All You Need to Know

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Giant Panda Chengdu
All You Need to Know, Cultural, Discover Chinese culture, Eating Out in Chengdu, Eating out in Zhuhai, Events in Chengdu, Events in Qingdao, Events in Zhuhai, Food, Things To Do in Chengdu, Things To Do in Dalian, Things To Do in Qingdao, Things To Do in Zhuhai

An introduction to China: Which accounts to follow

An introduction to China

Keen to learn more about China before carrying out your internship? We have picked out some of the best social media accounts and websites for learning about China, its language, culture and travel destinations! We have also chosen a couple of city-specific accounts if you are struggling to choose which city to do an internship in or want to find out more about the destination you have picked.

Learning Chinese

Looking for fun and easy ways to learn Chinese – take a look at the accounts below!

han_characters

The Instagram account han_characters makes Chinese characters easier to remember by creating drawings of them. Each post shows a single character as a picture and explains the different words that that character features in with example sentences. Not only does this make learning Chinese easier, especially if you have a picture memory, it also helps you to understand the meaning of single characters which helps in learning multi-character words. Your time on social media can be made productive by learning Chinese just scrolling through Instagram!

Check out their Instagram here

Han Characters

The Chairman’s Bao

The Chairman’s Bao has abridged news articles in Chinese which you can filter according to HSK level. The website and app have a built-in dictionary and keywords and grammar points are listed at the end of every article. You can read sample articles for free, but to access all their language resources you have to pay a monthly subscription fee. However, the blog section is free and offers good tips and advice for learning Chinese, as well as articles about Chinese culture and news.

Check out the website here or download the app here 

Chairmans Bao

Travel in China

Want some inspiration of where to travel to China? Follow these accounts to see some incredible photography of China’s gorgeous landscapes, historic sites and cityscapes.

loves_china

This account collates photos from around China and provides a description of the location, including an explanation about the place’s history and geography.

Check out their Instagram here

Loves China

nathan_ackley

Nathan Ackley is a photographer based in Shanghai and Taiwan and the majority of his photos document these two places. He captures the buzzing cosmopolitan life in Shanghai, as well as beautiful temples and traditional buildings.

Check out his Instagram here

nathan ackley

theotherchina

The account provides awe-inspiring photographs of life in rural China with short extracts explaining their background. It is summarised by their bio: “you know the city, now get to know the country – see how China’s other half lives”.

Check out their Instagram here

The Other China

News about China

Sixthtone

Sixthtone offers news and investigatory stories about China which you may not find in the mainstream news. The stories are split into five sections, based on the Chinese language’s five tones: rising tones, half tones, deep tones, broad tones and vivid tones. Each offers a different perspective on news and life in contemporary China. Sixthtone’s articles, photography and videos cover a wide scope of issues including social trends, economic development and life in rural areas. The weekly summary of China’s Week in Photos provides an insight into the hugely varied events and developments going on in China.

Check out their website here, Instagram here or Facebook here

Sixth Tone

 

China Daily

Follow China Daily if you want to keep up-to-date with national news and understand a Chinese perspective on international news stories.

Scan the QR code below to follow their WeChat account

China Daily QR Code

Cultural differences

Tinyeyescomics

This Instagram account uses pictures to convey the cultural differences between China and the West which are based on the illustrator’s experience of being a Chinese person living in the West. They may help prepare you for some of the cultural differences you will experience in China and resonate with you if you have spent time in China before!

Check out their Instagram here

Tiny Eyes Comics

Tiny Eyes Comics

Chengdu

Chengdu Expat

Chengdu Expat’s WeChat and Facebook account lists recent news and upcoming events in Chengdu. Look here for all the best business, cultural and nightlife events, as well as some discounts and deals. The Instagram account also features a variety of pictures showcasing life in Chengdu which will give you an idea of what you might see, do and eat while you’re here!

Check out their Instagram here, Facebook here or follow them on WeChat: Chengdu Expat.

Chendu expat

sheleads

sheleads is an international network for professional females in Chengdu and offers a mentorship programme and listing of events which focus on female empowerment and feature women. In 2019, they organised a Female Week and launched a podcast.

Follow them on Wechat: sheleads

She Leads

 

Zhuhai

discoverzhuhai

discoverzhuhai showcases the local sites of Zhuhai and the surrounding region.

Check out their Instagram here

Discover Zhuhai

zhuhaieater 

This new account started by an InternChina intern shows the vast range of delicious food available in Zhuhai with their locations listed. With zhuhaieater’s help, you will never go hungry in Zhuhai again!

Check out their Instagram here

Zhuhai Eater

 

Qingdao

RedStar

This account targeted at expats lists upcoming events in Qingdao and information about the city.

Check out their Instagram here or follow them on WeChat: redstarqd

Red Star

 

Visit.qingdao

The official tourist account for Qingdao offers snapshots of its scenery throughout the seasons.

Check out their Instagram here

Visit Qingdao

Dalian

Unfortunately Dalian is currently lacking any English language accounts but check out InternChina’s blog section about Dalian to learn more about previous interns’ experience here and maybe you will be inspired to start an account during your placement!

