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Chinese Culture and Travel

Learning more about the culture and the places you can use your new language skills is all part of your learning adventure. If you’re looking for some extra cultural tips or you have an experience to share, welcome! You can browse the topics, do a search in the top right corner of this page, or start a new topic at the bottom. Don’t be shy!

A recommendation for Mandarin students who are ready to swim in the deep end.

I recently spent 3 months in Taichung, Taiwan attending one-on-one daily classes at the Taipei Language Institute (TLI) and those few days in class greatly enhanced my listening and speaking abilities.  I highly recommend Rocket Chinese as a starting point and will periodically use it to...

1 reply - Last post by Eleanor-Rocket-Chinese-Tutor -
Mar 30, 2019

Off to China?

Hi there, is anyone of you traveling to China soon? Or did you just return from a great trip to China? We would love to hear your stories, what you did, where you went, how you got on with your Chinese etc. Don't be shy ;)

69 replies - Last post by Eleanor-Rocket-Chinese-Tutor -
Jan 14, 2019

Study in Suzhou

I will be studying in Suzhou (near Shanghai) this year and have heard it is a very foreigner friendly city. I wonder if anyone has been there before and if they have any advice? I want to immerse myself in the language as far as possible; if most of the locals are used to foreigners, will they...

2 replies - Last post by Erubar -
Jul 22, 2018

Chinese movies

Does anyone here have any good tips for chinese movies that is possible to find on the internet? 

2 replies - Last post by Robert-C7 -
Jan 5, 2018

downloading audio and video screens

I have purchased both premium levels of Rocket Chinese.  I will be away on a long cruise this winter, with internet both unreliable and expensive.  I would therefore like to know how I can download both audio and video screens for the 2 premium levels. Thanks very much for any...

5 replies - Last post by marieg-rocket languages -
Aug 15, 2016

ham in China

As I was researching how to say 'ham' in Chinese, I learned it was 火腿 (huǒtuǐ). That literally translates to "fire leg". Now most ham I have encountered here in the USA is either Butterfield Ham (kindof sweet) or Virginia ham (very salty). So, I was wondering how ham got the name in...

7 replies - Last post by David K -
Aug 13, 2016


Going to have a haircut in Chin must rate as one of the most stressful interactive events. Could you do a lesson on this or tell me where I can find info?

1 reply - Last post by Robert-C7 -
Aug 1, 2015

Cultural Question: Business Cards

Is it bad etiquette to write on the back of a Chinese business card?  I am going to a large conference in China and want to make notes and write  prices  about the products they show me?

3 replies - Last post by Robert-C7 -
Jul 28, 2015


These posts are blank to me. Your other posts aren't blank.

8 replies - Last post by Aidan-T1 -
Mar 13, 2015

Chinese Audio

Ni Hao! I was wondering if anyone knew of a place to find more things to listen to in Chinese. I think if I could listen to more Chinese conversations, lectures, etc... it might help me learn. Thanks! Nicole

12 replies - Last post by Robert-C7 -
Jan 9, 2015

Mainland Film

Can anyone recommend some good Mandarin-spoken films? I'd like movies something like "Beijing Bicycle"... the type with deep themes that give insight into modern day-to-day life. Hearing a lot of native speaking will no doubt be good for pronunciation too. Cheers

19 replies - Last post by bi-ai-sheng -
Jan 9, 2015

Chinese Names

Tiko, Ki Lan, Shiko, Shak Ra, Cheni, Chena, Kedoy, Conna.

28 replies - Last post by bi-ai-sheng -
Jan 9, 2015

please leave a message when you hear the tone

How would you say on your answering machine "please leave a message when you hear the tone" in Chinese. Google translate thinks it should be this: qǐng liúyán, dāng nín tīng dào tíshì yīn 请留言,当您听到提示音 I am wondering if a better translation might be this: nín...

5 replies - Last post by bi-ai-sheng -
Jan 9, 2015

Tips On Getting a China Visa

There is a web site chinavisa.com I used it to get my China visa. Very reasonably priced, if you are not near an Embassy! The embassy charge off $100USD+ $20+- service charge and the cost off Fedex to and return! A whole lot less expensive than traveling to and from the Embassy! You can receive...

4 replies - Last post by bi-ai-sheng -
Jan 9, 2015

Please Translate

Hello ~ please look at the photo .. http://i61.tinypic.com/2ls9sol.png it looks cute but I can't read or understand Chinese. I would like to know what does it mean in English ~ please help! and a big Thanks in advance :D

2 replies - Last post by maha266 -
Nov 8, 2014

I wish you had gone to the party last night

Consider the English sentence "I wish you had gone to the party last night". I let Google Translate take a shot at translating it and I got what I think is a fairly reasonable translation: Wǒ xīwàng nǐ yǐjīng dàole zuó wǎn jùhuì. 我希望你已经到了昨晚聚会。 Now, I can...

0 replies - Last post by Robert-C7 -
Nov 3, 2014

Calling a Stag a Horse

Are there some interesting history stories which are helpful to learn Chinese history? Like Calling a Stag a Horse ([url=http://www.echineselearning.com/url])

2 replies - Last post by Sam--369 -
Jul 20, 2014

Name that song

Who knows the name of the song used as the lesson 1.0 "Greetings" overture

1 reply - Last post by Shawn-K9 -
Mar 17, 2014

Looking to understand China?

