move to Zhuhai advice
I am currently studying in scotland so that I can teach english abroad and wish to move to Zhuhai with my fiance once I have a job. therefore I am looking for advice about which area is best to live in. any advice would be greatly appreciated.
do you know where you are going to work?
The best is of course to live near or in close proximity to your work.
We live in Jida district and everything we need we can find here or in a nearby district. Though this term my husband is starting a new job and will be commuting longer time to work but since we have a small child it is more convenient for us to continue staying in this district.
I would research who you want to work with first and work backwards! Depending on your teaching qualification you could work in one of the International schools - these are in set areas. Then there are Chinese state schools and kindergardens who may need teachers who do not have the a the UK or equivalent teaching degree but hold a TEFL qualification and finally the smaller private English learning schools who may not require a TEFL qualification just a native English speaker - both state and private schools are dotted all over the place so you can live wherever you like! Do you want to be close to the school, night life, Macau, Hong Kong, the ferry port etc!
Also it depends on what you want to get out of Zhuhai after you finish teaching each day? Many of the private schools want teachers at night/weekends (when their students finish work or state school) so your weekends and evenings are limited! A lot of people I knew who went to University to study Chinese and supported themselves by teaching English. That was in Suzhou though and there is no University course in Zhuhai that allows you to learn intensive Chinese. (Many private schools do though) I managed teaching for a month and I finished work at around 9PM each night then went straight home as I had a husband to look after!!
We live in XiangZhou, Nanping district which is perfect if you work there or close to DouMen, but night life there is not much to do. GongBei seems to be the most lively area to live and is V close to the Macau boarder and the Ferry port to Shenzhen/Hong Kong.
A fellow Scot? Or are you just studying in Scotland? Anyway, when you get the job, any decent employer should provide you with an apartment, and give you the option of finding your own should you want it. It's usually easier to take the first option to start with, unless your Chinese is unusually good. Once you settle in to the job and the city you can find a place of your own.
Zhuhai is a fantastic place to live. The biggest difficulty for me so far has been the heat! I'm not complaining mind, starting to get used to it now. Give us a shout when you get here if you and your man want a wee tour of the place. Oh, and if you want any help finding a job let me know, I can give you some contact details for local schools.
Sorry Nikki for hijacking your thread. I thought it might be better to post here than start a new one.
My partner and I are looking to move (part-time) to Zhuhai next year. We currently live in central China and the conditions here are pretty awful, especially pollution wise.
The company I am a partner in is expanding relatively quickly and as such I am taking on a new role that will require me to spend more time back in Australia. At the same time, it will no longer be necessary for me to reside close to our company manufacturing base up here. We are involved in coal mining machinery so I have had to spend most of my time (in China) in areas with the largest and highest concentrations of coal mines. You can all probably imagine what that is like. It is certainly not my idea of an ideal environment to raise children.
I am Australian and my partner is from Eastern Guangdong. I have been in China since 2004, so though I am by no means an expert, I do know a few things about getting by in the Middle Kingdom.
What we are looking to do is rent for a year to make sure Zhuhai is where we want to settle down, before buying. We have both been to Zhuhai on numerous occasions but only for short visits.
We are getting married next year and plan to have children in the next few years. Information we are looking for is:
Recommendations as to what areas to, firstly, rent an apartment. It would be great to find an area that has a few expats. Something with a view of the ocean would be great. I miss home a bit.
Being that we already own property in China, are there any restrictions on ownership of other properties in Zhuhai, that anyone knows of?
Also, we’ll be staying in Zhuhai for a few weeks over the Christmas period to have a more detailed look around before renting. Would anyone be able to offer advice as to places we might go to meet expats so as to get to know a few people on the ground? I have read most of the reviews of restaurants and will keep watching the events section of this website, but other tips would be greatly appreciated as well.
Thank you kindly,
Double Post, sorry.
Hi! Welcome :-)
Here are few things, you might want to look around the forum in previous pages - there is a lot of information posted on where people live and their preferences.