Dalian

 

And, of course, don’t forget to follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for more information about our placements, destinations and trips.

All You Need to Know, Before your stay, Comparisons, Discover Chinese culture, Eating out in Zhuhai, Food, Learn about China, Things To Do in Zhuhai, Travel

Harbin vs Zhuhai

How I ended up in the “City of Ice”

As a student of Business Management and Mandarin, I had to make a choice of city in China for my year abroad. The year abroad, in my case, consists of two components: one year study and a two month internship. I decided early that I wanted to study in one city and do an internship in a different city, for different experiences.

North vs South

Originally, I was very keen on studying in a city in the southern part of China, for many reasons that include: climate, food, proximity to the sea, and much more. As a Portuguese person, I searched for a similar place to go to (and to make the cultural shock a little less noticeable!), However, it went a little different than expected (in a good way!).

I applied and was accepted for a one-year Confucius institute full scholarship in Harbin! The coldest city in China! This peculiar city in northeast China fulfilled my main criteria which was: must have majority Mandarin speakers, who speak in a standard way. My other criteria: I will study in a city where English is remotely spoken, so that I can have the best learning experience. I stuck to these two important criteria and must say, had a great experience learning Mandarin in Harbin.

How I ended up in the “City of romance”

When it came to apply for my internship, Zhuhai was already on my mind. I wanted a place different from Harbin. I wanted to feel the warmth of the sun again, and so I did for two months in the lovely city of Zhuhai. As expected these two cities are extremes in so many categories, that some may ask “Why did you go to Zhuhai/Harbin?”.

Let’s talk about some of those differences:

Architecture

For those who aren’t familiar with Harbin, it’s a city located in Heilongjiang Province right at the top right corner of China, bordering Russia’s Siberia. So, one can imagine just how cold it is. Harbin’s winter lasts about 6 months reaching minimum’s of – 40 º C. Harbin is, in fact “the City of Ice”, famous for it’s ice buildings and statues and icy festivals. Moreover, it’s important to point out, Russian entrepreneurs who wanted to recreate their motherland, built the Harbin of today. So its buildings are very Russian, in the way they look, but with Chinese banners. It’s this odd combination that makes it such a peculiar city, interesting on the foreign eye.

Zhuhai is the complete opposite. The buildings are tall, and mostly dark grey and white. While it sounds depressing, it goes well with the city’s landscape. Zhuhai is relaxing on the eye, because it is a mixture of human landscape and nature. Wherever you go you’re sure to see trees, bushes, anything that screams Nature.

Harbin’s Architecture is heavily influenced by Russia

Zhuhai’s main focus point is the balance between human landscape and nature

Food

Beifang’s food (North China) and Nanfang’s food (South China) is completely different. Not only that, but also it varies according to the region.

Harbin’s food is delicious, flavored and mostly fried. But I couldn’t understand why most food was fried. Until a teacher explained that due to the extreme cold weather in Harbin, there was a preference for oil-based food (it will heat your body and help fight coldness). Zhuhai’s food is light, flavored and with a lot more vegetable side dishes. Both are not too spicy, so both Harbin and Zhuhai’s food are very delicious.

Harbin’s cuisine
Zhuhai’s cuisine

Meeting Foreigners

That was, for me, the biggest difference between the two. While in Harbin, Chinese people tend to be more amazed whenever they see a foreigner for the first time. Nevertheless they are very welcoming and overall very curious about the countries we come from. They may even ask for a picture.

Zhuhai’s people may also be amazed, but are much more relaxed when meeting foreigners. Overall, I found that a large portion of people in Zhuhai can speak basic english while no one in Harbin could. I imagine the proximity to both Macau and Hong Kong, two ex-colonies and now special administrative regions (SAR) played an important role in this.

My veredict

Harbin and Zhuhai are two very different cities in so much more aspects other than the one’s I have listed. That is the fun part and makes my first time in China so special. I highly recommend visiting both north and south china and deciding which one provides for the the most enjoyable experience.

All You Need to Know

First two weeks as an intern in China – difficulties and solutions!

Introduction

Arriving in a totally different country can be confusing more many people, both culturally and professionally. Some difficulties will be there, but after 3 months in China I can say that the first 2 weeks were the richest weeks of discovery and experience!

The difficulties encountered during this period not only allow us to develop our problem-solving skills but also make the experience even more exciting!

Before You Arrive

Of course, to avoid some problems on your arrival, it’s sensible to take some steps before your departure:

  • Check the dates of your visa to buy your plane tickets. You must always return to your country at least 2 days before the end of the visa.
  • Tell your bank about your departure dates and your destination so that your card does not get blocked once in China, which could be very inconvenient! In addition, do not forget to consult your bank regarding withdrawal limits and payment fees. In China you do not pay with your credit card everywhere, you often have to withdraw. Note: with a Visa card, you can’t withdraw from all bank ATMs China.
  • Purchase a VPN. Without this, many Western sites will no longer be accessible and it is difficult to download a VPN in China (without access to Google & Google play!)
  • Download Baidu, Baidu Maps and Baidu Translate.
  • Check the weather in your chosen city to know what to pack, to avoid suffering from cold/ heat and having to buy clothes once you arrive!
  • Tip! If you want to control your expenses, do not hesitate to download a currency converter on your phone.

