Home Forums Arriving In China + @the school + Accommodations What should I expect the first week in China?

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    Usually the first few days in China are quite busy.
    The schedule may change slightly but most teachers will go through the following steps together with our English speaking Chinese support staff.

    1. Airport Pick up and bring you to your hotel
    2. Look at/choosing an apartment (You need an address so that you can get your bank account, wifi, and get your residency permit)
    3. Shopping for your apartment
    4. Taking you to get a SIM card/wifi
    5. Medical check
    6. Bringing you to the government offices for registering for your residency permit

    Ideally you are able to get that done in the first 2 days, followed by days of training.  (click for video on training)

    Usually we will also all get together for dinner meals, shopping, hiking or seeing the local sites.  All of the staff and teachers are also very welcoming and able to make sure you get settled well.

    The first week is usually fast paced with a lot of running around. (click for video on scheduling).

    NOTE: In China it is always good to remember that most problems happen through lack of communication.

    A few problems teachers have had during the first week:

    -Two teachers went shopping but did not buy their sheets and bedding (they were not sure of the exact size of the bed but did not say anything). Come 10pm when we are all out walking around a lake having a good time, we asked if they were set up well for the night for their apartments and found out they had no bedding.  This situation did not seem to bother these teacher too much but luckily a few teachers with extra bedding pitched in to help and make sure they could have a good night sleep in their new apartments.

    -Day two after arrival a couple of the teachers were too shy and did not say anything and everyone was busy running around (and assumed they ate), so we found out the next day that these teachers did not eat anything all day.

    -One teacher took over the apartment from another teacher (usually that is a very good situation including no one-month real estate fee, no need for three months payment in advance and usually you get a lot of free stuff), BUT..in this case the last foreign teacher did not clean the place well, left the place in a horrible condition and the teacher was quite upset.  The teacher was asked how everything was and they said “everything is great”, so no one thought anything of it until later she expressed her feelings.

    We try to remind all staff to ask more, but it is good to remember to communicate well. Especially with Chinese people if you say nothing, or say that everything is great, then it is hard for them to know how you are feeling or for people to help you.  Of course it is good to use tact and be polite. For example, mentioning nicely that you need the size of the bed, that you really want to choose another apartment (or about having a cleaner come in), or that you would really like to eat something.

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