1. If you are a foreigner in China, you can only own 1 housing property. I am not sure about Chinese, but I think more than one. The only thing is that if you get married and your husband's hukou if not from Zhuhai, you have to go back there to get married and collect necessary documents and have the legal registration done (which you probably will anyway if his family lives there).
2. During Christmas holidays a lot of expats leave the city. We don't go out much so I wouldn't know much, but I hear Danny's bar, La Bohemia and the Office (was it?), along with Fusion Grill & Bar have more changes of foreigners hanging out there. There is a big "concentration" of foreigners in Huafa New Town as well (the housing area). Check also the directory for foreign owned bars and restaurants.
3. If you want to live in a house with a view to the sea, you can try some apartments in Jida (near the port, Shui Wan Tou area, Old Xiangzhou - behind Jusco, or close to Gongbei). I don't have a particular property name in mind but someone here with a nickname Flora may give you a bit more insight as she lives close to Gongbei, by the sea.
I am sure others will have some more advice. Welcome to ask more questions!
Hi, I have got some great info from this site. I may be taking a headship in Zhuhai. I have read a lot of useful information for married couples or single men. I am 50 (female) and would like to know if there are older people in the area who may be expats (although I am hoping to make chinese friends If I come). It seems a lovely place and I'm impressed with what I have read today. Is the area safe? I seem to see problms with vegetables, why arethey hard to come by? How well can you live on say $800 a month (I am trying to save) Any information would be great. Thanks
Hi, yes, there are. I have a number of close friends in their 50s and 60s. Two of them are wonderful single women and another couple who have been here for more than 10 years.
800$ a month is almost what we spend as a family on rent, bills, food and transportation (we are 3, 1 is a toddler, in our case it is more like 900-1000). So whether your school provides accommodation or not it is possible to live on 800$ a month or even less. I can't say Zhuhai is very very cheap but if you cook at home and use bus as transportation with occasional taxi rides, you can save a lot of money. It is all the matter of your own budget and once you get here and get familiar with places and prices you'll figure out everything.
There isn't problems with vegetables. There is even an option of organic markets but those are quite far away from downtown. You can find pretty much all basic vegetables and in the markets they bring them fresh every day. You also have a choice of different vegetable oils.
Yes, the place is very safe. It is very rare that someone gets attacked, especially foreigners. But of course there are cases of pickpocketing and such - you just have to be on guard with your property.
Thanks cheekygal. Appreciated. I'm a bloke, though. :)
Also, I drive so being a little bit away from downtown is probably a bonus rather than an annoyance.
Thanks Cheekgal, that was a great help. I really like the sound of the place. There seems bit going on, but not too much. I'm glad its not too expensive. What about household goods, are they expensive, and electrical items too? I have been told to nip over to HK if I want anything cheap. Is that the case generally about most products or can I find things there?
Ops lol Well, change it to "wife's" ;-)))
Actually, downtown here is not so bad. The busiest districts are Gongbei and Old Xiangzhou. Jida (even though quite central) is somehow not SO busy. Of course if you live in Nanping (where Huafa is) or Tanjia (where Horizon Cove and Sunny Melody - other favoured by foreigners gardens are) it will be convenient for you as well :-)
Can someone tell me what the pharmacies are like in Zhuhai? For example, can you get good quality tablets for migraines? I have tried Chinese medicine, but at times of urgency, I just want rid of a headache. Can anyone also tell me what the weather is like? Is it very humid? I am visiting Sudan at the moment, and I couldn't imagine it to be this bad. I get the feeling the place has quite a small community, is it like this? Is it heavily populated? Are the streets very packed? I have looked at hundreds of pictures, but its really hard to get a real, clear view of the place. Thanks in advance
If you are thinking some prescription medicine, perhaps it is best if you bring a supply with you. If it is OTC, you can try finding here otherwise go to Macau or HK for more. In the former case you can also visit doctors in Macau to get prescription medicine. Such medicine as paracetamol based or ibuprofen based are available here but something stronger - I am honestly not sure.
Humidity level here can get pretty high, up to 98-99%. At the moment I think it is between 70 and 80%. It goes down in winter (with the lowest temperature +7...9 at night. On a rare occasion it goes below 7; during the day the lowest is +10...11).
