UF in SWUFE, Chengdu Program

Student Handbook

 

 

 

 

                                                                                  SWUFE campus        

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

UF in SWUFE, Chengdu

 

University of Florida

Chengdu Center for International Studies

 

 

 

Please read the enclosed information before you leave and keep it with you for further consultation. If you have other specific questions, you can address them to the UF in Chengdu Office

 or Coordinators at any time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UFIC Study Abroad Advisor

Kirsten Eller

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Table of Contents

 

1     BEFORE DEPARTURE. 4

1.1      Passport and visa. 4

1.2      Flights 4

1.3      Money. 6

1.4      What to Pack. 7

1.4.1       In your carry-on. 7

1.4.2       In your suitcase: 7

1.5      Clothing. 8

1.6      Toiletries 9

1.7      Film and camera supplies 9

2     ARRIVAL. 11

2.1      Arriving at Chengdu International Airport (CTU) 11

2.2      Overcoming jet lag. 12

2.3      Orientation. 12

2.4      Food and Drink. 12

2.5      Local customs and regulations 13

2.6      Visa extensions and changes 14

2.7      Registration with the U.S. Embassy. 15

3     ON CAMPUS. 15

3.1      Dorm life. 15

3.2      Internet and landline. 16

3.3      Cell phone. 16

3.4      Classes 17

3.5      Meals 17

3.6      Shopping. 18

4     SIGHTSEEING AND TRAVEL. 19

4.1      Sightseeing schedule. 19

4.2      Traveling around Chengdu. 23

4.3      By bike. 24

4.4      Taking taxis 24

4.5      Using public transportation. 24

4.6      Other tourist attractions 26

4.7      Sites in Chengdu. 26

4.8      Sites near Chengdu. 27

5     CELL PHONE INSTRUCTIONS. 28

6     FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS. 32

7     SAFETY SUMMARY SHEET. 34

8     CONTACT INFORMATION.. 35

 


1          BEFORE DEPARTURE

1.1      Passport and visa

REMEMBER: Make photocopies of your passport, visa and traveler’s check receipt, and keep them in secure places.

 

You must have a passport that will remain valid throughout the duration of your time overseas. If you do not have a passport, you must apply for one immediately at the university or downtown post offices in Gainesville. In addition, Chinese visas are mandatory for all students and visitors. UFIC will assist you with your visa application, beginning with the SWUFE Application Form. We normally send visas through Best Visa Service, a visa processing agency based at the Houston Consulate (www.bestvisaservice.com). You are responsible for any application costs as well as for submitting the completed visa application to us in its entirety.

 

Prior to leaving the U.S., you must submit a copy of your passport and flight itinerary to UFIC. UFIC will keep both on file in case they are needed while you are abroad. We also encourage you to take a second passport copy with you overseas. You should keep this copy in a separate secured location from your original passport.

 

Whenever you stay at a hotel in China, you will be required to present your passport for identification. Further information on traveling through China can be found in the “Off-Campus: Travel” section of this handbook.

 

 

1.2      Flights

REMEMBER: Upon purchasing your tickets, you must send the following information to the SWUFE. Please send an email in the format below at zhangzh@swufe.edu.cn;

 

=============

Subject: Flight to Chengdu China – [YOUR NAME]

l  Carrier:

l  Flight Number:

l  Date of Arrival in Chengdu:

l  Time of Arrival in Chengdu:

 

Subject: Flight Back to USA – [YOUR NAME]

l  Carrier:

l  Flight Number:

l  Date of Departure from Chengdu/Shanghai:

l  Time of Departure from Chengdu/Shanghai:

l  Time you plan on leaving SWUFE campus:  (Usually at least 3.5 hours prior to your departure time.)

 

By now, you should have already purchased your tickets to Chengdu. Your arrival and departure dates must correspond with the dates for SWUEF semester. UF in Chengdu staff will provide pick-up for all students only on the dates they have already received. It is difficult, if not impossible, to make any changes to an international air ticket once it has been purchased.

 

If you plan on an early arrival or a late departure, you must notify the UF in Chengdu staff immediately so that we can coordinate your airport pick-up and dorm reservations appropriately.

 

 

a.      Pre-departure health care

UFIC suggests that students in China follow U.S. Center for Disease Control recommendations for travel immunizations and medications. Please make an appointment with your health care practitioner or one of the two UF Travel Clinics at least 6-8 weeks prior to departure to ensure that you have enough time to complete your immunizations.

