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Tsinghua 2011 Chinese language

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kenks

wow, looks like the rooms were snapped up quickly. Not loving the whole 'hot water at certain times of the day' business, gotta admit. Going to have to get up early :P

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Freek

Hi every1,

For flight tickets check several airports in europe, it sometimes differentiates about 500 euro! For instance a single flight from schiphol with KLM or China southern is about 900+

The same flight from Brussels is 650!

Im looking to book with egypt air, witch is quite comfy.

Dont get lured into that trick from Aeroflot (430 euro) because u'll have to wait at Moscow 8-10 hours, food is crap, plane is old, stewardesses are NON-Russian ;) )

Anyone looking to live off campus? Let me know!

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Freek

+ I think we should organize some massive dinner at the beginning of the semester so we can meet one another and officially start the best time of your life!!

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Freek

Nice idea Lois.

Im sure that will happen.

There are several bars there, are quite cool hangouts!

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lizzyB

What about those of us that didn't get housing!! I was in Chinese class at 9:00, and didn't think they'd run out on the first day!!

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kenks

That's unlucky Lizzy :( I'm sure there'll be options closer to the time, inevitably there'll be people who won't turn up etc so don't give up hope yet.

When are people aiming to arrive? I'm aiming to land on the 2nd, flights permitting. Has anyone done any research on the best way to get to the dorms from the airport?

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bunny87
I think we should organize some massive dinner at the beginning of the semester so we can meet one another and officially start the best time of your life!!

i agree :) but lets do that when we all have plane tickets and arrival days perhaps.

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bunny87

oh, getting from air port to the dorms is probably best by taxi IMO. buses will be tricky, time consuming, and not luggage friendly. subways are cool, but still can be very tricky and confusing, especially if you can't read chinese, or are bad with directions. and still you'll need a taxi if you try subway/busses. You'll be probably sick of being cramped in an airplane, and all of a sudden most info you see is in Chinese, with the occasional (bad) translation into English or French. Many people won't understand you, or even if you manage the right Chinese, you might not understand them. It would be best for you all to know... TAXI'S ARE CHEAP IN CHINA. WOO HOO!. I don't think it'll cost any more than 140 yuan, but it's a LONG drive. btw, rate goes up at night (after like 9-11pm?). but really i can't see it being more than 200 yuan in that case.

at the airport EXCHANGE CASH FOR CHINESE MONEY (aka the yuan, 元).

DONG BEI MEN 东北门(east-north gate of tsinghua, but they will ALL call it the "dongbeimurrr"). That's where our Zijing dorms are. enter the gate, turn left (north) to see the dorms.

I suggest you simply print out a piece of paper with all the info you need. A nicely translated paragraph that says. I am a foreign student. I need to get to Tsinghua University. Please help me get into a taxi bound for Tsinghua University. bla bla bla. i would do it, but my chinese sucks which is why i'm in this forum with you guys :D

Mind you, a lot of taxi's from the airport won't know where it is (it's on another side of a biiig city). Perhaps if you bring a subway map and point to the WUDAOKOU 五道口 station, that might get you closer? Or print out a giant google map that shows airport to tsinghua. If they get you to haidian district/wudaokou, They can drop you off next to a taxi that's been sitting there. Find ANY taxi there and say Tsinghua Daxue de dongbeimen 清华大学的东北门。 it shouldn't cost you any more than 30 yuan from wudaokou! they may drop you outside the gate, which is okay, but i'd push them to enter the gate and immediately go RIGHT (north) closer to save you a 5 min walk with all your luggage. Building 19 is more north (which is where you'll register and get your dorm keys). I'll take a random guess and say it's the 5th zijing building from when you enter.(23[closest to gate], 22, 21, 20, 19). For photographic memory people, look at the picture I posted from the thutraining website. it's taken from the dongbeimen as soon as you enter. (you can see the markings on the road, it's a 4 way mini intersection soon as they enter).

Sometimes, there's a police/guard on duty that won't let a taxi enter unless you prove you're a student. Bad chinese proves this. I'd see them get into an argument because the policeman is like "you can't go through unless i know they are a student, i want to see official student id's/paperwork" "how should i ask them? they speak no chinese. i think they are students!" *i roll down my window* NIIII HAAAOOOOOOOO你好 (use worst possible accent). they'll let you through. argument typically ends right there cause they think you're retarded. (if you really wanna screw with them, yell a good NI HAO PENG YOU!你好朋友 and be helpful by throwing in a "wo xue zhongwen!" 我学中文。)

i hope this helps you all.

p.s. there are illegal taxi's that wait on the outside of the dongbeimen. i don't like them. they are pushy people that will harass you if you're not in a car and try to force you to use them as a taxi. they'll say anything to get you in the car. not safe.

p.p.s. if you see a mcdonalds (MAI-DANG-LAO), GO THERE. or have a secret stash of food in your luggage. At McD's, you typically can point and they'll produce food. and take your money (use CASH!). you may find your self starving when you get to tsinghua, whether it's because you can't eat at the cantings because you don't have a foodcard to buy food with, or because everything is closed, or because you have no idea where food is. i say this because when i went to china, i lived off of a sub and a lemon that my family made me for like 3 days. the before my plane, i was too nervous to each much. the day it took in travelling (the plane gave me molded food), the day it took when i got to china (i was too confused for food. and tired. and jet lag. and scared). the following day i was a hungry new person.

