China now a tale of two lifestyles for expats

Published:  24 Apr at 6 PM
Want to get involved? Become a Featured Expat and take our interview.
Become a Local Expert and contribute articles.
Get in touch today!
Tagged: China, Euro, Teach Abroad
Whilst China’s mega-cities are firm favourites with the majority of expats, the vast country’s smaller cites, towns and even rural areas are drawing adventurous foreigners looking for a new life.

China can be everything most expats will ever need, but the vast majority are living in the huge cities due to work reasons and, just maybe, nervousness about fitting into the real China away from the giant metropolises. Now that expatriation to China is finally becoming mainstream, increasing numbers of foreigners are heading out to its lesser known regions in rural or semi-rural provinces. In addition to the advantages of clear, or at least clearer, air, the real China with its amazing history and heritage can be seen and appreciated.

Unsurprisingly, China’s ‘Most Attractive Chinese Cities for Foreigners’ survey rated its first-tier cities as the most popular destinations for expats, but secondand third-tier smaller conurbations are creeping into the listings. Practical reasons for preferring life in the slightly slower lane include the fact that salaries for teachers are the same as in the huge cities, but the lifestyle is far cheaper as well as more comfortable. In rural areas, it’s possible to experience remnants of the ancient Chinese culture handed down over the last four millennia and still visible in the small towns dotted around the countryside.

It’s a more relaxed lifestyle and can be dramatically different from the rough and tumble of Chinese city life in that it feels like home to expats very soon after they’re arrived. There’s time to think, read, enjoy the countryside and even grow your own vegetables in an eco-friendly environment. It seems that, nowadays, environmental factors are featuring more strongly in expats’ choices of their preferred destinations.

Teaching English at universities and upper schools is a favourite for expats seeking to earn a living in China, with even smaller towns home to upper-level educational institutes. The top-tier cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou or Shenzhen may well be a hub for start-up tech businesses and other entrepreneurial dreams, but the real China gives an entirely different expat experience.
Like this news?

Comments » No published comments just yet for this article...

Feel free to have your say on this item. Go on... be the first!

Tell us Your Thoughts On This Piece:

Your Name *
Email * (not published, needs verification one time only)
  • Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • RSS feed
  • Facebook

Latest Headlines

News Links

News Archive