A lot of people – a lot of problems. Shanghai’s population is 23.9 million, which is quite insane even for our modern time and age. To have so many people concentrated in one place can be quite problematic, and China’s largest city is no stranger to that. If the road of life leads you to this intriguing place, you will surely know the true meaning of the world “survival.”
It may be a concrete jungle, but it’s still a jungle. Food, water, pollution, traffic…
These are all the things you constantly have to keep in mind in order to come out of Shanghai as more than a mere shell of a person you used to be.
To ease you pain, here are a few tips on how to be victorious and enjoy the time you spend there, because the ciy truly is a modern day wonder.
The people of Shanghai are really economical, to the least. Why would anyone want to pay for a professional shop or an ad when they can just bother you on the streets?
Fake taxi drivers with fake taxis (for the record the cars are real, they’re not imaginary, they’re just not real taxis), ambushing you on the airport, pushing you for driving you to your home or hotel, and along that selling you goods all “original” and for a “friendly price.” They sure don’t waste any time.
If you manage to get to your destination by a real taxi or a subway, consider yourself a Shanghai tourist God.
While on the subject of traffic, you are advised to drive a tank. If you, however, do not own a tank, prepare for the survival traffic rules in Shanghai 101. The first rule: survive. That is, also, the only rule. Try not to kill anyone or to get killed, watch out for both cars and bikes, because both can be equally dangerous. That’s what happens when no one pays attention to the little things in life, like traffic lights and priority rules and… stuff.
Another set of rules needed for your Shanghai experience survival is the set of rules for wining and dining. If you’re a fan of rice, noodles and green tea all day, every day, then great – you’re in for a treat! If not, well, prepare for numerous food poisonings. The reason for this is that the level of hygiene is really, really low. Don’t even think about street food vendors or tap water.
Also, people spit a lot right on the streets, parents let their babies go to the bathroom just about anywhere – polished granite floor and all, restaurant staff washes the dishes on the street side… Shanghai is a very interesting place, no doubt.