden City are among some of the most impressive historic attractions around the world and should be on anyone’s bucket list.

The following blog posts will help you plan your trip to China. Whether you are looking to travel around China independently or want to join a guided tour, you’ll find what you need in these related articles: