China is a beautiful and majestic land. It is home to the Great Wall of China, the giant panda and the Forbidden Kingdom. From the country’s beautiful and majestic landscape to its vibrant culture, China is like no other country.

In the busy cities, from dusk till dawn commuters populate the dusty streets. On a daily basis, people squeeze their way to get by. Travel a few hours outside of the cities, and you will be greeted with green fields, seas of rice paddies and mesmerizing mountain ranges.

You have your passport ready. You must have a travel visa. China requires a Visa for all foreigners. You will be traveling to Beijing, China to study in their prestigious Peking University. You imagine yourself dwelling in traditional Chinese architecture and  practicing mandarin with your new classmates and friends. You are ready to learn, but are you ready to live there for a semester? Here are some helpful tips to help you stay safe and healthy while you study and explore in China.

Preparing for the journey

You visited the ClearCause website and downloaded the travel checklist:

  1. Now visit travel.state.gov to find country specific information about China. Be sure to look for information pertaining to your health and well-being, safety and security and
    travel conditions.
  2. For your protection, look into the crime rate. Compare the U.S. to China at NationMaster.
  3. Make sure to register your trip on the State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program
    (STEP)
    .
  4. Check the CDC.gov to see what possible health risks you can be exposed to. Click the   
    destination tab.
  5. Get your recommended shots and medications at least three to four weeks prior to
    departing.
  6. Shop around for travel insurance. Get insured in case a medical emergency arises.

Be on the lookout!

China has the largest population in the world. What does that mean? Be aware of your personal belongings and personal health. China has over 1.4 billion people. Be conscious of the following:

  1. Streets are often and always congested. As a student walking and biking to class and the local
    market, be aware of the roads. Motorist often do not look for pedestrians crossing. Pay close attention. It is a matter of life or death.
  2. China is filled with scams, counterfeit and theft. With a huge population, when you are out and about, hold onto your personal belongings and have them insight. If a business looks suspicious or if someone is acting strange, stray away. Don’t fall for their scams.
  3. Think before you eat or drink. Never drink from tap water unless it has been boiled. Unfortunately, China is very polluted, drinking water straight from the tap is a bad idea. Most travelers buy water versus boiling it. Food maybe too exotic for your digestive system. Be careful.
  4. There are five temperature zones in China, so depending on where you are going, be prepared. What is common throughout China is the elevation. Altitude sickness is a real deal and if you have never experienced it before, be kind to yourself. You will feel discomfort and experience headache, nausea, disorientation, etc. For a complete list of symptoms and how to treat them click here.

Now that you are equipped with the tools and resources, you are well on your way to China. China is a huge country with many sights to see. It will be an exciting and new adventure. Now it’s time to learn some mandarin. Depart smart! And have a safe journey!