any advices how to avoid cheating taxi drivers if you don't know proper mandarin but need a taxi? lol or any advices in general regarding travelling in/to china
I’d say beware of them hiking up the price before you even get into the taxi. If a driver tells you how much it’s going to cost to get to your destination before you even step into the car, he’s scamming you. They are supposed to use the meter to determine the cost. I read that if you get into a taxi and they don’t use the meter to kindly suggest they do, and if they still don’t then find another taxi. I NEVER had to suggest them using the meter/get out and find another taxi, though (Thank God). Every taxi driver I’ve come across has been nice and always used a meter… besides one. I knew I was being scammed but I really had to get to a meeting and it was the only taxi around so… he scammed me by telling me a flat rate out front which was pretty expensive for the distance traveled. It was honestly the only time it happened and he was still a decent guy- we chit chatted in the taxi. In short some may try to get over on foreigners in this way because they assume you don’t know.
Also there are illegal taxi’s which you can distinguish from the color and I believe license plate. You should look these up. I never was in one, and if I was without me knowing, they did the right thing and played by the books (even though they’re illegal lmao. I’m pretty sure all my taxi’s were legal) so it was all good.
Also for taxi’s it’s recommended to carry small bills. Don’t carry large bills like 100 yuan because those have really good counterfeits. You can look up how to tell a real from a fake, but it’s easiest just to avoid this situation by carrying 1 and 5 yuan bills and stuff. And you don’t have to tip the taxi driver.
Hmm other advice… don’t be shocked or feel nervous/embarrassed if you get stared at lmao. Not trying to sound offensive but Chinese people stare a lot, even at other Chinese people. So a foreigner walking the streets is going to catch their attention. I expected this before going into the country, so what I did was just smile and say hi (in Mandarin). Basically just be nice! Some people say don’t generalize but I’m saying fuck it with political correctness with this next sentence lol. A lot of people will tell you Chinese people are very kind, and from my experience I’ve learned that to be true on numerous occasions. Of course watch your back though, it’s a foreign country and as a foreigner you stand out. I felt very safe in China though- I really, really love it there.
If you want more I can continue. I really love talking about my trip to China and China in general. I’m only stopping now because it’s getting kind of long haha. Are you going soon?! Ahh, gotta tell me what you think!