As for the population, I am not sure what you are comparing with. There is a bit over 1mln people living here and it is considered not much in China. Streets are not packed on a regular day (like, there are people but not too many to get pushed around) but some areas, like by the border with Macau, gets crowded on the weekends and during the holidays. Recently the traffic has been much thicker as more people have cars. Also around dinner time, at the end of the work day (between 5 and 7pm) there are many people at the bus stops cause they are all either going home or for dinner somewhere.
You know, every place has its pluses and minuses. You won't know 100% unless you are here. If your heart is set for this place then you'll definitely find a way to make your life here comfortable despite certain little things. If not - then you will only be able to see the negative little things instead of noticing that there is a lot of good things (safety, per se, respect for foreigners, especially teachers, people are quite helpful - even though they might seem strange sometimes with their giggling and repeating English words or your broken Chinese words after you; life is relatively cheap, transportation is convenient etc).
I hope people give you more insight as I am just one person giving you my personal opinion :o)
You are always welcome to ask more!
Thanks cheeky gal, you give a very balanced view of the place which is exactly what I am looking for. Yes, of course, there will always be pluses and minuses, and it is striking a balance. I was thinking of Downtown Cairo or say Accra in Ghana, but from what you have said, it isn't anywhere near as bad. I really try to get as much info as possible before I arrive and I am still shocked at the settling in period, but I can't imagine not knowing anything! You obviously know a lot about the area. Are you English? I have never known so many contrasting views of a country as much as China. Perhaps its because it is so big. The school seems nice but I know so little about it because its a private chinese girls school, so limited information. Thanks so much, its really appreciated:)
No, I am not English ;o) You are welcome. Glad to help. And, yes, Zhuhai is much better than some of the big cities in Africa (at least much better than Addis-Ababa, Douala or Dar-es-Salam). China is VERY different from any African country.
My experience and knowledge come from different sources and communication with large number of local friends. We also travel everywhere by bus so I take notice of places we see. Whatever knowledge I have, I'm glad to share. Though I am sometimes also wrong about some things hehehe So hope, once again, this information is helpful in your decision-making process.
Thanks Cheekygal, thats really helpful. I am liking the idea more and more, but just worry about the extreme views on China. I imagine it to be quite a challenge being there. I intend to discuss this in my interview tomorrow. I do need more informationa about the school, but its so hard! I am really keen to know about accommodation. I will be housed, but if possible, I would like to know about the cost of a decent 2 bedroom apartment in a quiet area which is fairly modern. I have looked on the accommodation forum, but they seem quite expensive. Do you have a rough idea? Is accommodation expensive generally and comparatively to the West? Thanks again for your help, its really appreciated.
Um. It depends where you will be located. I can't find the exact location of the school yet. A 2 bedroom apartment could be between 1500-3000 or more (RMB, roughly 250-350 USD) a month depending on where you are. My personal advice is to talk to school about this first and ask what accommodation they offer, and perhaps send you some pictures. Insist that the apartment must have a western toilet, not eastern. I think generally apartments are decent but the kitchens are often very small. Bathrooms usually have no bathtubs (unless these are the new modern apartments), just a shower and a drain in the floor (actually it doesn't sound so bad - it's easy to keep the bathroom mould free in this climate!). Some apartments have an AC unit only in the bedroom/s but not in the living room - that's because a lot of local people don't like using ACs so much.
In our garden apartments are on a cheaper side as it is one of the oldest gardens in Zhuhai. And we got extremely lucky with ours - our rent is relatively low and the landlord is quite nice (I hope they don't decide to raise the rent with the new contract we are going to sign!!!).
Note: accommodation forums in English usually cite higher priced property (not always, but usually).
Does anyone know anything about Hai Wan Ya Yuan (海湾雅苑) as far as a place to live goes? Anyone know if there is a real estate agent that handles rentals for the complex? Cheers.
I personally don't know the place but pretty much any agency around it would be able to handle the property. You can also go directly to their management and ask whether they have any apartments for rent.
I don’t want to be one of those forumites that comes in and asks a few questions and then disappears, never to be heard of again. Firstly, thanks to those people kind enough to respond to my previous posts.
