Google, Dropbox, and Facebook are blocked (though not illegal) in China. It is recommended that you install a VPN or save relevant files locally on your system if you need access during your stay in China.
Navigational signs are written in English as well as Chinese, and enough people here can speak English that it won’t be too difficult for to get around in Shanghai on public transportation. However, most cab drivers do not speak English, so plan accordingly. You may wish to install Google Translate or Pleco on your phone; the former may require a VPN on your phone if you do not have an international data plan with your provider.
Shanghai's taxis are easy to flag down in low traffic hours, but rush hours in popular locations can prove frustrating, and you may prefer the metro. Most cab drivers do not speak English, so if you do not speak Chinese, it is recommended that you have your destination written in characters.
The taxi companies listed below are most strongly recommended.
|Main Taxi Company||For Booking||For Complaint||Taxi Color|
|Dazhong||(+86 21)96822||(+86 21)6258 0780||Sky blue|
|Qiangsheng/Bashi||(+86 21)62580000||(+86 21)6258 1234||Orange|
|Haibo||(+86 21)96933||(+86 21)6213 0011||Sapphire blue|
|Jinjiang||(+86 21)96961||(+86 21)6416 9292||White|
The most cost efficient way to get around in Shanghai. A short trip is 3 RMB, and a long one is 6 RMB. Xhuhui campus is very close to two subway stations: the Jiaotong University station on lines 10 & 11 and the Xujiahui station on lines 1, 9, & 11. The Shanghai Metro map is available here. You may also wish to install Explore Shanghai on your phone. One-way tickets can be purchased in the metro stations; the ticket kiosks can be set to English by a button in the upper-right corner of the screen.
Bullet trains run between major Chinese cities. With top speeds over 300 km per hour, they can be faster than travel by plane if the destination is less than 1,500 KM away, so we highly recommend you choose the bullet train if you want to visit a city not too far from Shanghai and there is a connecting rail line.
|Shanghai Railway Administration ticket office||9510 5105|
|Enquiries to Shanghai Railway Station, Shanghai South Railway Station, or Hongqiao Railway Station||(+86)-21-6317-9090 (+86)-21-5436-9511 (+86)-21-5124-5555|
|Baggage service for Shanghai Railway Station or Shanghai South Railway Station||(+86)-21-6317-4168|
Public Services Contacts
Though Shanghai is a safe city, you may occasionally need help from local services.
|Police - 110||Fire - 119||Ambulance - 120|
The official currency in China is the ren min bi (RMB), also called "yuan" or "kuai". For current conversion rates, check online at http://www.xe.net/ucc/convert.cgi or http://www.oanda.com/converter/classic. Estimated exchange rates are: 1 USD = 6.8 RMB and 1 EUR = 7.4 RMB.
Coins are issued in denominations of 1 jiao (0.1 RMB), 5 jiao, and 1 RMB. Currency notes are available in 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 RMB. Foreign currencies can be changed at banks and airports with your passport as ID.
Credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, etc.) can be used at most hotels. Some major restaurants and shops may accept those cards, but they will not be usable most other places. Some credit cards can be used at Bank of China ATMs.
The standard time in China is Beijing Time, which is 8 hours ahead of GMT (GMT +8).
Shanghai usually has a short spring and autumn and a long winter and summer. In the summer and fall, the weather is usually warm and humid. September marks the start of autumn, but weather remains warm and potentially rainy. The average daily high and low temperatures are 27 °C (81 °F) and 22 °C (72 °F), respectively.
Plugs and Electricity
There are two official standards for plugs and sockets in the People's Republic of China. The first is the grounded three-blade CPCS-CCC, which is practically interchangeable with the type of socket found in Australia. The second is a non-grounded two-blade plug, very much like a two-blade North American/Japanese plug. Electrical outlets in the People's Republic of China usually supply electricity between 220 and 240 volts AC. Check your electronics to determine what, if any, adapters you will need. For further information about outlets and power, please consult with the hotel receptionist.