Your First Two Weeks in China

Remember that any problems or difficulties you encounter in China will always have a solution!

I will now quote some of the “classic” difficulties that you will encounter during your first 2 weeks in China, and explain how to overcome these in a simple way!

InternChina- Navigation sur BaiduMaps
Baidu Maps

Lost on the way to your internship?

  1. On your first trip to work with one of the InternChina members, take pictures of the bus stop / buildings as a landmark.
  2. Plan the trip on BaiduMaps. You can find a quick tutorial here!
  3. Contact InternChina if you are really lost or unsure about your orientation. We are here to help you!

Not sure what to do in the office? Very busy colleagues?

  1. Do some research on the market, the competition and make a list of the new vocabulary you encounter.

    Chinese Colleagues
    Chinese Colleagues
  2. You can then impress your colleagues and managers with your knowledge and show that you are thirsty to learn and be involved!
  3. Ask what is expected of you and the tasks you will need perform – the Chinese appreciate and encourage proactivity among their employees

Having problems with the language barrier?

  1. Explain that you are a little “rusty” in the morning (no coffee yet!).
  2. Ask them to clearly write their request so that you do not forget.

Do not worry, over time you will learn to understand the different accents of your colleagues!

If English isn’t your first language, are you shy because you are not confident?

  1. Don’t underestimate your English skills and don’t be discouraged. Your English will gradually improve over time and you will become confident very quickly!
  2. Remember, youu will not be the only non native-English speaker on the spot!
  3. Feel free to express your lack of confidence if you want to be reassured.
  4. Nobody will judge you, on the contrary! People are aware that it is not easy for you to start and that you need time to adapt.

Do you have trouble making yourself understood by taxi drivers?

  1. Take BaiduMaps (tutorial!) and ask your colleagues a few well-known places in the city.
  2. Add these places to your BaiduMaps favorites and learn to pronounce them in Chinese!

Believe me, this is a good workout! After 2 or 3 tries, the driver will understand you and you will be on your way to independence!

InternChina - Taxi en Chine
Taxis in China

 

You do not know where to exchange your foreign currency for RMB?

  1. Simplest option: do this directly upon your arrival in China (at the airport or port). Currency exchange counters will be present.
  2. If not, ask one of the members of InternChina, they will know how to answer you for sure.

Some counters offer cheap exchange rates, it is sometimes better to compare before making a choice. For advice, contact our team!

InternChina - Change de devises
Currency exchange counter

 

Want to meet new people?

  1. Whether you live in an apartment or a homestay, don’t hesitate to join our dinners on Thursday evening and our activities or trips on weekends. Find out more about our services in Zhuhai here and Qingdao here.
  2. The other interns also want to make new friends, so don’t be shy! Add the other IC members on WeChat (Wechat tutorial) and get to know them!
  3. The outings between trainees are numerous, you’ll have many opportunities!

What to eat at the restaurant?

Going to a restaurant can be intimidating when the local language is unknown to us and we can not read or speak it! Fortunately, there are some useful tips:

  1. If the menu is written exclusively in Chinese and you can not read it, refer to the images to choose your dish.
  2. If you want to know what you are eating and are ready to learn some basics, here is a very useful blog on how to read a Chinese menu!

Conclusion

I hope these few tips will help you get a glimpse of what awaits you in China and have reassured you about your potential! With some effort, it’s quite possible to overcome any difficulties you may encounter during your first 2 weeks in China. You will come out of this experience bigger and more independent than ever! And don’t forget, our team is available 24 hours a day to answer any problem!

Ready to embark on the InternChina adventure? Click here!

All You Need to Know, Chinese Traditions, Eating Out in Chengdu, Eating out in Zhuhai, Food, How-to Guides, Learn about China, Qingdao Eating Out Guide

How to Read a Chinese Menu

As you may know, in China food is one of the most important things! Indeed, sharing a meal is a social opportunity that is loved across China. However, reading a Chinese menu can seem intimidating.
At InternChina we love food too – check out this blog in order to know more about how we help you to explore Chinese cuisine. If you have never tried Chinese food before, don’t worry, you’ll definitely experience this soon enough!

And fear not, this article is here to hopefully help you understand a Chinese menu, so you can order yourself and impress your Chinese colleagues and friends!

The Chinese language may appear to be the most difficult language in the world at first, as we are not used to the Chinese characters. But don’t be intimidated! This ancient language is following a certain logic – as soon as you understand the logic, you’ll be able to read a Chinese menu without a doubt!

To avoid giving you a long history lesson, let’s just say that originally all Chinese characters were created using pictures, and were developed into the calligraphic style that we see today through several different steps.

History of Chinese Characters

Let me show you the evolution of the Chinese character for “horse” – if you don’t want to order this kind of dish, just look for it in a Chinese menu!