Harvard has made available a free course on Chinese history as a MOOC (Massively Open Online Course). It's called "ChinaX". This would be a nice complement to your Rocket Chinese studies. This epic course is breathtaking in it's scope, thoroughness, and quality. Content is metered out in...

2 replies - Last post by William-M43 -
Feb 26, 2014

Chinese dialects

Hi! I was wondering if we learn Cantonese as well as Mandarin with this course, or is it just Mandarin?

28 replies - Last post by 524822 -
Nov 16, 2013

Using Chinese in Emails

Is it considered acceptable to use pinyin in emails and if so, do the tine marks remain? Or is it not considered appropriate in Chinese culture to use pinyin and emails, but rather use proper Chinese characters?

2 replies - Last post by 524822 -
Nov 16, 2013

Cheapest Airfares to China

Hi, Does anyone know the cheapest way to China from Ireland? I had a look on the Internet but the air fares I cam across seem expensive. My wife and I are hoping to go to Beijing next summer but were checking prices for this summer to get an idea as to prices.

6 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Nov 9, 2013

Mid-autumn festival

中国人,大家好! 我是俄罗斯人。我六十岁了。我是工程师,在工厂里工作。 我去过中国很多次,因为我经常来这儿出差。 我检查电动工具的质量。 我叫Vova,...

2 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Nov 9, 2013

saying Thank-You in China

I have been in china for almost two and a half years and it seems when we got for dinner, I am he only-one who says thank-you to our server. When my Chinese wife's mother does me a favor, I say thank-you, her response is "BuYao" I probably say thank-you to my wife a couple dozen times a day! ...

4 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Nov 9, 2013

Chinese Music

Does anyone know some good Chinese music. I like the classical and folk music with the erhu and stuff like that but it would be cool to find some more modern music, like indie bands, rap, punk, electronic, or rock. Suggestions? I know Lin likes to go to the clubs from lesson 4.4

5 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Nov 9, 2013

where is the bathroom ?

if you ask for the bathroom in China, "xishoujian zai na ma" they will think you are asking to shower ! and it is pronounced " xizaojian" ! If you need to use the toilet, ask for the toilet, ce suo zai na ma.

11 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Nov 9, 2013

Tipping in China

In one of the lessons, it was mentioned that although tipping is not customary in China, to do so will be greatly appreciated. This may be true in tourist areas of Beijing and Shanghai, but this is very bad advice in 95% of China. I lived in Chongqing for four years and have spent a great deal...

5 replies - Last post by Alan-R-G -
Aug 14, 2013

Just a further word on Tipping in China

As a white Canadian who lived in China for five years, I have been on tours with Chinese tour groups (with my Chinese wife) and foreign tours. A tour guide on a Chinese tour wouldn't dream of asking for a tip...he not only wouldn't get one, he/she would lose face. Unfortunately, some Chinese...

0 replies - Last post by Brian-C2 -
Jun 17, 2013

Rocket Chinese Premium Plus (Level 2)

Hi. I am now about to buy "Instant 24/7 Lifetime Online Access to Rocket Chinese Premium + FREE Bonus Package". If I plan to buy "Rocket Chinese Premium Plus (Level 2)" someday in the future, will I get the discounted price ? Thanks a lot.

3 replies - Last post by nget-phoumen -
Jun 2, 2013

Private tuition while living in a Chinese family

Hi there, I would love to spent 4 to 5 weeks in China during this spring/summer and receive private tuition while living in a Chinese family and taking part in social life. Does anyone know where one can get that? Best regards, Roman

4 replies - Last post by kathiebaker -
Apr 1, 2013


What is the difference between fàndiàn, jiǔdiàn & bīnguǎn ?

1 reply - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Aug 19, 2012

Chinese Music

Well, I have been searching for some classical or traditional Chinese music to listen to as I work on my Mandarin lessons. I haven't met much success just searching the internet, but did get a couple albums by Lei Qiang but I would like to add some diversity to it. Also, any music that is more...

2 replies - Last post by Liaquat-- -
Jul 21, 2012

Chinese Film

大家好! I believe that watching film is an integral part of learning a language and that it can help to become accustomed to the sounds of the language. Therefore, to start another discussion, I want everybody to introduce themselves and which Chinese films the enjoy, recommend or would...

11 replies - Last post by Jaime_Andres -
Jun 19, 2012

Chinese Name Cards

Ni Hao. We are traveling to Beijing in July. I keep reading in guide books that it's customary to exchange name cards with people you meet, and that you should have your name written in Chinese on the cards along with contact information. Is this still true, and if so, how do I figure out how...

4 replies - Last post by Stephen-Ward -
Apr 11, 2012


大家好. 新年快乐 , 龙年好. 祝大家开心,和平,爱...

1 reply - Last post by Oggiedoggy -
Jan 22, 2012


我看这些歌词时候,我似懂非懂,但不完全看的懂~ 帮我一下把张杰的 《今生今世》 翻译成英文?I will write what I feel it says on each line. 太阳弹回去 一轮明月 sun bounce back to the moon 花瓣飞回去 芳香你容颜 petals fly back - beautiful...

10 replies - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Aug 15, 2011

Travel to China from the UK

Can anyone help? I've travelled to Guangdong a few times and have found that booking via Opodo offers the best fares - but are there any cheaper fares. I also now note that almost all flights to the mainland are routed via Beijing - does anyone know why?

1 reply - Last post by Lin-Ping -
Aug 19, 2009

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