Travel to China: What to Pack
Is this your first time to China and are you wondering what to pack? Whether you are going for business or pleasure read on.......
The Long Plane Ride:
Chances are you are going to be on a long plane ride. Traveling from the U.S., your destination in China will be 24 to 30 hours door to door(from the door of your home to the door of your hotel room). Many travellers can't sleep, making he time really drag.
Believe it or not, a sizable number of business travellers wear business attire on this long, arduous flight. Aside from limited room in your suitcase, this makes little sense. The logic behind wearing the suit in flight is less room in your suitcase.Your suit will go straight to the expensive dry cleaners at the hotel. And, often the cleaning process is harsher on clothes than elsewhere.Relax, be comfortable. Wear casual attire on the flight. After all with a little luck, you will be sleeping in these clothes and with a little bad luck spilling some of your meal or drink in the cramped quarters of the plane.
I suffer most from sheer boredom on the overseas leg of the flight. Go armed with variety of things to do in your seat. Bring along those magazines that are building up. Take two books. The long flight, many hours to kill in the airports, and little to watch on the television, will make anyone an avid reader.
I like to bring along a personal cassette recorder. Music on the flight channels is too limited. I will also listen to the music in the hotel. CD's can be too awkward. Because I tend to lose the cassettes, I will tape some of my favorite CD's or tape current songs from the radio. Then, when I lose the cassettes, it is no big deal.
If you suffer from boredom, here are some other ideas:
As a general rule, dress as you would in your job back home. Salesmen and Bankers will wear suits. A molding manager or engineer will be casual and tie-less. Temper this with the much more casual atmosphere in many areas in China. Unless you are working with a potential customer, engaged in contract negotiations, or working with government officials, dress casual.
In many areas of the country, you will experience a far more rugged existence. Dust and dirt will be common. As a result, a casual dress atmosphere is very appropriate. You should also consider leaving the most expensive suits home unless appearance is a key issue.
Tourist Attire: This is easy.....Wear whatever you normally wear on vacation. As with business travel, you may want to leave some of your best outfits home, especially if you are not going to impress anyone.
Gym Apparel: If you are staying at a major hotel, there will be a gym. Attire is mixed like anywhere else. Some wear ragged shorts, others sport expansive gym suits and spandex. Be yourself!
A final thought: Even in summer, you rarely see the locals wearing shorts, especially males. If this is going to bother you, bring just one pair at most.
Your medicinal needs are pretty important in a country where your brands do not exist. When a headache occurs, you may not even know where a store is that carries it. The hotel will have a very limited supply of items, probably not your brands. Go through a Medical Checklist to assure you have everything you need.
Do your wear glasses or contacts? Bring an extra pair along in case you were to lose or damage one of them. Don't forget the saline solution(although in major cities, saline solution can be found).
You are probably already versed in travel and know many of the basics to bring. Should you want a general checklist, see China Traveler's Checklist
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