Now that you can understand how the Chinese characters work, just use your imagination and it will be way easier to read a menu! Let me show you some examples of the main ingredients you’ll find in a Chinese menu.

Meat on the Menu

These are basically the most common kinds of meat you’ll find on a menu in China. While horse meat isn’t that popular, in some places donkey meat is! Therefore, for donkey meat dishes you will have the character for horse, and one other symbol that looks similar to the tall ears of the donkey! So a donkey is a horse with tall ears, easy to remember- right? Can you find two more very similar characters? When you understand that the Chinese language is logic, it seems less and less hard, right?

After most of those characters in a Chinese menu you’ll see “肉-rou” that means “meat”.

Vegetables on the Menu

Obviously, the Chinese language can’t always be explained by pictures, but you can still see the logic behind the characters.

Let’s look at “potato” as an example. “Tu” means “earth“, and “dou” means “bean“. A potato is a bean that comes from the earth – easy!

Another interesting story can be found with “tomato.” Tomatoes weren’t originally found in China, they were imported. So in the Chinese name for tomato we have: “Xi” meaning “West“, “Hong” meaning “Red“, and “Shi” meaning “Persimmons“. Can you guess why? Because a tomato looks like a “red-persimmon imported from the West”! Clever, right?

Bai” means “white” and “Cai” means vegetable, so the white vegetable is also know as the delicious Chinese cabbage! The easiest way to remember a Chinese character is to make a story from the shape of the character, or ask your Chinese friends to explain the character to you!

Main Dishes

These are the main characters you’ll see in the dishes, so you’ll see if you are going to eat soup or some noodles.

Just one thing to remember about rice, restaurants commonly use “米饭” or just “饭” – character FAN–  for rice. And a funny tip about “egg”- “dan” means egg, but in Chinese you’ll always call it a “Chicken egg”.

For the soup “tang” can you see the three dots on the left hand-side ? Looks like drops of water, right? Exactly! That’s the way of describing an object or dish with water inside, so now you all know that there is water in the soup now!

Our Favourite Dishes

Now that we’ve showed you the main characters you’ll see in a Chinese menu, let’s give you some more tips and the names of our favourite dishes!

These might take some more imagination to remember, as it won’t be as easy as the characters for various animals which were very close to the actual picture of the animal. However, these cards will be super useful while reading a Chinese menu. And, you can also show them in the restaurants if you can’t find them on the Chinese menu!

Don’t hesitate to choose those dishes if you see them on a Chinese menu, they’re delicious!

You can find the two first ones in every Halal restaurant, also known in Chinese as “Lanzhou Lamian, “and you can recognise these restaurants by the characters on the outside door: ‘兰州拉面‘. And the other dishes are found in any typical Chinese restaurant!

  • XiHongshi Chao Jidan: Egg and tomato with rice.
  • Jidan Chao Dao Xiao Mian: Fried egg, vegetables and cut noodles (this might be little spicy in some places!)
  • Feng Wei Qie Zi : Fried aubergines.
  • Tang Cu li Ji: Sweet and sour pork.
  • Gan bian Da tou Cai : “Big head vegetable!” This will be some delicious Chinese cabbage and spicy sauce.
  • Gong Bao Ji Ding : Chicken, peanuts and veggies, with a sweet and spicy sauce.

Please Don’t Forget!

Here some tips, that may save you one day – who knows!

  • If a character has on the left-hand side it is likely to be some sort of guts/intestines/belly/insides, i.e. run in the opposite direction!
  • Are you a vegetarian or vegan? Then always avoid meals with this character ““, as this is “rou“, which means “meat.”
  • Allergic to peanuts? This is the character you need to avoid : “花生“, pronounced “huasheng.”
  • If you can’t eat spicy food, avoid this red one! “La” “” means spicy.

There is different kind of spicy food that our interns in Chengdu will be pleased to try! When you see those characters : be ready to experience some tingling and numbing sensation.

Don’t hesitate to ask our staff members on place to help you out with the pronunciation, or if you need any help ordering your food!

Did this help to convince you that living in China isn’t that difficult? Well then, you just need to apply now!

All You Need to Know, How-to Guides, Learn about China

Baidu Maps Step by Step Tutorial

As you may know, in China you’ll need a VPN to use your favourite apps via Google. And most of the time the traditional Google Maps isn’t really accurate in China, so it’s better to be able to use Chinese map applications. No worries, when you arrive in China our team on place will give you an orientation and help you discover Baidu Maps. However this application is all in Chinese, so we thought this tutorial would be helpful in case you don’t remember all the information we give you on your first day in China!
Our team will help you download the app, and set up your account when you’ll arrive, so I won’t talk about those steps!

Don’t forget : when you want to use Baidu Maps, turn off you VPN – it will be faster!

Favourite Places

Want to know how to save a location as a favourite in Baidu? Follow those steps:

  1. Type the location name or address. For example, the LPG Bar in Qingdao is “Laofeijiuba”
  2. Click on the location and it will appear on the map
  3. To save it for later, just press the star on the left bottom corner – you did it !

