Don't be Conned in Beijing

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Beijing, China

Don't be Conned in Beijing Reviews

spicyricecake spicyric…
30 reviews
Be careful of your money in Beijing Jul 29, 2011
Although Beijing is a great city with lots of sights, there are a lot of people there that want your money. They don't go as far as to steal your money out of your pocket, but beware, there are many tricks they use to con people. Here are several things I've learned, based on my own experiences, while traveling in Beijing. A lot of these are my own mistakes, and I would say I deserved it, but they taught me to be more aware.

Airport Shuttle bus - The bus runs from the Beijing Airport to certain parts of Beijing, and vise versa, every 15 or 30 minutes. However, if you take an airport shuttle bus from a station in Beijing, there is likely to be someone waiting to lie to you by telling you that the bus won't leave for another hour and that you'd miss your flight if you take it. In my case, it was a woman waiting right outside the bus, not letting me get on. She asked when my flight was, stated the bus wouldn't leave for a long time, and said there's a cab going to the airport, and suggested I go with another person that was waiting, so we can split the cabfare, 80 yuan per person (outrageous prices!). Trust me, the person is not associated with the airport shuttle, and is working with someone else trying to trick you to take the cab. Do not listen to them; get on the bus and wait a few minutes and the bus will be on its way. My mom had a similar experience last time in Beijing, except the lady was actually on the bus blocking the entrance. My mom didn't take the bait, and it was a while before that lady moved to let her on, after figuring that she wouldn't take the cab.

Beijing Silk and Pearl Market - Always examine your products before and after you buy them. This is not only true for Beijing Silk Market, but also any tourist market in Beijing. The people there lie in wait to try to trick you. If you're shopping there, I'm sure you already read on how to haggle and bargain prices. However, if you do get a more discounted price, be careful of the product and check it out again before you buy it. I was at Beijing Silk Market, and looking to souvenirs to buy. I saw a really beautiful Russian nesting doll at one of the stalls. The girl at the stall took it apart to show me the number of layers, and that it's made out of bamboo. I haggled down on the price, and the lady didn't want to sell it for that low. I started walking away from the stall, and as I was just 1 stall away, the lady called out to me and told me I can have it for the price I wanted. At the time, I was excited about getting it for a good price, so I hurried and paid. Upon coming home, I realized that the nesting doll was a different one than the one I was looking at; it was the same colors and style, but instead of having 8 layers, it had only 6, and was made of wood instead of bamboo.

Also, in the same market, I noticed a foreigner arguing with a woman at another stall. She had bought what she thought was two hairclips for the price of one the previous day, but when she got back to her hotel, she realized that they only bagged one. The girl at the stall claims that she doesn't remember ever selling the hairclip to her. The lesson is to always check your products before and after you buy them, and before you leave the stall, because later on they'll pretend they've never seen you before.

Eating at a restaurant - always check your bill before you pay. I was eating with my whole family at a big restaurant in Beijing. We had ordered several main dishes and many side dishes. Right after we ordered, we changed our mind on one of the main dishes, and decided on another. We tracked down our waitress, who stated she would change it. We did get the dish we wanted, but when the bill arrived we noticed that they tacked on the dish that we didn't want, along with the rest of the dishes. That extra dish costs about 60 yuan, so it wasn't cheap. Of course, because we noticed, we got the waitress to take the extra cost off.

Pharmacy - If you ever need OTC medicine of any kind, they don't sell them at most grocery stores or malls, you'd have to stop by a pharmacy. If you're not sure of the medicine, always ask the difference between them, as well as the difference in cost. When I was buying medicine because I didn't feel well, I made the mistake of not asking the difference. She asked me if I wanted domestic or imported, and I said imported without really knowing the difference. It turned out a lot more expensive than domestic, while the two work the same.
Beijing Airport Shuttle Bus
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
cotton_foam says:
Thank you for writing this review! It is helpful :)
Posted on: May 22, 2014
Chokk says:
Thanks for sharing!
Posted on: May 17, 2012
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