We ended up driving down from Shanxi (where I was doing some work at the time) in one day, 1760kms. We won’t be doing it again and would not recommend it to my worst enemy. Some of the driving I saw, coming down the range into Guangdong in particular, including a fatal accident, still leaves me shaking at the thought of it.
We ended up renting at Hai Bin Hua Yuan. Great view from a high floor and we got a really good deal from the landlord on a two year contract. The beach is pretty cool out the front and it is just a short walk to a heated pool at the Art Hotel. Only drawback is the noise from the helipad at some times of the day, but it doesn’t worry me too much with the windows closed.
Importantly, we have a pretty large balcony, so a few questions related to that! BBQs! Is there somewhere in Zhuhai to buy a large gas BBQ or is it best to go to Shenzhen? I’m not too concerned about the price, rates up there with potable water on my priorities list. And, meat, pretty limited range for BBQable (new word?) stuff at Carrefour, is there a better option? Anything like the butcher’s shops we have back in Australia?
Finally, fishing clubs or the like, do they exist? I know it isn’t exactly the Great Barrier Reef, but it does look like there might be a few places out there where one might be able to catch something edible.
As always, any information for a newbie will be greatly appreciated and hopefully I can return the favour one day, in the unlikely event that someone happens to ask about a topic I actually know something about.
Let me put my 2 cents seeing how nobody else is. I have lived in over 20 locations in China. Zhuhai is extremely underpopulated. Lots of parks, no people. Although the border crossing is busy, it doesn't hinder business. Since arriving, leaving and coming back to Zhuhai I can now see there is a rift. Thank you all for keeping it private and sending me personal messages. Yes, Zhuhai was the little known secret here, but actually, for a foreigner it doesn't offer that much compared to any other cities. If you want a city with a faster pace and ALL the amenities ... Xiamen would be the city. Zhuhai is laid back and slow paced in comparison to most. Prices are slightly higher, but not even worth mentioning. Unfortunately for all the influx has started. You will see a lot of other people from different countries arriving over the next 12 months. It is due to many factors, but mostly the new connection with Guangzhou and other growing cities. I did try to warn you it would not last forever. See ya around.
Hi Turtle! Haibin Huayuan is a great place. Our friend lived there for a while. It has indeed a fantastic view if you are on the higher floors and it is in close proximity to many things.
For BBQ grill I would recommend shopping on taobao or if you are ok with that - Shenzhen is better. There are some things you can find in Jusco, Carrefour and De Yi, perhaps Vanguard.
For fresh meat it is best to go to the local green market. You should try and ask your landlord where the nearest one is. I know there is one popular in Jida called Jida Shi Cheng (it is close to Jida bus stop, walking towards Happy Tom and big agricultural bank of china building). They have fresh meat and fish.
If you want already marinated meat, you can find some selection in De Yi (which is on the ground floor in the same malls as Carrefour, near McD). They have a section of meat for BBQ - it is widely popular. People buy their own stuff and then rent a small space in the parks and have their BBQ there.
I heard Vanguard in Gongbei has a good selection of meat but never bought anything there besides some simple groceries.
Not sure about fishing. In Zhuhai itself fishing could be just for fun (around Zhuhai the water is just too dirty). If you really want something serious, you might want to go to one of the islands. Again, need to ask locals here. I remember someone already asking about fishing and finishing gear on this forum but I don't remember actually anyone replying to that. But for sure you won't get fishing anywhere the same as in Oz.
Hope my comment was somewhat helpful.
Thanks heaps Cheekygal! I'll head out tomorrow and try to find Deyi.
A friend in Beijing recommended Villa Lifestyles for a BBQ and online it says they have a showroom in Shekou, so I'll try that before heading down the Taobao route. We buy heaps of stuff from Taobao but the BBQ is a pretty important addition so I would like to see it in real life before buying. If I don't have much luck I'll be in Beijing in a few weeks anyway, where my mate bought his.
Yeah, water here isn't real flash and I guess it is mostly smaller estuary fish in close, so the outer islands might be a chance. I'll keep looking. Each day I see the fishing boats going out and returning, must be something out there to catch.