Using Guides in China

If you are on a group or private guided tour you see China at its best.  Guides add so much to a tour and often point out things that you wouldn’t see just passing by.  An English speaking guide although they may speak excellent English must still deal with the many accents of English as well as tourists that English is a second language.  Be patient and speak slowly using common words and NO SLANG which is most common to us in the U.S.  It is impolite to ask a tourist to repeat a question that is difficult to understand.  The coastal major cities it is not much of a problem but once you to into the interior it can be a bit more difficult.  Culture dictates that it is impolite to ask for something that is not possible.  A guide normally either tries to avoid answering the question or gives a vague answer to save face.  That usually means NO.  A Guide needs to give a positive response to questions so if what you ask is not possible, you will often again get a vague answer.  One couple wanted to visit Beijing University since it was on the way to the Summer Palace.  It requires a permit to visit which must be obtained in advance.  The guide not wanting     (continue below the photos)Group-LectureIn-S.F.0002Guide-and-Driverto give a negative answer, said she would see if it was possible on the way back to the city.  The guide knew that the time was too short so that she wouldn’t have to say No to them that it couldn’t be done.  This is Chinese Culture one example.  I have a book available called “Encountering the Chinese”  A Modern Country; An Ancient Culture.  It is required reading for college students who will be visiting China and need to know more about interacting with the Chinese people.  It is difficult to find so I have  copies available at $24.95  post paid.  If you would like a copy made out to Interlake China Tours and send it to Interlake China Tours, Inc.  P.O. Box 33652  Seattle, WA. 98133 along with your request.