 

The contact information for the two UF Travel Clinics is as follows:

 

Travel Clinic

Infirmary Building

1 Fletcher Drive

+1(352) 392-1161 x1-4312

 

Travel Clinic

SHCC @ Shands

Room D2-49 Dental Tower

Health Sciences

+1(352)392-0627

 

Please visit the CDC website for the most up-to-date information regarding travel to China at http://www.cdc.gov/travel/eastasia.htm.

 

If you are on any prescription medicines, you must ensure that you will have enough medication to last you throughout your time overseas. You will need to bring with you into China a doctor’s note explaining the amount and purpose of your medication.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.3      Money

REMEMBER: Leave unnecessary and/or valuable items at home whenever you are out of the dorms. This may include your driver’s license, social security card, library card, student ID, irreplaceable pictures, and anything else you would not to lose. If you do not plan on shopping, leave your credit card and all except some spending cash locked in your suitcase in your locked dorm room.

 

Please make sure to copy of your credit card numbers and of the contact information located on the back of the cards, in case they are lost or stolen. You must contact your credit card companies and banks with the dates and location of your study abroad program so that you can use your cards while in China.

 

We recommend you bring a small amount of dollars and perhaps Chinese currency with you to China. The Chinese currency is the RenMinBi (RMB). The symbol for RMB is , and the unit is the Yuan. The exchange rate is currently approximately RMB 7.0 to 1 US Dollar, although the Yuan has gradually been strengthening against the dollar. To determine how much something costs in dollars, divide the amount by the exchange rate you received, i.e. RMB50.00 divided by the exchange rate of 7.0 is US$7.14.

 

There is a bank branch at the Chengdu Airport where you can exchange money; plan on exchanging a small amount of money into Yuan when you arrive at the airport. You may be required to present your passport and visa for financial transactions at Chinese bank branches.

 

Never put money in your suitcase or luggage.  UFIC encourages you to buy a money pouch to keep under your clothes for your valuables.

 

SWUFE campus

 

 

1.4      What to Pack

1.4.1          In your carry-on

You should bring the following items to Chengdu in your carry-on luggage. Do not put them in your checked suitcase:

 

1)      Passport and all visa/SWUFE supporting documents.

a.       Original visa application.

b.      SWUFE acceptance letter.

2)      Flight itinerary and receipt.

3)      Prescription medicines along with a doctor’s note.

Please note that many airlines may not permit you to board with liquid medicines. You must check with your individual airline and departure airport if you will be traveling with any medicine in a liquid form.

4)      A small amount of U.S. and Chinese currency. You can exchange money easily upon arrival at Chengdu International Airport.

5)      $100 cash deposit for your cell phone.

6)      Credit cards.

7)      Laptop computer that can be used in your dorm room.

8)  Other valuables including cameras, DVD players, cell phones, etc.

                        DO NOT PACK ANY VALUABLES IN YOUR CHECKED SUITCASE.

 

 

1.4.2          In your suitcase:

REMEMBER: You have to carry whatever you bring! You might want a backpack or small carry-on suitcase with wheels for your weekend travels. Remember to allow room in your suitcase for items you acquire while overseas.

 

1.5      Clothing

 

If you are participating in the fall or spring semester programs, you will at some point experience cold weather in China. Winter is traditionally cold and moist, so you will need to bring winter clothes, including a wool sweater, winter jacket, etc. During the fall and spring, lighter clothes usually suffice. Please refer to the table of Climatological Information for Chengdu below.

 

 

Climatological Information for Chengdu, China

 

Location of weather station : 30.7 N, 104.0 E, altitude : 506 m

 

blank space

blank space
Data
Period

blank space
Jan

blank space
Feb

blank space
Mar

blank space
Apr

blank space
May

blank space
Jun

blank space
Jul

blank space
Aug

blank space
Sep

blank space
Oct

blank space
Nov

blank space
Dec

Mean Maximum
Temperature
(deg. C)

1961-1990

9.5

11.1

16.2

21.6

26.0

27.8

29.6

29.7

25.1

20.6

15.6

10.8

Mean Temperature
(deg. C)

1961-1990

5.5

7.2

11.6

16.5

21.0

23.5

25.2

24.9

21.0

16.9

11.8

7.1

Mean Minimum
Temperature
(deg. C)

