Frequently Asked Questions about Guangzhou

Expats considering a move to Guangzhou will naturally have many concerns about life in this Chinese city. From their personal safety and security to the transport system and being able to keep in touch with friends and family back home, here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about expat life in Guangzhou.

Is Guangzhou safe?

Guangzhou is generally safe. As in most large cities, certain parts of the city centre are more prone to crime. Expats should be extra careful around the train station district at night and should be especially wary of pickpocketing.

What language is spoken in Guangzhou?

Mandarin is the official language, but most local people speak Cantonese (Guangzhou was once called Canton City). Both languages use the same characters for reading and writing. English isn't as commonly spoken as in China's other large cities, like Beijing and Shanghai, but many professionals who deal with expats frequently will have some English ability.

Will I need a car in Guangzhou?

Taxis are fairly easy to catch and relatively cheap. Public transport does cover the whole city but can be uncomfortably crowded. Expats living outside of the city centre may need their own transportation.

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