How to Find Your Favourite Places

  1. Click on your profile
  2. Click on the Star to access your favourites
  3. To rename it, long press on the location
  4. Then choose “重命名”
  5. Use a name that you’ll easily remember, like LPG
  6. Click on “确定” to save it! Easy right?

Bus and Subway Maps

Want to know the bus or metro route, and the timetable? You just need to use Baidu Maps!

  1. For subway line: enter the line number + “haoxian”
  2. For bus line: enter bus number + “lu”
  3. Choose the 1st choice, or one that looks correct
  4. Now you can see the entire route, and timetable in both directions
  5. Click here to find out where is the nearest bus station
  6. Click here to go there by foot without getting lost!

Reminder:

  • 1st stop is indicated by the green pointer, and the last one by the red one.

Route

Let’s say, today is Thursday, and you signed in to join us! Unfortunately you can’t use the location we gave you on our group chat. No worries, we will always give you the location, and the address so you can either follow the location, or search for it on Baidu yourself!

Let’s say tonight we are going to Magic Eggplant in Qingdao: 大尧三路26号 (Dayaosanlu 26hao)

  1. Copy the adress here
  2. To see the route, click on the blue button
  3. Taxi route will appear firstly, you can see how much it might cost you if you chose this option, here 10 RMB
  4. Click here to chose the public transportation way, and chose the first route for example ( to know more go the bonus pictures)
  5. How to go there? Follow the foot
  6. When is the bus coming? It’s one stop away on this case
  7. Ok we arrived at the bus stop, let’s go to the restaurant – follow the blue foot again!

Bonus Information

For those who can’t read or speak Chinese, here is some more information on how to be a pro at Baidu Maps!

  • Left part : How many stops in total / Right part : How long will the journey take
  • Are you walking somewhere? First you can see how long it will take you, and how far the place is
  • To pick the more suitable route, look at the duration, and kilometers to see what’s more convenient. Usually, 1st option is faster, but might have to walk more

I guess you’re now ready to come to China, so why not apply now!

All You Need to Know, Discover Chinese culture, Events in Qingdao, Learn about China, Qingdao Blogs, Qingdao InternChina Events, Things To Do in Qingdao, Weekend Trips

More Than Just an Internship – What We Do in Qingdao!

InternChina – More than just an internship!

But what does this really mean in Qingdao? It means weekly dinners, activities and 24/7 support!

I’ve been an office intern for about 3 months now, so I hope I can explain this for you!

During your programme, you’ll have the amazing opportunity to do an internship in China, but that’s not the only think you’ll experience during your time in Qingdao! The InternChina team will organise lots of dinners and activities for you. This is so we can get to know you better, make you feel comfortable in this new country, and give you a chance to meet amazing people! And if you love travelling, there are plenty of great destinations we can help you visit that aren’t too far from Qingdao!

As a Qingdao office intern, I have the opportunity to organise the dinners and trips for our participants. I’ll tell you more about it, so you’ll have an idea of the amazing things you may get the chance to do, and you can discover more about Qingdao.

If you have anything you want to do around Qingdao, just let a member of InternChina know and we can try our best to organise this for you!

Food

Every week we organise one of our famous “Thursday Dinners.”

This is a social event, to share a group meal, discover new Asian cuisine and talk about our week! We understand that you are students, so don’t worry- we try to make these dinners affordable! Usually, we try to avoid expensive restaurants, but they are always tasty. We usually stick to a budget of 50RMB per person, and sometimes this is even less.

How do we organise these dinners? Usually we make a post on our official Qingdao InternChina WeChat account, or we post in our IC Qingdao group chat.

We’ll give you some more details about the restaurant, the cuisine, the food, the time and the location of the dinner. If you’re interested in coming along, then simply join the dinner group by scanning the QR code we’ll provide! This helps us know how many people want to come along, so we can book a table. During the summer, we can have more than 30 people for dinner!

But it’s our job to organise this- all you need to do is scan the QR code and join! How easy is that?

Activities

After a week of working hard during your internship, we’re sure you’ll look forward to exploring Qingdao at the weekend! There is so much to do and discover in Qingdao, and we understand that you want to get out there, so we organise lots of activities and trips for you!

We try to organise a new activity every weekend, and just like the dinners, we try to make sure these activities are all affordable so you can take part in as much as you can.

What can Qingdao offer you? There are lots of fun tourist activities,such as the Tsingtao Beer Museum, the TV Tower, the zoo, the aquarium, the Huadong Vineyard. However, we also want to make sure you see the natural beauty in Qingdao! Outdoor activities such as hiking Fushan or Laoshan with our guide Green Tea, bouldering, archery, go karting are always popular, especially during the summer.

We also want you to learn about the Chinese culture while you are here, so we organise cultural activities such as calligraphy classes, Chinese cooking lessons, tea ceremonies, or even Kung Fu lessons!

There are different things to do during different seasons, so you may also get to attend the German Christmas Market, or some opening ceremonies!

You will definitely never be bored, with plenty of activities available for you to explore the city, have fun, and network!

Trips

We also try to organise some weekend trips for you to discover other cities in China.

