Replies: 30 - Last Post: Jul 10, 2012 9:09 AM Last Post By: SoloHobo
Jul 5, 2012 8:04 AM
16Comparing Beijing and Shanghai and kind of like comparing New York and LA. NYC has an energy and is some of the most unique and brightest people you could ever come across, but the city is crowded and after a while can be a grind, LA is more a less a bunch of dreamers and wannabees, but living there in the wonderful weather and huge spread out areas to live is gorgeous, kind of the same for Beijing and Shanghai, I think the lifestyle and living enjoyment is nicer in Shanghai. Hong Kong is the best of both worlds...
Jul 5, 2012 8:27 AM
17As the above discussion indicates, this isn't a one-size-fits-all question.
Indeed, the first question shouldn't be about Beijing or Shanghai, it should be about you. Because the two cities appeal to very different types of expats, and the expat communities are resultingly very diffierent. Read the discussion above and decide which type of expat you are, and then choose correspondingly.
Jul 5, 2012 10:03 AM
Jul 6, 2012 3:00 AM
19Actually #19, most older and married people fit better in and prefer Beijing, not Shanghai. The young partiers (at least the males that have a good income) prefer Beijing. Your perception and comments are one of the few from your demographic that I've ever seen, that favor Shanghai.
Addressed to all (not #19!) There's a reason that Shanghai is considered a wasteland of cheating spouses and broken expat marriages, particularly for corporate execs assigned there. Make of this what you will. I guess it really does come down to the individual.
Fortunately for those who don't really like the city they are in, the Chinese government has thoughtfully provided bullet train service that can get you to the other city for a long weekend visit and at least temporary rejuvenation, in a hassle-free 4-5 hours.
Jul 6, 2012 3:11 AM
Jul 6, 2012 3:14 AM
Jul 6, 2012 3:23 AM
22Jiejie has some valid points.
One of the things annoying me (older, married) in Shanghai is the "lonely" girls and pimps who are approaching you all the time on Nanjing Lu. In Beijing, the (expat) prostitution markets (defined very broadly, including "small no. 3's") is visibly smaller. Furthermore, in Beijing, this market operates much more discrete. More heavily policed, I guess.
Jul 6, 2012 3:44 AM
23Ah, the Beijing vs Shanghai expat battle again! One more factor in Beijing's favor, the surrounding countryside. Beijing has mountains on three sides. This contributes to the bad air, but gives a lot of nice weekend destinations for those interested in hiking, skiing, or picnics. One hour on the road and you're in much better air, mountain valleys, remnants of the Wall, and no (or at least, much fewer) people. Two or three hours and you're in grasslands or forests.
Jul 6, 2012 4:34 AM
24The countryside around Shanghai is pretty impressive too, although after you've seen a quite a few gardens, bridges, & canal towns, they all start to look the same. Never did make it to Xitang or Mudu or Zhouzhuang. I did not even make it to central Shanghai! But I have been there before, & 2-3 days was enough. Had too much fun exploring Yangzhou, Qufu, Nanjing, Changzhou, Tongli, Suzhou, Wuzhen, Wuxi, Jinjiang et al. Plenty of tourist attractions in Jiangsu, Zhejiang & Shandong, that I simply did not have time for. Most expats have to work during the week!
As for cities, Beijing is far superior to Shanghai for tourists imho, and deserves a good, solid 5-7 days. Shanghai can be seen in a day or 2.
Jul 6, 2012 5:38 AM
25Well I guess if you want to hang out on Nanjing Lu for lonely girls then by all means you will get propositioned, though I was there all the time during the day and never had anyone (pimp or girls) approach me, even inside the popular sports bars. In Beijing I would get cards and flyers under our Apt Door...haha
But in the Santilun area, I was often approached in the few times I was up there, as well as the bars around workers stadium, how odd. Its not as if an expat/foreigner cant find out where the girls are at in either city, its no secret.
I think Shanghai is much prettier and liveable city than Beijing. Most people I know that have been to both for work agree. I was more connected in Beijing socially since it was my wifes hometown, and her work afforded us some great connections, but the pain of getting around in Beijing was a drag, and the air quality just sucks, I mean its really bad. Who wants to live in bad air? And the winter months were so drab and gray, its was like a depressing movie that would not stop.
But my industry is luxury retail, so all the players are in Shanghai, even though the top flagships were in Beijing/HK. As far as broken marriages and new money, I dont think there were any less of bad marriages among Chinese in one city of the other, they all had mistresses and a second or even third condo to put them up in, and lavish them with gifts. As far as Expats divorcing more in Shanghai than in Beijing, maybe the girls are prettier in Shanghai, they certainly dress better...haha
Jul 7, 2012 4:22 AM
Jul 7, 2012 5:05 AM
27if you want to hang out on Nanjing Lu for lonely girls then by all means you will get propositioned Well, I do not hang out on Nanjing Lu looking for company. Just walking down the street does the trick...
Anyway, I've only done it late afternoon, that probably makes a difference. I agree with Jiejie reg. winters. If you can stand the cold (and the occasional foul air), winters in Beijing (and Northern China) are actually lovely. Crappy heat is a feature shared by both cities - the period for that is just longer in Shanghai...
Jul 8, 2012 1:58 AM
Jul 10, 2012 8:54 AM
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