A question that many travelers ask is, "Why do I need a tour guide?" Especially with all of the online tools and map applications, you could just design your own tour and enjoy the sites. That's true for some travelers, especially if you're on a super tight budget. But here are five reasons a tour guide may be a good idea in China.
- The language barrier - The most obvious reason to use a guide is that we speak Chinese! This will help you get around around easily, talk with people, read signs and you can even learn some Chinese.
- Secret sites - Ok. There are not really "secret sites" in Shanghai, but there are many very interesting places, restaurants and activities that only tour guides know about. Especially if you have unique interests, such as do you want to see an historic European home? A post-cultural revolution schoolhouse? A unique, local toy store? The best place to buy low cost pearls? We can help.
- Efficiency - It takes time to find things when you're not familiar with the area, especially when many signs are in Chinese and maps are not complete. You can usually see twice as many things with a guide than without one.
- Saves money - You may be paying a bit to have a guide, but an experienced guide knows the best places to shop and eat without paying the "tourist taxes" that many places charge in the most visited areas.
- Real culture - Even though you may be seeing popular spots, a tour guide can give you the insider's scoop on everything from politics to daily living. They often will take you authentic homes or other local places where you can see how the real Chinese live.
- See what YOU want to see - With a private guide, you can create a custom itinerary that's perfect for you! We have had customers focus on history, modern Shanghai, Jewish sites, coin shops, silk shopping or just daily living. Everyone is different. We love meeting specific interests because you love it.
These are just a few of the reasons to use a tour guide! We hope to see you in Shanghai soon. If you'd like to get a quote, book a tour or just learn more about us, contact us. While we love comments, we don't see these fast enough to respond to you quicklyl!