1961-1990

2.4

4.2

8.1

12.7

17.2

20.2

22.0

21.6

18.4

14.5

9.2

4.2

Rainfall Amount (mm)

1961-1990

7.3

10.3

20.5

46.6

87.1

102.8

230.5

223.7

131.5

39.4

16.5

5.0

Days with Rain*

1961-1990

2.5

3.5

5.8

7.8

9.7

10.4

13.1

12.0

11.7

7.8

3.9

1.4

Mean Daily Sunshine
Duration
(hours)

1961-1990

2.2

2.1

3.1

3.8

4.2

4.3

4.8

5.3

2.7

2.1

2.0

1.9

* denotes number of days with at least 1.0 mm of rainfall

 

 

People in Asia usually dress more modestly than those in Western cultures, and it is not uncommon to see people wearing long pants and shirts throughout the summer. Even though you will be in classes with other foreigners, we strongly discourage you from bringing clothes that could be seen as provocative in any way. Clothes that may be acceptable in the United States, including tank tops, tight pants, and short shorts, may be seen as inappropriate in China. Please leave at home any ill-fitting clothes or items that expose more skin than your grandmother would want to see.

 



.

The suggested wardrobe for UF in Chengdu is as follows:

Winter:

            1-2 pairs of jeans

            2-3 slacks

            1 formal outfit (dress or slacks)

            Long-sleeved shirts

            2-3 sweaters

 

Summer:

            1 pair of jeans

            Modest shorts or skirts

            Modest short-sleeved shirts

            1 lightweight jacket for cooler nights

            1 formal outfit

 

All seasons:

            Comfortable walking shoes

            Sandals, although you may not be allowed to wear sandals in all locations

            Bathing suit

            Light jacket

            Heavier jacket

 

1.6      Toiletries

You can buy many basic necessities and toiletries in Chengdu, oftentimes for a fraction of the cost of American brands. If you use a special brand and are unwilling or unable to try Chinese brands, plan on bringing enough with you to last for the duration of your stay. In addition, you may want to bring travel-size items for your weekend trips. Consider packing your liquid toiletries in Ziploc bags, and do not pack them in your carry-on luggage. Any liquids must be packed in your checked baggage.

 

Bring extra contact lenses, glasses, and your preferred over-the-counter medications. The chances are that you will not find what you are used to in the drugstores abroad. You may want to bring medications for upset stomachs, such as Pepto-Bismol, Tums, etc., since the bacteria in Chinese food is different from that in American food and may affect your stomach noticeably. You can always leave any extras behind when you leave China.

 

 

1.7      Film and camera supplies

The price for film and developing is approximately $6.50 per roll. Be considerate of the rules in museums or other locations that have “NO PHOTOS” or “NO FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY” signs. There is always a reason that you are asked not to take photos (usually to protect the object from excess light). Please use common sense and play by the rules. When in doubt, always ask. Keep the local culture in mind, and do not take pictures that may be deemed culturally or politically inappropriate.

 

If you bring a digital camera or DV, make sure your charger has an automatic voltage converter. See additional information on electrical appliances in the “Other Items to Bring” section below. Bring enough memory cards to store your photos and/or a connector so that you can easily upload your pictures to the internet.

 

 

1.      Other items to bring

Many of these items can be purchased in Chengdu.

1)      Flip-flops

2)      Bug spray

3)      Umbrella

4)      A favorite comfort food

While we don’t advocate subsiding solely on American foods while overseas, having a comfort food with you can be a nice occasional treat.

5)      Small gifts

Small tokens that represent your life, your hometown or your home state can make nice gifts for the people you meet in China.  These gifts do not have to be expensive-small UF flags and keychains can work well.

6)      Electronic converters and adapters

The basic electrical voltage in China is 220, and the shapes of the plugs differ from those in the U.S. We recommend bringing both a converter, for any electronics that cannot convert to 220 volts, and an adapter, for all U.S. electrical plugs to fit into Chinese outlets. Please note that some Chinese outlets may require the use of European or British adapters; Radio Shack sells adapter kits designed to work with any plugs globally.

7)      Extra batteries for your appliances

You may want to bring extra batteries for your appliances, particularly for any non-standard sizes that your appliances require.

 

 

photo

Please leave your pandas at home!

Picture courtesy of Sam Selikoff.

