Beijing, China: things to expect.
It was one of the emotional trips in 2017.
I never thought (never say never hah) it would be possible to go there together with him even for a moment. But we had a day and a half to spent in Beijing, thanks to 72-hour free transit visa (I will talk about it later in this post).
The next morning after our arrival, we woke up pretty early (thanks to jetlag) in the apartment where I used to live in 3,5 years ago. It was weird! I looked at the city so differently, maybe because I grew up or I don’t know. But it felt so crazy that at the age of 18 I lived in Beijing for almost 4 months and somehow I loved it back then. I would never imagine myself living there right now, thank you Canada (so far you’re the best in every way). We took a subway to the station, where I used to work, and walked to the cafe in order to have breakfast, surprisingly, it was not that crowded that morning.
Later on, we walked to my workplace building and had a lunch at my favorite Green Tea Restaurant (Jintaixizhao station), where I celebrated my 19th birthday with my coworkers in 2014 and the food there did not change since then, it was so delicious.
I showed my love the city from my perspective, my favorite places where I used to hang out for breakfast, my favorite lunch spot and most importantly I finally had a chance to meet my friend after all those years (she adjusts her busy schedule and finds time for us to have dinner and walk around the city).
I texted her 2 weeks before our arrival, she texted me back saying: “oh no it’s Friday and I am working that day, but I will try my best to meet you” (because you’re not coming to Beijing that often LOL). And she made it, I didn’t recognize her at first (in a good way). Later on, while having a dinner, I told her: “you’ve changed a lot since the last time I saw you, so business!” I knew that she works for a different company right now, but what I didn’t know is her position at that company. She is the director at one of the IT companies in China (like working in the Silicon Valley in America). I was like nooo way! I am so proud of you and all the hard work you did to be where you are right now. (Xindy, I know you probably reading this). I am happy, that during all those years we are keeping in touch with each other. Thanks to you! And thank you once again for finding time for us with your busy work schedule, we had fun! <3
My emotions that evening were overwhelming. One of the nostalgic times from now on!
I thank China for the people, I have met there; food, especially, the amounts of delicious eggplant I’ve eaten; and places I have had a chance to visit. Peace!
But… there is always but lol…Expect the unexpected.
After traveling to China in December (I always transited there to my hometown with no problems), I started hating the customs, securities, visas, and airports!
As you may know, Russian citizens(and 53 other countries, Canada included) transiting via Beijing Capital International Airport can apply for this free transit permit after arrival. So, if you’re planning on transiting in Beijing and taking advantage of 72-hour transit visa (I mean leaving the airport borders). Here are some of the things you need to expect in order to save yourself time (like 2-3 hours) and nerves, because the system changed since September 2017.
First of all, once you arrive, you don’t have to go to the customs straight ahead, look for a booth. There is a special booth for the 72-hour free transit, so passengers can go there directly by following the signs.Also, fill out the arrival card on the plane. Proceed to the booth and asked for the arrival paper*(fill out that paper as fast as you can lol) and prepare your onward ticket, because here the fun begins. You will wait in line, where one of the slowest people on earth filling out all the info on their computers about you!!! (like in Zootopia cartoon). We’ve been waiting in line to get a stamp like 2,5 hours (oh Karl). So, please do not go to customs, because they will send you to that booth in order to get a stamp.
*Moreover, if you’re planning to stay more than 24 hours, be ready to show them your printed hotel booking confirmation.(because if you don’t have one, they will force you to book a hotel room or they won’t let you go outside of the airport area, thanks to Chinese security system).
After the request to enjoy the 72-hour China is approved, the officer will stamp a stay permit on your passport. The duration of stay is written on the passport.
After that, you can safely proceed to customs lol.
Regardless all of those things, our trip was great. I was so happy to explore the Beijing once again even for that short period of time.
If you have any questions about Beijing, I would be happy to answer them. Here is the first post about Beijing, which I wrote last year. Plus the post from 2014(OMG)
Thank you for reading!
Have a great day, smile and follow my blog <3