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More Shanghai travel tips

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1) If you decide to stay at home inn (Rujia), book early (2 to 3 weeks in advance), here is the web site and their phone No. 800-820-3333. I booked through their web site. Note their web site is designed slightly different from some of the US travel web sites. Couple times I thought I already booked but the system did not think so. Make sure you get a confirmation email.

Home Inn front desk

2)  Get the money (RMB): the best way for me is bring the USD (or other hard currency). You can exchange it at the Pudong Development Bank at the Pudong airport (they waive the fee if you exchange more than $500). You can also exchange any amount at Bank of China without any fees. I also tried my Citibank ATM card at the ATM machine outside Citibank Branch at Marine Tower in Pudong, it still treated me as non-citi customer and charged 1% transaction fee. Later I found out I can do it at the Super Mall (Zheng Da Plaza) itself: I walked 15 minutes from the Marine Tower to Super Mall.

Don’t bring money order, or travellers check, as they can not be cashed immediately.

3) Maps: I found the dingding map to be handy. You can search places (e.g., 中国银行 bank of China), or get the bus transmit toute from point A to point B. It seems could not understand English very well, for instance, when I typed “bank of China”, I only got one 中国银行, the rest is all coffee places (maybe it thinks China and coffee are close?).

BTW, there are many web based maps in China, Wang Jianshuo has a short review at his blog. He also suggested there is no good maps in English language.

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