 

2          ARRIVAL

2.1      Arriving at Chengdu International Airport (CTU)

After you have exited immigration and customs and picked up your luggage, you will come to the exit point of Chengdu International Airport. UF in Chengdu staff will be waiting for you at this exit point with a welcome sign (see the picture on the right) with the UF logo and your name on it. Once the complete group has gathered at this point, the UF in Chengdu staff will accompany you to SWUFE campus.

 

You must contact one of the following numbers if you are delayed or run into any unforeseen difficulties. From Chengdu, you only need to dial the bold numbers below.

 

UF in Chengdu Office:           86-10-8735-5437

Zhaohui Zhang:                       86-139-8042-5668 (CELL)

Binyu Wang:                           86-138-8067-6063 (CELL)

 

If, for whatever reason, you do not join the UF in Chengdu airport pick-up, you should never hire a private taxi to take you from the airport to SWUFE.  Many private taxis wait at the airport to offer their services to foreigners, but they often overcharge for their services.  You should always use municipal taxis, which are both equipped with a meter and painted blue or green, for private transportation.

 

2.2      Overcoming jet lag

“Jet lag” is the term used to describe the sleep deprivation you feel from traveling to a new location where the local time is 2 PM, despite your body’s internal clock telling you that it’s instead 2 AM. To lessen the effects of jet lag, avoid drinking alcohol on the plane and instead drink plenty of water and other non-caffeinated beverages. Try to sleep for part of the flight. 

 

When you arrive in China, the local time will be at least 24 hours later than the time you left the U.S., confusing your body’s rhythm. It is best to stay awake until the evening. The first night, it is important to stay awake until the evening and then to attempt to get a full night’s sleep. If you wake up in the middle of the night and are unable to get back to sleep, rest until the morning. These steps will help you get your internal clock back on track in the new time zone.

2.3      Orientation

There will be an orientation in the first week of the new semester. This includes a tour of the campus, review of class schedules, and a discussion of general guidelines for UF in Chengdu participants. SWUFE student volunteers may be available to assist you with the use of your food card and to show you local sites, such as banks and shops.

 

2.4      Food and Drink

REMEMBER: UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD YOU DRINK TAP WATER IN CHINA.

 

While in China, you need to monitor the food and drinks you ingest, since traveler’s diarrhea is a common affliction among Western visitors in China.  The best way to avoid traveler’s diarrhea is to avoid tap water.  In the dorms, use the boiling pot provided with your room to boil tap water, which is then considered safe for drinking and brushing your teeth.  At other times, you should always purchase mineral water or purified water from reputable stores, such as those on campus. 

 

You must check the bottle’s seal any time you purchase bottled, mineral or purified water in China. If the seal looks broken, or if the water has a slight odor, color or taste, do not drink it. It is common practice in some Asian countries to refill water bottles with tap water, after which they are then resold to foreigners.

 

There’s a great expression that applies to eating in China and other developing countries:

 

“Boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it.”

(From Wikitravel: http://wikitravel.org/en/Food_poisoning)

 

If your food does not fit into one of the above categories, it may contain bacteria to which your body is not accustomed.  Even seemingly innocuous foods such as salads or fountain sodas may contain tap water used for washing or for ice cubes.  Street food can also cause sickness due to the lack of general sanitary conditions present during preparation, even if the preparer adheres to the above rules.  Know where your food is made, and avoid any food or drink that concerns you.

 

One of the most difficult aspects of taking caution with your foods is continuing to do so once you’ve settled into a daily routine.  It’s easy to become complacent after you have been in China for a few weeks, but the UF in Chengdu staff strongly encourages you to continue to remain vigilant throughout your stay to protect yourself from getting sick.

 

If you have special dietary needs or concerns, please notify the UF in Chengdu staff immediately.

 

2.5      Local customs and regulations

 

As a participant in a UF-sponsored study abroad program, you are an ambassador for American culture, the University of Florida, the UF in Chengdu program, and SWUFE.  You are expected to be mindful of the local culture while adhering to both local regulations and University of Florida policies at all times.

 

A condition of your studying with UF in Chengdu is your agreement to UFIC’s Terms and Conditions for studying abroad, two of which are listed below:

6. Code of Student Conduct: I am responsible while overseas for compliance with all conduct regulations of the University of Florida which are printed and made available to all students in the University of Florida Student Guide, the University Catalog and on the Internet at http://www.dso.ufl.edu/studentguide/. I also understand that I am subject to the laws and regulations of the host country and host institution at which I will study.

