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China Travel Information

Visa Information

In order to enter China, you will need a valid visa. You cannot get a visa on arrival. We recommend you get your visa in advance in good time. When you book your holiday with Dragon Travel, we will send a booking pack containing full visa application details and application forms.

If you are travelling to Tibet, we will apply for your Tibet permit from our office in China.

Airport Departure Taxes

Airport departure tax (service charge) is now included in your air ticket. It is no longer necessary to pay it in cash at the airport.

Money Matters

The currency in China is called the 'Yuan' or 'Renminbi'.
At the time of writing £1 = 10 Yuan approx.
US$1 = 6.8 Yuan approx.

Mobile Telephones.

If your mobile phone is enabled for roaming, you will find it works in the most parts of China except perhaps remote country areas.

Health.

We strongly recommend you take medical advice from your doctor before visiting any part of Asia. He or she will be be able to advise you on the latest health-related recommendations and preventive measures. Water is drinkable in major hotels, but we recommend you stick to bottled water which is available everywhere.

Sensible Precautions.

Visitors to China rarely experience crime or other difficulties but please remember that there are bad people everywhere and, particularly in the main cities, petty crime e.g. theft can be a problem. Please take sensible precautions. Please do not carry passports, important papers or a lot of money when walking in the street: make use of hotel safes where available. Ostentatious jewellery or watches are a temptation. Keep a close eye on cameras and bags.

Weather.

North
Winters in the north fall between December and March and are very cold. Beijing's temperature does not rise above freezing, although it will generally be dry and sunny. North of the Great Wall, into Inner Mongolia or Heilongjiang, it is much colder with temperatures dropping well below freezing. Summer in the north is around May to August. Beijing temperatures can occasionally rise to 100 degrees Fahrenheit or more. July and August are also the rainy months in the city. In both the north and south, most of the rainfall is in summer. Spring and autumn are the best times for visiting the north. Daytime temperatures are 70 - 85 degrees Fahrenheit and there is less rain. Although it can be quite hot during the day, nights can be cool.

Central
In the Yangtze River Valley area -including Shanghai- summers are long, hot and humid. Wuhan, Chongqing and Nanjing have been dubbed ‘the three furnaces’ by the Chinese. There may be very high temperatures any time between April and October. Winters are short and cold, with temperatures dipping well below freezing - almost as cold as Beijing. It can also be wet and miserable at any time other than summer. While it is impossible to pinpoint an ideal time to visit, spring and autumn are probably best.

South
South - In the far south, around Guangzhou, the hot, humid periods last from around April through September, and temperatures can rise to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. This is also the rainy season. Typhoons are liable to hit the southeast coast between July and September. There is a short winter from January to March, nowhere near as cold as in the north, but bring warm clothes anyway. Autumn and spring can be good times to visit, with daytime temperatures between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. However, it can be miserably wet and cold, with perpetual rain or drizzle, so be prepared.

Northwest
Try to avoid China's northwest at the height of summer. In the winter, this region is as formidably cold as the rest of northern China. In Urumqi the average temperature in January is around minus 50 degrees Fahrenheit, with minimums down to almost minus 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Spring and Autumn are the ideal times to visit.

North Central - Beijing, Xian
Some snow and rain during the winter. Late winter and early spring bring regular dust storms and haze.

South Central - Shanghai, Guangzhou
Summer is hot and humid with frequent rain. Winter is shorter, cooler and often overcast with drizzle.