Dangers & Annoyances
The roads in western Sìchuān are infamously bad, but many sections have been resurfaced in recent years and as a result travel times have been cut drastically. The occasional tumbled vehicle at the bottom of steep drops still attests to the danger of these highways, however, and with road work still ongoing in some areas it's not all smooth driving.
Internet cafes are available throughout Garzi Prefecture, and wi-fi is common in the many teahouses that serve as the social hubs of each town. However, in the event of unrest in the region the government has been known to shut down internet access completely, leaving local SIM cards as the only means of contact with the outside world.
At the time of research it was impossible to change money or travellers cheques, get advances on credit cards or use ATMs with foreign bank cards anywhere in western Sìchuān apart from Kāngdìng. Larger towns such as Xīndūqiáo and Gānzī have a branch of the Agricultural Bank of China that theoretically accept foreign cards but in others, despite the Visa signs, expect rejection.