A consumption addicted blogger… that’s me. But I learned what to consume and not to consume in Beijing over the past year. For example, do NOT consume cheap sushi from 7-eleven. Expired fish will make you grossly sick to the stomach and ruin a few good days of your journey.
However, DO consume the great food, that’s offered everywhere here. Either big restaurants or small restaurants. No need to speak chinese, hands & feet (and pictures in the menus) will help getting the exact food you like. And you won’t regret it, after looking at the bill. Alone, somewhere at 3-5€ or a complete meal for four people… 10-12€.
Do NOT buy electronic goods like LCD Monitors/TVs or computers. They are cheaper where you come from. At least in Germany. Way cheaper. However DO consider “Photographic City”, located in West-Beijing at the forth ring. It’s little shops gathered in a big building, where you can go from store to store, only communicating with model numbers and prices. Write the price they offer you down and go to next shop to compare. They’ll see that and then happens what happened to me: alone from competition between shops, I managed to lower the price of a Canon brand product (nothing small) to 2/3 of the price.
And i bought my iPhone 3G with receipt, warranty and everything in Beijing (Bai Nao Hui – as in “buy now here”), for about 500€, which is a bargain for Germans. Do NOT buy cheap watches, Montblanc rip-offs or anything of the sort. They’re crappy and some of you might get in trouble when returning with counterfeit stuff (think about customs).
And now, when I literally walked into a dodgy tourist Area, I got offered drugs, which totally surprised me and just declined “No, thank you.” And speaking of DON’Ts… They’ll offer you massages as well… and some other services might be included… But to be on the safe side, DON’T.
If you want to take home art or souvenirs, by all means, DO, but DON’T let yourselves be fooled by “art students”, inviting you to see their art gallery and pressure you into buying some art, you really don’t want to buy. These people will wait for you at major tourist spots, like the forbidden city. DO try the sweet potatoes, especially great in winter, as they keep you warm. … and i’m getting the need for some great coffee… and why not for example the Chinese answer to Starbuck’s: SPR Coffee. #coffee… #enjoy.