China Survival Guide: How to Avoid Travel Troubles and Mortifying Mishaps

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Overview

This first-ever humorous travel guide on China both dishes the dirt on the myriad travel mishaps that may befall any unsuspecting tourist and explains how to avoid them! Possible danger zones debunked include airports, hotels, hospitals, taxis, and bathrooms. Readers will learn essential skills like how to haggle, exchange currencies, cross the street, decipher menus, say useful phrases in Chinese, and more. The guide comes complete with survival tips on etiquette, a map, and ...

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Overview

This first-ever humorous travel guide on China both dishes the dirt on the myriad travel mishaps that may befall any unsuspecting tourist and explains how to avoid them! Possible danger zones debunked include airports, hotels, hospitals, taxis, and bathrooms. Readers will learn essential skills like how to haggle, exchange currencies, cross the street, decipher menus, say useful phrases in Chinese, and more. The guide comes complete with survival tips on etiquette, a map, and resource lists. Don’t leave home for China without it!

Veteran travelers Qin and Larry Herzberg are Chinese language and culture professors at Calvin College in Michigan.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933330518
  • Publisher: Stone Bridge Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2008
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 4.50 (w) x 5.90 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Larry and Qin Herzberg are a married couple, and are both professors of Chinese language and culture at Calvin College in Michigan. They travel to China every year, both with students and without. Qin and Larry are a married couple, and are both professors of Chinese language and culture at Calvin College in Michigan. They travel to China every year, both with students and without.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 5, 2009

    A Must-read for any China-bound traveler!

    This guide to China is easy to read, entertaining, but most of all, extremely useful. It contains all sorts of information about and tips for navigating the everyday situations that a traveler will find themselves in such as standing in line, ordering at a restaurant, using taxis, traveling on trains, managing squatty potties, crossing the street, finding a hotel, navigating the crowds, going to a hospital, and most importantly, doing all these things in a polite and culturally acceptable way. It contains many amusing antidotes from the authors' travels which help prepare the Americans for what they will find odd about China and the Chinese, yet at the same time presents the warmth, generosity, and beauty of the Chinese people. This guide contains much information not found in the typical guidebook and is an absolute must for anyone traveling to China!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 5, 2009

    Sister Says Buy This Book!

    Go figure! How could two Jewish kids from suburban Chicago become so immersed in things Chinese?! I'm a qigong and yoga teacher in Florence, Oregon. My brother, an astoundingly talented professor of Chinese and Japanese languages, as well as a violinist with the Grand Rapids (MI) Symphony, found time in his busy schedule to knock off a book on China! His collaborator is his wife Qin, a Beijing native. Larry has taken many, many trips to China, some with Qin, most with student groups. From all the experience Larry and Qin have had comes this book, so that travelers can benefit from their guidance, much obtained through the school-of-hard-knocks ... in fact, the trip I went on with Larry is referenced three times, as we had so many misadventures from which a lot was learned! In fact, even if you never go to China, you'll have affirmed that whatever travails you're currently encountering, you're learning from them ... and you (or someone you know) may write about them in the future.
    How timely that this book has been published in time for the Olympics. Because China is such a popular tourist destination, many travel there all year 'round. A number of my students have purchased copies to give to friends traveling there. Its convenient size makes it easy to pack along. Even if you never go to China, the book will give you insight about this fascinating country, and it's fun to read, as my brother has a marvelous sense of humor (I even experienced his translated-into-Chinese Woody Allen stand-up routine for a bunch of Mongolians on Mt. Emei ... read more about THAT misadventure in the book!)
    While other books can give you information on regions and destinations, Larry and Qin's book tells you how to deal with everyday survival skills, such as finding clean drinking water, using toilets, purchasing goods, crossing the street (the last time Larry was in Shanghai, his foot was run over by a bicyclist trying to weave her way through automobile traffic ... learn from his misery and avoid it!)
    As a former MBA, I can tell you that, at $9.95, this book delivers a laudable Return on Investment!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 23, 2009

    Hilarious and useful!

    This book is an absolute gem. Everything a travel guide should be and more, it is informative, practical, readable, and hilariously funny. Penned by Larry Herzberg and his Chinese-born wife Qin, the reader benefits not only from the incredible experiences Larry has faced in his extensive travels but also Qin's first-hand wisdom and insight into Chinese culture. This book separates itself from other tour guides also in that it is so personal. While many guides read like a textbook, this book delights the reader with vivid, entertaining descriptions of real situations and tongue-in-cheek humor. The Herzbergs have a genuine passion for travel and for China--and their enthusiasm shines through and draws the reader in, story after story. They do a fantastic job of addressing problems and offering tips on how to deal with difficult situations without for a second being discouraging. This book is unabashedly honest in its discussion of Chinese culture and pitfalls for foreign tourists, and yet even in recalling ridiculous travel tales, the Herzbergs write with such fondness for the Chinese people that the reader cannot help but desire to experience China for himself.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 22, 2009

    Little Book, Lots of Help!

    This is a very useful little book that picks up where most sight-seeing guidebooks leave off. The section on customs is invaluable. We learn how to be polite (take and offer gifts and even business cards with both hands) , where to be assertive (those people aren't cutting ahead of you in line - there is no line!), and when to bargain (not my strong suit, but now at least I know to start at 20% of the suggested price).

    The section on the Chinese language is unusually comprehendible. The authors, who have taught Chinese for years, make basic communication surprisingly easy. This has become the book I send to China-bound friends who have no previous Chinese language experience.

    China Survival Guide contains lots of good information on a wide range of subjects. With the authors' personal (and often self-deprecating ) travel stories woven throughout, the book is a delightful way to get inside contemporary Chinese culture and equip ourselves for the variety of situations that we may encounter in our own travels.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    enlightening and entertaining

    I found this book very helpful. I believe it will benefit my trip to China this fall. The helpful hints and information are basic need to know before you go things.Well done and down to earth.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Good Quick read

    It is entertaining and iformative, but not up to date

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Fabulous!

    An extremely useful book for anyone planning to attend the Olympics this year. Humorous and honest; written by people who frequently travel to and love China!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2010

    Good starter

    I haven't read the book from cover to cover but for a first time traveler to China the info provided will be very useful.

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  • Posted September 21, 2009

    Must read if Traveling to China

    This was a great book for someone that just needed to know a few of the ins/outs of traveling to China. It not only had tons of information but did it in a creatively funny way from personal experiences. The first chapter on the Squata Potties starts the book off with a bang. If you are heading to that region of the world this is a quick read with lots of good information and insight.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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