 

7.Violation of Local Law: I understand that I do not enjoy the protections of American law and the Constitution while abroad and that violation of a local law can cause the termination of my program. Violations can include, among other things, expressions of political or other opinions which are legal in the U.S. Since laws vary greatly from country to country, I understand that it is my responsibility to learn what is or is not permissible in the country in which I will study.

 

The UF in Chengdu staff expect that you will maintain the utmost respect for Chinese culture while simultaneously being a positive ambassador of American culture.  One of the best, and most challenging, aspects of studying in China is in learning to adjust to a society where censorship is common and the American notion of “Freedom of Speech” is null.  It can be difficult for American students to adjust to the lack of free speech and individual rights that is pervasive in Chinese culture.  However, you must adhere to these local laws and customs at all times, including not participating in activities nor freely expressing opinions of a political or controversial nature.  The UF in Chengdu staff reserves the right to remove any student who violates local customs or laws from the program, irrespective of whether the student’s actions lead to arrest. 

 

“When in Rome, do as the Romans.” While in Chengdu, you’re expected to live with and learn from the Chinese people around you and to abide by Chinese customs at all times.  Failure to do so may lead to your termination from the program and/or your arrest by authorities.  Punishments in China can be swift and severe, and you are not under the auspices of the American constitution while you’re in Chengdu.  Neither the University of Florida nor the U.S. Embassy will be able to assist you if you deliberately choose to circumvent the terms and conditions discussed in your study abroad application.

 

2.6      Visa extensions and changes

If you would like to change your Chinese visa either for an extension or to a multiple-entry visa, you will need an application form, which are available from Mr. Wang, the officer at SWUFE Foreign Student Affairs Office (Room 220, 2/F, Overseas Student Apartment Building).

 

In order to make any changes, you will need your original Admission Notice and Visa Application Form that the UF in Chengdu center sent you prior to your departure. 

 

2.7      Registration with the U.S. Consulate General

All US students studying in China are required to register with the US Consulate General. Please register as soon as you have arrived in China.  You may do so through the following URL:  https://travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs/home.asp.

 

3          ON CAMPUS

3.1      Dorm life

 

You will stay in a double dorm room in an international student hall on SWUE campus. Once you check into the dormitory, let your family know your room number, your telephone number, cell phone number.

 

The rooms come equipped with many amenities, including a TV, telephone, air-conditioning, Internet connection, table lamp, and private bathroom. You will have to bring or buy some additional amenities, including towels, a clock, etc.

 

The beds of the double room are two single beds. There is also a wardrobe in which you can hang your clothing.

 

   

3.2      Internet and landline

You will be charged for phone calls placed on your dorm phone and for Internet data flow into your room.

 

Many UF in Chengdu students choose to keep blogs to document their time overseas.  Indeed, blogs and other internet journals are a great way to remember your experience and to share it with your family and friends.  However, blogs and pictures are frequently censored in China.  As a visitor there and as a representative of the University of Florida, it is expected that you will keep your blog free from any controversial or political topics that could lead to censorship by the Chinese government or further ramifications.  Remember that no matter how discrete you believe your web page is, many more people have access to it than you think.  Using proxies while abroad is not a safe nor acceptable alternative to maintaining discretion.  If you have any questions about what is acceptable, please ask the UF in Chengdu center or the University of Florida International Center.

 

The country code for China is 86; the area code for Chengdu is 28. To make an international call to the UF in Chengdu office from the United States, you would dial 86-10-8735-5437. To make this same call locally while in Chengdu, you would dial 8735-5437.

 

3.3      Cell phone

REMEMBER: Do not make international calls from your cell phone, except in the event of an emergency.  We recommend that you use Voice-Over IP or Skype for your international calls in order to save money.

 

You will need to pay for the air time for the phone calls you make. For further information please refer to For fresh Students provided.

3.4      Classes

This is a study abroad program—note the emphasis on “study”--and you must attend class regularly as well as be fully prepared for all discussions. Classes meet 5 days a week, and you must BE ON TIME FOR THE CLASSES. You may be tested on all material covered in classes.  Further information will be provided to you during your orientation.  You’ll get a portfolio class schedule designed by SWUFE according to your current Chinese language level.