Recently, we organised a weekend trip to Beijing- after all, it would be a shame to come to China and not visit the Great Wall! In the past we have also organised trips to Shanghai, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Suzhou and Qufu… the possibilities are endless!

For any weekend trips we organise, we will provide you with a detailed schedule so you can make the most of your time in each city! We will also let you know how much each trip will cost, and this will include your transport, accommodation and activities for the weekend. It will cost more than a regular Saturday Event, but it is definitely worth going and exploring more of China!

 

Support

The InternChina team offer you 24/7 support while you are on place, and we are also here for you before and after your time in China!

When you arrive, we will pick you up from the airport and take you directly to your accommodation, whether is an apartment or a homestay. We’ll also give you an orientation to help you understand Chinese culture, and give you some advice about living in Qingdao.

You will receive a welcome pack, which includes a SIM card, travel card, map of the city, and address card and some InternChina goodies!

We are here for you whenever you need us!

Moreover, our team on place is also always here to support you! When you arrive we will give you an orientation, in order to make you understand Chinese culture, and give you lots of advice! If you feel sick, we will come with you to the hospital! If you have any other issues, we are here to help if we can!

InternChina’s Favourite Places 

When you are new to Qingdao, and don’t know where to go or what to see, we’re here to tell you where to go! Below is a list of my favourite places- you can even impress your colleagues with your Qingdao knowledge and invite them along!

Magic Eggplant – or the best Chinese restaurant ever! 美达尔大尧三路店 – Dayao San Road

ChunChuan Iron Plate – best Korean restaurant! 青岛市崂山区苗岭路  瑞纳花园内 Miao Ling Road

Huadong Winery – a beautiful vineyard, where you can visit the museum,the caves and try some wine at the end! 南龙口崂山Nanlong Kou, Lao Shan

ZhongShan Park – an amazing park where you can easily walk around for hours! The zoo is right next to it if you want to see a panda! 市南区文登路28号 Wen Deng Road

I hope these details and pictures convinced you that InternChina has so much more than just an internship to offer you! You’ll never feel alone, and this experience will be unforgettable!

The easiest way to join us is to apply now!

 

All You Need to Know, Before your stay, How-to Guides, Travel

Getting Ready for China: Setting up Your WeChat Account

Ever wondered how to use the famous WeChat? Here’s a handy guide to turn you from no to pro.

A Little Introduction

WeChat is the biggest social media platform in China, with over 963 million monthly users. It is primarily an instant messaging app however there are many more features than just instant messaging. WeChat or Wēi Xìn is the bread and butter of daily life in China and an essential part of your stay. You’ll need it to speak to friends, contact colleagues and even buy your coffee with it!

Image of the WeChat logo on a PC screen

Getting Started with WeChat

It’s actually really easy to set up a WeChat account. The process is very similar to Whatsapp, in that you need to download the WeChat app from the app store (iTunes, Google Play etc.) and create an account using your phone number.

Here’s a step-by-step guide of how to set up WeChat on your phone:

  1. Download the app.
  2. Once downloaded, open the app and click “sign up”
  3. Type your number into the field and click sign up, be sure to choose the right area code, e.g UK, USA etc.
  4. WeChat will send a verification code to the chosen number: go into messages, find the verification code and enter it into the “Code” field.
  5. Once confirmed, type in your name and finish creating your account.
  6. After this you’re good to go!

 

 Opening your Keyboard

To start a text chat, open your keyboard just like in WhatsApp or SMS. Tap the space beside the speaker icon and your keyboard becomes accessible!

 Adding Friends

Now that your account is ready to go it’s time to start making friends. Adding people on WeChat is quick and easy, so it’s great for networking or if you’re on the go.

You can add friends a few ways. The first is to search for their username or phone number, and the second is to scan their personalised QR code.

Adding Contacts by Username & Phone Number

  1. Click the ” + ” icon at the top right hand of your home screen.
  2. Click the space beside the search icon which says “WeChat ID/ Phone.”
  3. Type the username/ phone number into the space saying “WeChat ID/ Phone.”
  4. When you type in the username, click on the green search button that appears.
  5. Their contact card will appear on your screen. Click “Add”
  6. You’re now connected!

Adding Contacts with a QR Code 

  1. Click the + icon at the top right hand of your home screen.
  2. Select “Add Contacts” then “Scan QR Code”
  3. Ask your friend to show you their “Profile QR code”.
  4. Point your phone camera at the code to scan it.
  5. Their contact card will appear on your screen. Click “Add”
  6. Congrats! You’ve just added your first contact!

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Lettings Others Add You 

Others can add you by your username, the phone number associated with your account or by scanning your personalised QR code.

To access your personal QR code, go to the “Me” page in WeChat, click on either your profile picture or the QR code beside your username, and open your QR code!

Making a Group Chat

To make a group chat in WeChat, simply go to the ” + ” symbol in the top right of your screen, and then select the “Group Chat” option. Then, add your contacts!

