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CHINA FAQ’s

Home Icon Find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions from our customers

  • Is there a time difference?

    Beijing GMT +8hrs

  • What is the currency?

    Renminbi (commonly known as Chinese Yuan)

  • What will the weather be like?

    Weather patterns around the world are becoming less predictable. Our tour of China covers different provinces so the weather can be changeable, however as a general guide, during Spring and Autumn the weather tends to be warm and dry and a little cooler in the evenings. We recommend checking up-to date weather forecasts before you travel.

  • What clothing should I take to China?

    Dress for our tours is generally relaxed and informal during the day, dressing to suit the weather conditions and the activity you are undertaking. It’s likely there will be occasions when exploring you’ll be walking on uneven surfaces, so we recommend sturdy and comfortable walking shoes. Wearing layers of clothing means it’s much easier to deal with potentially varied weather conditions and it’s always advisable to carry a waterproof. Any included evening dinners are also informal, with smart casual dress being the norm. We would also recommend taking good insect repellent, a high factor sunscreen lotion and a hat for protection from the sun. It is always worth being aware of local customs when visiting sacred places. As a general rule when visiting such places, it is recommended that arms and legs are covered. Women may also wish to take a shawl to cover their shoulders and all visitors should wear long trousers, skirts or shorts that reach below the knee.

  • What is the best way to pay for things in China?

    Major credit cards are widely accepted in all hotels and on your cruise. ATMs are widely available in major cities, but less so in more rural areas. We do recommend that for any purchases outside of the hotel, including restaurants, especially outside of the major cities you use cash, as some establishments will not accept credit cards. Local currency is always recommended for small purchases. When you change money, ask for some small bills and keep these, along with coins separate from the larger ones, so that they’re readily accessible. If changing currency locally your tour manger will be on hand to help you find the best places to exchange your money. Keep your exchange receipts as these will be needed if you want to exchange any remaining currency you have at the end of your trip. We also recommend advising your bank of your travel plans in advance so you do not encounter potential problems when trying to withdraw cash.

  • How much should I tip in China?

    Tipping in China is generally uncommon. International hotels operate on more westernised principles, and small sums of five yuan for bell-boys, waiters in restaurants and cleaning staff is acceptable, but not expected. When eating in restaurants, a service charge of 10-15 percent will already be included in your bill. Tipping for taxi drivers is not expected however, rounding up the final fare is common. If you have received great service from your Tour Manager, guides or driver you may wish to tip them for their service. We are frequently asked for guidance on this and would suggest a minimum of £2-£3 per person, per guide and per driver per touring day, dependent on your level of satisfaction.

  • What are the entry requirements for China?

    The following information on entry requirements, passports and Visa’s is for British citizens only. Holders of a British Subject passport, non-British citizens and holders of a passport endorsed in any way should check immigration requirements with the relevant embassy or consulate of the country to be visited, as should clients with dual nationality or renounced citizenship.

  • Do I need to renew my passport?

    A valid ten-year British passport is required for all holidays, valid for a minimum of 6 months after your return date to the UK. When travelling to China you must also allow two blank pages for your visa. If you are not currently in possession of a valid passport please make sure you leave plenty of time before your holiday to apply for this document. Our recommendation is that you should apply at least three months before your holiday. A standard, 30-day single-entry visa can be issued in four to five working days.

  • Will I need a visa to enter China?

    To enter China you will are required to obtain a visa before you travel. You are required to obtain an L visa type and you apply for your visa via the China Visa Application Centre http://www.visaforchina.org/

    We recommend applying for your visa at least one month before your intended travel date. The cost of a single entry visa is £85.00 however, please note the China Visa Application Centre levies an extra administration fee of £66.00 for standard service, £78.00 for a 3 day express service and £90.00 for a postal service. Standard service and express service require you to submit and collect your visa in person, by appointment only. As part of the application process you need to show proof of an air-ticket booking and provide accommodation details. We will provide this information for you once your booking is confirmed. Please be aware our normal cancellation fees will apply if you are refused a Chinese Visa. More information can also be found on the Chinese Embassy website: http://www.chinese-embassy.org.uk/eng/visa/ Alternatively, you may prefer to use a visa agency to obtain your visa. We recommend The Travel Visa Company. For more information on passport information and entry requirements please visit the Government Passport Office website: www.gov.uk/browse/abroad/passports and the Foreign Office website www.gov.uk/foreign-travel advice It is important to note entry requirements may change and it is your responsibility to ensure you are in possession of all necessary travel, passport, visa, other entry requirements before departure. All costs incurred in obtaining such documentation must be paid by you. We regret we cannot accept any liability if you are refused entry onto any transport or into any country due to failure on your part to obtain and carry all required documentation.

  • Do I need to have any vaccinations?

    Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide. You should take health advice from your GP or local travel clinic about your specific needs as early as possible and ensure that vaccinations or preventative measures are taken early enough (which may be a month or more prior to departure) to be fully effective by the date of travel. For more information on health and vaccinations please visit the Foreign Office website www.gov.uk/foreign-traveladvice and NHS Travel Vaccinations website on: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/travel-vaccinations/

    Advice may change and you should check the most up to date position with your GP or local health / travel clinic in good time before departure.

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