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    Hello all,

    I am in the preliminary stages of booking a holiday to china - 2 weeks on my own. It will be the first time I've done anything like this so any other advice/tips would be appreciated.

    I understand that to visit China I must have a tourist visa, which I should apply for 1-2 months in advance of my trip (suggested timetable on Chinese embassy website), at a cost of around £70. I was wondering if anyone has used the postal service option and if so how did they find it?


    Also, any suggestions for health insurance and how much roughly would I have to pay?

    Finally, can anyone think of things I might have forgot to budget for, for example things a novice traveller wouldn't think of.

    Thanks for your help.
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    You need travel insurance and it shouldn't cost more than £30.

    I don't know what you've missed, you haven't mentioned what you've budgeted. Perhaps you should let us know then maybe we can help you out?

    Useful info can be found here:

    http://seat61.com/China.htm - trains
    http://english.ctrip.com/ - flights
    http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/china.aspx - vaccinations
    http://www.travelindependent.info/ - what to bring / what to do
    http://www.hostelbookers.com/ & http://www.travellerspoint.com/accommodation.cfm & http://www.hostelworld.com/ - places to stay
    http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/index.jspa - travel advice forums, very widely used
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    I've budgeted for:
    flights - £450-500
    accommodation: £100
    trips/attractions: £150
    Food/souvenirs: £100
    Insurance: £30 - as suggested
    Visa: £70

    So about £900. The accommodation would be at Leo Hostel in 4 bed dorm, trips would also be supplied by them (Great wall, overnight stay and dragon gorge). Anyone stayed with this company if so would you recommend them?

    Cheers
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    Budget looks fine. Personally I dislike tours, especially in China (large large groups). Perhaps you will like them though I don't know :p:

    EDIT: Googled Leo Hostel, seems that's where I stayed when I was in Beijing a few years ago. Didn't do any tours with them but the accommodation was nice. When I was there a lot of building work was going on getting ready for the Olympics though - should be better now.
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    Says groups of 6 on the website. I did think of just going over there and offering a local some money to take me but not sure how this would work.

    Edit: thanks for the info.
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    As for the health insurance - definitely just get travel insurance and make sure it covers medical costs as well - there's a good article that explains different types of coverage available on http://www.travelinsurance.org if you want more info on it. Hope that helps and have a blast in China!
 
 
 
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