will close on Feb 27th.

Please save any personal content and exchange contact info with other members you?d like to stay in touch with. Thank you for your contributions to the VirtualTourist community.

"Phoning internationally and locally" China Favorite Tip by melosh

China General: 365 reviews and 336 photos

Favorite thing: If you are planning to use a cell phone to contact home you will want to buy a SIMS card in China for the international calls. It will be cheaper than using your regular outside the USA service. If you want your cell phone to function throughout China it is important that you buy a card that functions in all areas. Many cards sold serve only a limited area and therefore would prove useless when you travel out of this area.

An alternative for local calls is to use one of the many shop phones. Call boxes seem to be relatively rare, but you will find phones for hire for local calls at all sorts of shops on just about every street. Usually the phone will be visible from the street. I never found it difficult to make a local call even without any Chinese. I would just walk up to the phone and show the number I wanted to call. Whenever I showed any hesitancy in how to use the phone, the shop person would happily dial the number for me. The cost was never more than 1 RMB. I think it was usually 1/2 an RMB.

Another alternative for contact home is to use computer based phone systems. I actually have been able to regularly see my son who works in China by computer to computer connection.

Fondest memory: It is always a special moment when after you have arrived in a foreign country you hear the voice of someone you know. Honestly, I did not recognize my son's voice until he spoke to me in English.

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Was this review helpful?

  • Written Apr 19, 2008
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse



“If you have not been, you can not know.”

Online Now


Top 1,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 0 7 0 4
Forum Rank:
0 0 1 8 8

Have you been to China?

  Share Your Travels