 

REMEMBER: According to SWUFE Student Regulations, being late or absent for class without asking for permission in advance will negatively affect your final grades, and may even cause you to fail your courses.

 

3.5      Meals

You will be provided a food card which can be used in all student dining halls on SWUFE’s campus. There are 2 student dining halls on campus, with a variety of food options available. If you have special dietary needs, please contact the UF in Chengdu Office.

 

Meals in the regular dining hall are usually served at the following times:

 

Breakfast         07:00-08:00

Lunch              11:00-13:00

Dinner             17:00-18:00

 

The UF in Chengdu center may arrange some group dinners at local restaurants during the semester. You will be informed of the date and location for these meals.

Photo courtesy of Joe Qian.

 

3.6      Shopping

 

Make sure you have received the SWUFE Sketch Map.  If you do not have the map, please contact the UF Chengdu Office (zhangzh@swufe.edu.cn) in order to receive a copy.  You will need this map in order to acclimate yourself to SWUFE campus.

 

When you arrive at SWUFE, please take a moment to familiarize yourself with your exact location according to the SWUFE sketch map. Your apartment building will be at the northwest corner of the map.

 

You will find a small store for daily necessities located east of the international dorms. 

 

There are some ATMs where you may be able to withdraw Chinese currency on campus and 3 Bank of China branches located outside SWUFE Main Gate and 3rd North Gate. You are welcome to open a bank account at either local branch of the Bank of China.  The Bank of China charges RMB 10/year for administrative fees.

 

There’s 2 large supermarket located outside SWUFE called Metro and Carrefour.  (In Chinese Pin Yin: Mai4 De2 Long2 麦德龙 and Jia1 Le4 Fu2家乐福)  You will be able to find most daily necessities at these shopping centers.

 

 

Photo courtesy of Joe Qian.

 

4          SIGHTSEEING AND TRAVEL

4.1      Sightseeing schedule

The UF in Chengdu office will arrange a variety of excursions in Chengdu at your own expense. Participation in UF in Chengdu excursions is not mandatory but is considered to be a great way to become more familiar with the city beyond the campus.

 

The excursion schedule will be finalized after discussion among all the participants.

 

ADDITIONAL TRIP OPTION:

 

The Shanghai trip is subject to student interest and is not included in the program fee.  If you would like to attend the program, please notify the UF Chengdu Office during orientation.  The trip will not run if there is not enough interest.

 

 

SHANGHAI is often considered to be the "Oriental Paris" and the "Pearl of China." As the largest and most prosperous city in the nation, Shanghai is the economic, financial and cultural center of China. Shanghai encompasses a variety of styles, cultures and peoples within its unique surroundings.

 

What makes Shanghai particularly attractive is the many different styles of architecture and design throughout the city.

The famous Bund mirrors the "British Public Park," reminiscent of Shanghai's days of decadence. The Japanese and the French Concessions are also fascinating areas to explore. The French Quarter is particularly charming, as there are many former residences from which to discover old Shanghai and its residents. The area known as the "Chinese City" is also worth visiting. Take a break from the tourists around the Yuyuan and do some serious antique shopping or just wander amidst the old alleys and streets.

Shanghai is a spectacularly modern city. The pace of development here is unbelievable. The newest area of the city, Pudong, has just celebrated its 10th anniversary. Two of the most impressive city structures can be found here, the Jinmao Tower and the Oriental TV Tower. For any visitor to China, perhaps the most attractive thing about this city is just how fashionable it is. Museums, galleries, restaurants and bars have emerged in the past few years. The heydays of the 1920s and 30s and the newfound wealth in the city are making Shanghai a place with a fabulously optimistic style and attitude.

 

4.2      Traveling around Chengdu

Chengdu is an amazing city, and the UF in Chengdu staff encourages you to experience it as much as you can.  Always remember to travel in groups and exercise the same caution that you would when traveling in any large city. 

Bring a money belt, pouch or purse that you can wear under your clothes and that you can safeguard. Like any major city, thieves lurk in crowded places. This is especially true in shopping streets, outdoor markets, or overpasses. While you are shopping or browsing in crowded areas or roadside stands, make sure you turn your backpack around and wear it frontward. If you have any questions or concerns, ask a local person you trust.  Follow the instructions recommended to you by a local travel agent or by the UF in Chengdu staff. 

