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10 Ways China is Different to the Western World

Ways China Is Different

Ways China Is Different | photo: Elaine Li

What is the first thing that comes to mind when somebody says China? Chopsticks, Jackie Chan, a terrible crowd?  Here’s how China is different to the Western World!


  • They use chopsticks when eating

China is different because you will only find chopsticks to eat with in restaurants. If you haven`t used chopsticks before, it’s going to be a funny meal for you. If Chinese people see you can`t use chopsticks, they start laughing. ? But don’t worry if you can’t master the art of using chopsticks, you can buy forks and carry it around with you wherever you go.


  • When you go to a cafe or restaurant, the first thing that comes before the menu is a glass of hot water.

It doesn’t matter whether it is summer or winter! They drink hot water even when it is 40 degrees outside. This is because according to Chinese people; hot water is one of the most important things for human health.


Ways China is different

photo: Vivien Lui


  • Chinese people always have thermos in their bag.

Wherever you go in China, you will surely see a thermos beside everyone. There is either hot water or herbal tea in the thermos. I have never seen a nation that cares about their health as much as Chinese people!


  • No matter what time, you can see older Chinese people doing taijiquan or dancing in open areas.

Okay, but what is taijiquan? Taijiquan is a Chinese exercise, also called Chinese yoga. Taijiquan is system of physical movements that emphasizes; balance, coordination, and effortlessness.  It is designed for attaining physical and mental well-being, as well as an art of self-defence. What about dance? They usually dance with a group of friends in the park. It is amazing! Foreign people watch them with admiration every time.


  • The cafes in the university are usually used for studying purposes.

As you know, China is a very crowded country. Sometimes you can’t find a place in the library even outside of university exam periods. Because of this, most students prefer to study in the university’s cafe. The cafe environment turns into a library. If you make a loud noise, you can be exposed to bad glances.

Ways China Is Different

photo: Vivien Lui


  • The most common means of transportation are public bicycles.

You can easily find public bicycles in every street in China. All you need to do is download the application and become a member. You can use these bikes at any time of the day for a very small fee. You can leave the bike anywhere you go. It is so convenient!


  • You don’t need to carry cash in China.

In China, there is a platform called Alipay. Alipay is very similar to PayPal, it was established as a rival to Paypal to enable citizens to shop safely in an electronic environment. Alipay users have a unique QR code which allows them to pay for things. You can use this QR code to make payments at the grocery store, at shopping centres, or even in a taxi.


  • Unlike Bars, Chinese people like to go KTV.

What is KTV?  KTV is a karaoke bar. A karaoke bar where young people come together and sing together (or individually) in private rooms. You can eat, drink alcohol and sing your favourite songs in turn. Of course, they have an age limit of 18 at  every bar.

Ways China Is Different

photo: Edward KB

  • Chinese people don’t use social media as much as western countries.

China is different to the rest of of the world when it comes to social media usage. Most social media platforms are forbidden. I mean, of course they use their own social media network; but Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, WhatsApp, and Pinterest are some of the social network sites that are forbidden in China. If you use VPN, you can easily access these networks. However, the Chinese are not accustomed to using such social media networks so they don’t feel the absence of them. I can’t even think of living without social media for a day!


  • Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Beijing have different dialects and they can`t understand each other.

Of course, every country has many dialects, but at least we can understand each other somehow – Chinese people can’t. This is due to the fact they speak a totally different Chinese language. These three cities have different Chinese languages. It is weird, right?





Written by Didem





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