 

Following Official Accounts

Groups are a big part of how people communicate via WeChat and we regularly use them to post updates about IC activities. To keep up to date with weekly dinners, trips and the latest news be sure to follow the official InternChina subscription accounts and join the group chats.

You can join the subscription accounts the same way you add contacts- simply choose “Official Accounts” in the menu, and then search for the account you want to follow! You can type in “IC” and this will bring up all the InternChina city accounts.

How to Communicate

In WeChat, you can text, send voice messages, make phone calls and make video calls (similar to Skype.)

Sending a Voice Message

To send a voice message, click on the speaker icon beside your keyboard. Then, press the “hold to talk” button, and continue holding this until you are finished speaking. Then simply release and your message is sent! To cancel a message, just drag and release your finger.

Video Calling

You will most likely use a WeChat video call for your interview with your host company, so it’s important you know how to make one!

  1. Open the right conversation- either an existing chat with the contact, or open a new chat by finding the contact in your contacts list.
  2. Open the chat menu by pressing the ” + ” button at the bottom of your conversation screen.
  3. Select the option for a video call.
  4. You’re ready to go!

The same method applies to starting a voice call.

 

Once you have your WeChat set up you are ready to start life in China! Check out our video on how to use WeChat to sign up to IC activities and follow our official account.

 

 

All You Need to Know

Taipei – Everything you need to know

Taipei is the capital city of Taiwan, it is situated in the north of the island in the so-called Taipei Basin; mountain ranges filled with hot springs surround the city. The city’s appropriate name literally means “north of Taiwan”. Central Taipei is home to nearly 2.7 million people, has an area of 271.8 sq. km and is rich in leisure and recreation, cultural arts, heritage sites, and other attractions, it enjoys a superb geographical position and world renowned transportation networks and an comfortable climate all year round.
In many ways this 300-year-old city is like a living museum. The Taoist temples buzz with the prayers of the hopeful; the wooden boards of Japanese-era mansions creak under the feet of visitors; and the pilfered treasures in the National Palace Museum date back 5000 years. Merchant villas to military barracks have been restored, reworked and now live again as a museum or a shopfront. From the heirlooms of a tea merchant to the memories of a cemetery for the victims of the White Terror, Taipei is a city that takes great pride in celebrating its history.
When you zoom in on Taipei, there are a lot of landmarks to be found. The most famous one is definitely Taipei 101, which is officially known as the Taipei International Financial Center. This skyscraper with 101 floors is one of the world’s tallest structures. It dominates the city’s skyline, rising up from between the rest of the buildings like a giant bamboo stick

Placement programme

You can choose from our wide array of placement companies based on your sector preference. InternChina will conduct a short interview with you then introduce you to prospective host companies for an internship interview. Should you be successful, InternChina will send the booking form for you to confirm your placement.
View our list of placement companies here
The companies will treat you like a full member of staff, the Taiwanese work hard and are very hospitable to foreign students. You will be immersed in the local culture and working environment for a rich learning experience. Not only will you learn about your chosen field but more importantly about how to do business in an international environment, out of your comfort zone, with InternChina supporting you all the way!

Timeframe

From September 2017 onwards, for placements of 6-12 months. Just let us know your ideal timeframe and we will approach the potential placement companies with your requirements to find the ones which can accommodate you.
InternTaiwan will assist you to get a visa which allows you to work and be paid for any duration up to 12 months. This is included in our price.

Accommodation

We will assist you in sourcing and renting a room in a shared apartment with other western professionals or local Taiwanese (your choice!) or a studio apartment all to yourself following these steps:
+ Outline your preferences for the apartment
+ We will suggest a short list of potential matches which suit your preferences and placement location (shown to you before arrival)
+ Upon arrival we will accompany you to visit the matching apartments until you have chosen one which you like
+ InternChina will help you with the contract and offer advice should there be any problems

Rent in Taipei varies between districts and duration but you should budget around £200 – £300 per month for a bedroom in a shared apartment.

Apply now to find out more about our placement programme in Taipei – https://internchina.com/placements/

Taipei has many districts all with their own unique feel: Xinyi is the modern business hub where Taipei 101 is located with lots of nice restaurants and shops, Ximending feels more like a cool Japanese shopping area with lots of people in crazy outfits, lots of bustling shops and street performers. If you venture south east you get to the more rural parts of the city, this is where the pandas are, the mountain cable cars and the tea terraces. West of the city is the more traditional part, where you can find lots of temples, museums and ancient streets to explore. And in the north you can ride the metro all the way to the beach… It really is a city with something for everyone!
Taipei has two main airports. Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is the largest airport in Taiwan, serving 42.3 million passengers in 2016. It even has direct flights to mainland Europe, the UK, the US, and more. The other airport, Taipei Songshan Airport, has mainly domestic flights.
Over 3 million tourists visit Taipei every year, making it the world’s 15th most visited city. Taipei has an extensive metro system that makes it easy to get around the city. The bus system is world famous and taxis are also quite cheap.

The Tropic of Cancer runs straight through the middle of Taiwan, bringing with it tropical and subtropical weather. Taipei has a similar climate to our other destination city – Zhuhai. Taipei usually presents an average temperature of 22C (71.6F) all year round. There is no severe cold in winter, but the weather in summer is very hot with high humidity.