 

When traveling in Chengdu, bring with you only essential valuables, such as the amount of money you will need for the day.  Leave all irreplaceable valuables in your locked suitcase in your locked dorm room.  Do not carry a large amount of cash with you when you go out. You will find that upscale shopping centers in Chengdu usually accept credit cards, which is a safer method of payment than cash.

 

4.3      By bike

Bikes are very common and are an efficient way to travel across campus. Lock your bike! You have a good chance of having your bike stolen if you do not lock it.

 

photo

Photo courtesy of Sam Selikoff.

 

4.4      Taking taxis

The UF in Chengdu staff recommends you take taxis in Chengdu as an efficient and time-saving way to travel through the city.  Please note, however, that recently there has been a substantial increase in the number of traffic jams as a result of constructing subway system.  Despite this, traveling by taxi remains the preferred mode of transportation.

You should take only municipal taxis and avoid privately-owned ones. Municipal taxis are painted green and blue, equipped with a meter, and display the price. Do not take taxis painted yellow which are officially not allowed to operate in Chengdu urban area. There is a light box on the roof of each municipal taxi. Private taxis do not have either a meter or light box, and you usually end up paying more than you should. You will see many private taxis at the airport and other tourist destinations, but you should always avoid riding in them. 

 

Whenever you ride in a municipal taxi, be sure to ask for a receipt with the driver’s taxi number on it for your records.

 

 

4.5      Using public transportation

The size and economy of Chengdu has allowed for a developed public transportation system.  Taxis and buses are all common modes of transportation.  For more local trips, the bike remains the most popular option.

When you travel from SWUFE’s campus, there are a variety of options, including approximately 20 public bus lines, which can meet your transportation needs.  The UF in Chengdu staff will be glad to assist you with locating routes to the various sites you may want to visit. 

 

4.6      Other tourist attractions

During your free time, the UF in Chengdu staff hopes you take advantage of Chengdu’s size and history to visit other tourist sites, some of which are included below.  If you have any questions regarding location, transportation, or logistics, please consult with our staff.

 

4.7      Sites in Chengdu

Please refer to SWUFE Guidebook 1.1.3.1.

4.8      Sites near Chengdu

Please refer to SWUFE Guidebook 1.1.3.2.

 

5          CELL PHONE INSTRUCTIONS

 

Important Information

 

1.        The phone calls are charged to the caller as well as/or to the receiver (subject to different cell phone plans).

2.        International calls on your cell phone are extremely expensive. We recommend that you either purchase an internet calling card or ask people to call you on the phone in your dorm room.  

3.        Most students in China use cell phones primarily to send SMS messages. It is very inexpensive and relatively reliable, costing approximately 10 cents RMB per message. SMS messaging may be a good and more affordable option for you to consider in place of using your cell phone for actual phone calls.

 

GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

 

How to Make a Phone Call:

 

1.       To make a local call, type in the number and press the “call” button. For example, if you call the UF office number 028-8735-5437 in Chengdu, you can type in simply 8735-5437.

2.       To make a long-distance call, type in the area code plus the number. For instance, if you call a number in Shanghai, the area code is 021 and the number is 5588-5588, so you must dial 021-5588-5588.

3.       If you want to call other Chinese cell phones, input the whole cell number excluding the area code.  This applies to cell phones throughout China, not only in the greater Chengdu area.

 

How to use the SMS Messaging Function:

 

Choose “Menu -> Messages -> Text Messages -> Write New -> [write your message] -> Send Only -> Input Destination [Chinese cell phone number or international cell phone number]”

 

How to Recharge your Cell Phone with Additional Funds:

 

To charge more money to your phone, please purchase the Chinese “Shenzhouxing” rechargeable card.  Scratch off its printed panel to obtain your PIN number, call the toll-free number (13800138000), choose your spoken language as English, and follow the instructions (China Mobile clients only).

 

6          FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

Q: What’s the difference between the F visa and X visa?

A: If you stay in China less than 6 months, you can apply for an F visa.  If you stay in China more than 6 months, you must apply for an X visa.

If you plan to, or even think you might want to, travel abroad while studying in SWUFE, you need to apply for a residence permit and pay an RMB 400 yuan application fee to the Visa Center.

 

Q: Will I need to pay any additional fees to SWUFE?

A: The program fee remitted to UFIC is the only program fee for UF in Chengdu. You will need to bring spending cash to China in the form of cash and traveler's checks for other activities.