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meganp

I will be arriving on the 18th of August...will anyone else be there that early?

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Freek

Arriving on the 3rd of sept. :>

if you say qinghua daxue to the taxi driver, he knows where it is for sure! do not worry.

And once you are there, there are plenty of students whom speak english and probably can help you to arrive at the dorm.

There is a campus map available too, online. could help you.

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luismaro

Arriving august 15th, at 1 a.m.

Don't worry, the taxi driver will know where tsinghua is. Just show him/her the address in characters. It should be between 120 and maybe 200 at night.

In the rare case the driver is new or gets losts or doubts where to go, tell him to call the number of the apartments' reception or hotel where you want to go("gei tamen da dian hua: 给他们打电话 ).

Don't forget to ask for "fapiao", so in case you lost something at the taxi you can recover it

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kenks

Wow, very comprehensive, thanks guys. Depending on the time of day, I may brave the underground - can't be much worse than navigating London right....right?!

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luismaro

I think it's quite easy to move through beijing subway. The names of the stations are in pinyin (western alphabet), and it's cheap (2 RMB/trip)

But you will have to first take the subway express which was 25RMB last year, and then conmute to subway line 10 at suanyanqiao, then change again to line 13 at zhichunlu and after you arrive to wudaokou, will need to take a taxi again to the dormitories.

Maybe you will save 10 euros, but it's quite inconvenient even without taking in consideration the difficulty of moving with your luggage, specially in rush hour, which is an experience I wouldn't recommend.

the subway opens from 5am to 11pm, but the airport expressway opens aroun 6.30.

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kenks

...taxi it is then!

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justofftheboat

Hey everyone

Just wondering if there are any French students studying Chinese at Tsinghua this coming semester. I am a native English speaker who will be enrolling in the Lower Advanced level this semester. I completed Intermediate 1 and 2 last year at Tsinghua. It was a great year. I want to find a native French speaker to practice my French with over the semester. Just chatting over lunch. I can help you with oral English or Chinese if you are at a beginner level.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

justofftheboat

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meganp

Hey guys, do any of you know whether it would be more prudent for me to purchase things such as hairdryer, straightening iron, etc. once I get to Beijing, or to go ahead and buy converters/adapters for the plugs before I leave?

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lamchr

Hey meganp, I'm not sure about the straightening iron, but you should be able to buy all of those appliances in Beijing, and that would save you from buying expensive transformers or adapters. In fact, I would not recommend buying any adapters before you arrive since the outlets here support multiple plug types. Just make sure any electronics you bring support 220 volts before plugging them in. I would recommend just packing enough essentials for the first couple of days (medicine, bathroom supplies, snacks, etc.) to hold you over until you can get your bearings straight.

By the way, I will be on campus on the 18th.

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meganp

Okay great, thanks! I guess I should find out if my laptop can handle the voltage...

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justofftheboat

is there anyone looking for a place off campus. i am currently living off campus but will be moving on campus some time between mid august to september. actually i'm only moving because i got a fully paid scholarship for my accommodation on campus. it's a small single room in a 3 bedroom flat. shared living room with tv etc, shared bathroom with electric shower so 24 hours hot water unlike the on-campus hot water times, shared kitchen with gas cooker. it's on Qinghua donglu. 10 mins walk to subway station. 30 mins walk to the C building (that's the building that the chinese classes are held). i guess 10-15 mins cycle . 1500 per month + approx 100 for elec / gas / internet(broadband). so 1600 per month. it's small (one might say cosy), and it's quite neat and tidy. also there is a great chuan and jiaozi (skewer and dumpling) night market just outside which is a good change from campus food. about as cheap too. flatmates are a chinese guy and a chinese girl (not a couple), both speak good english and have helped me a lot with my chinese. the guy works in tsinghua and drives to and from campus each day by car which is great for a lift. if you're interested or have any more questions just ask. :)

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NutD_V

Hi Y'all,

Im also in this course and really excited that've found my soon-to-be friends here. I'll be there on 1st Sep. see you guys there:) Oh! and I'm another absolute beginner.

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