During winter, the island experiences continental high pressure systems from Mongolia and Siberia, and is influenced primarily by the northeastern monsoon climate. The coldest months in Taipei are from January to March with the lowest temperatures going to about 10C (50F). Sometimes, in rare cases, you can see snow on the high mountains.
In summer, the island’s weather is controlled by the marine high pressure system formed above the Pacific Ocean, with a humid, southwestern monsoon climate. The hottest months are from June to August with the highest temperature up to around 38C (100F).
Taiwan has a naturally humid climate. June to October is the typhoon season in Taiwan, with plenty of brief showers and rainfall. So don’t forget to bring your umbrella!

Taipei is already a bustling city during the day, but it’s night when the atmosphere really gets exciting. The city is famous for its mazes of street vendors that offer an enticing range of snacks and delicacies. Here’s some delicious foods you can try:

BEEF NOODLES

This staple of Taiwanese cuisine can be found almost anywhere in Taipei. The dish combines slow-cooked beef in stock drenched over handmade noodles. The soy sauce and five spices give it irresistible aroma and taste.

SHRIMPS

Arguably the most popular fish dish in Taipei, there are even restaurants around which let you fish for your own shrimps and then barbeque them for you!

BUBBLE TEA

Surely you have tried this fun drink, but did you know it is from Taiwan? Allegedly invented out of boredom by a Taiwanese vendor in 1988, this delicious drink combines the tea with sweet, chewy tapioca pudding balls.

LIU SHA FRITTER

Imagine this as a Taiwanese donut. It is a sweet, fried bun filled with silky, gold custard. A nice snack or desert that can be found in any night market.

FRIED BEEF ROLL

Comparable to a Western ‘wrap’ and yet beyond compare, this roll is made of crispy pancake filled with braised beef and vegetables, all brought together with a the slightly-sweet taste of black bean sauce.

Taipei has been a place of major importance in Taiwan as early as the Qing Dynasty, and continued to be so under Japanese rule from 1895-1945. However, it gained more prominence after 1949 when the Kuomintang led by Chiang Kai-shek fled to Taiwan near the end of the Chinese Civil War. Ever since then, Taipei has been a major city both domestically and globally as the capital of the Republic of China.

NATIONAL PALACE MUSEUM

When Chiang Kai-shek and the KMT fled to Taiwan in 1949 at the end of the Chinese Civil War, they brought along boatloads of priceless artifacts. Now home to nearly 700,000 pieces of Chinese artifacts and artwork, Taipei’s National Palace Museum is one of the richest treasure troves of ancient Chinese culture and history in the world. The Chiang Kai Shek memorial is also a sight to behold!

TAIPEI NIGHT MARKETS

One of numerous night markets in Taipei, Shilin is the biggest and most famous. This massive cluster of food streets offers a diverse range of tasty snacks including smelly tofu, ice cream spring rolls, soup dumplings, and more. For any foodie out there, this locale is a must-eat.

BEITOU HOT SPRINGS

As Taiwan is an island formed by volcanic activity, there is an abundance of beautiful mountains and natural hot springs. Perhaps the most popular in Taipei is Beitou Hot Springs, which provides world class hot springs to relax and feel rejuvenated. If you want more of an adventure you can travel to Yangmingshan national park to see the real volcanic hot springs.

TAIPEI ZOO

Taipei zoo is world famous and has its very own Panda base. Entrance is very cheap (approx. £1) and you can see animals from all over the world including the red Pandas and the black and white Pandas.

MAOKONG MOUNTAIN

Situated next to Taipei zoo, Maokong mountain hosts a multitude of sights and attractions, including tea terraces, ancient towns, temples and beautiful tea houses. Hike up the mountain if you like or take one of the cities new glass bottomed cable cars to cruise to the top. The best part of the mountain however has got to be the stunning panoramic views of the city.

FULONG BEACH

If you ride the metro to the most northern end of the line you will find yourself at one of Taiwans many awesome beaches – Fulong.
Fulong is a long sprawling beach with a temple at one end with lots of hill top bike trails surrounding.These are just a few of the many awesome attractions in Taipei, for more information and to find out what else there is to do, stay tuned for our next blog!
Don’t forget, Taipei is only a small part of Taiwan… The island is full of exciting places to visit and things to do, all easily accessible by train!

In Taiwan, they speak a form of Mandarin that is similar to the mainland, but has a few differences in pronunciation and vocabulary. The most marked difference for those able to read and write Chinese, however, is the writing system! While the mainland has been using simplified characters for decades now, Taiwan maintains usage of traditional characters, which illustrates its strong ties to traditional Chinese culture. For the old-school sinologists out there, Taipei is the place to go!

READY TO BOOK YOUR PLACEMENT PROGRAMME IN TAIPEI? HIT THE BUTTON BELOW!

OR IF YOU WANT TO READ ABOUT OUR OTHER PLACEMENT PROGRAMME IN CHENGDU… CLICK HERE!

 

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