 

Q: I have my own medical insurance, so do I also need to purchase Chinese medical insurance?

A: As long as you have your own insurance or have been enrolled in UFIC’s plan, you do not need to purchase Chinese medical insurance. However, you must bring a copy of your insurance policy with you. You will be asked to submit a copy of the insurance documentation to the Foreign Student Affairs Office in SWUFE.

 

Q: Can students stay at SWUFE for extra days after the program ends?

A: Students may stay on the campus for extra days after the UF in Chengdu program ends. They may stay at the dorm rooms at SWUFE. However, you will be responsible for the additional costs of the extra days for the dorm room and associated meals.

 

 

Q: How will UF in Chengdu participants be transported from the airport to SWUFE?

A: The UF in Chengdu office arranges the pick-up at Chengdu International Airport for all UF in Chengdu participants. It is the students’ responsibility to ensure that they have sent the correct arrival and departure information to Mr. Zhaohui Zhang. Please see the “Arrival” section of this manual for additional information on the airport pick-up.

 

 

 

Q: What is the contact information for the UF in Chengdu staff?

A: The phone number of the UF in Chengdu office is 86-28-8735-5437.

 

Q: What shall I do if I arrive later than expected, my flight is delayed, or my itinerary changes?

A: Please inform the UF Chengdu office about the changes using the phone numbers listed above, or send email to Mr. Zhang at zhangzh@swufe.edu.cn

 

Q: If I have questions or am in need of advice, a phone, fax or computer, where should I go?

A: The UF in Chengdu office will be open from Monday to Friday, 8:30 - 12:00, 14:10 -17:30. UF students may go to the office for help during those hours. If you need to use the office during non-business hours, you should make an appointment by contacting any of the UF in Chengdu staff members.

 

Q: Who can I contact after hours for an emergency?

A: In the event of an after-hours emergency, please contact the UF in Chengdu staff at the contact numbers above.  For a serious emergency, you can contact the University of Florida International Center via the University Police Department at +1(352) 392-1111; please let the dispatcher know that you’re a study abroad student currently overseas with an emergency.  Both the UF in Chengdu center and UFIC are accessible 24/7 for emergencies.

 

Q: What will my address and phone number be while I am in China?

A: 55 Guanghuacun Street, Chengdu 610074, P. R. China

College of International Education, SWUFE

Phone number will be available after your check in.

 

7          SAFETY SUMMARY SHEET

 

Safety Concerns for SWUFE’s International Students

 

Please pay attention to the following regulations:

 

1.                  Partner with at least 2 of your classmates when leaving campus.

 

2.                  Let your classmates and the UF in Chengdu staff know when you leave campus.

 

3.                  You may not stay off-campus overnight without prior approval.

 

4.                  Keep an eye on your belongings when you are out.

 

5.                  Do not jaywalk.  You must follow traffic light signals.

 

6.                  Do not buy food from roadside stands.

 

7.                   Take care to avoid exhaustion, heat stroke and sunstroke while out.

 

You may not leave Chengdu on your own without prior approval from the UF in Chengdu staff.

 

 

Finally, please remember that you are in a foreign setting. If you notice any problems or have any concerns, make sure you report them to the UF in Chengdu staff or to the SWUF faculty. We want to make this a very positive experience for you. Stick together and make your experiences on this trip safe and memorable. Be flexible and understanding. Things are different in China, and your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

 

 

8          CONTACT INFORMATION

 

UF in Chengdu Office:               86-10-8735-5437

Zhaohui Zhang   86-139-8042-5668 (CELL)          zhangzh@swufe.edu.cn

Binyu Wang       86-138-8067-6063 (CELL)          international@swufe.edu.cn

 

Chengdu Center for International Studies
University of Florida

55 Guanghuacun Street
Chengdu
610074, China

 

 

 


University of Florida International Center: +1(352)-392-5323

 

Director:          Lynn Frazier                +1(352)253-1505        lfrazier@ufic.ufl.edu

Coordinator:    Susanne Hill                +1(352)273-1500        shill@ufic.ufl.edu

Advisor:          Kirsten Eller                +1(352)-273-1528       keller@ufic.ufl.edu

 

 

University of Florida International Center

170 Hub, P.O. Box 113225

Gainesville, FL. 32611-3225

U.S.A.