Communication in China
China has communication systems similar to most Western countries. The major communication tools are public phones, hotel phones, mobile phones, internet, fax and postal services.
Telephone booths can be easily seen on the street. Users can either use coins or an IP card which can be purchased from most street vendors. Alternatively public telephones can be found in most corner shops. General fees for local calls are around 0.5 RMB. National calls fees range from 0.5 - 1 RMB. Please note that international calls can not be made from corner shop public phones.
China has become the fastest growing market for mobile use. There are two major mobile networks - China Mobile and China Unicom. You can conveniently purchase a monthly or Pay As You Go Chinese SIM card from any street vendor. Prices range from 50 – 200 RMB (5 – 20 USD). Call charges are around 3 Mao (0.05 USD) per minute.
International phone cards are highly recommended if you want to make an international call. Phone cards can be purchased from most phone shops and street vendors in Beijing. 17910 and 17908 are two popular cards for phoning abroad. Call charges are around 3 - 4 RMB per minute (0.5 - 0.7 USD). A card holding 100 RMB worth of credit can usually be bought at a 60% discount,, around 40 RMB.
Internet cafes are available everywhere in Beijing. Fees are around 2 - 5 RMB per hour and often drinks and snacks are available within the cafe. If you have your own laptop, most hotel rooms (3 star and above) have internet connectivity. There are also many cafes and bars which offer wireless connection.
There are many outlets providing fax services for a fee. The most convenient and safest way of sending a fax is through your hotel.
Postal service is available in hotels and post offices. UPS, FedEx , DHL, EMS, and TNT are also available in most post offices and express mail agencies.
How your friends can find you in China
Beijing -0086+10+your telephone number
Shanghai - 0086 + 21 + your telephone number
Hong Kong -00852 + your telephone number
Zhengzhou (Henan) -0086+371+your telephone number
Luo Yang (Henan) -0086+379+your telephone number
Xi’an -0086+29+your telephone number
Kunming -0086 + 871+ your telephone number
How you can call back home
Country Code: (e.g UK 0044+your home number without first zero)
Police: 110 / Fire Police: 119 / Ambulance: 120 /
Emergency: 999 / Inquiries: 114 / Time: 117 / Weather: 121
Embassies in Beijing
If you lost your passport or would like to speak to your embassy, please click here