How Safe Is China?

China is one of the biggest countries in the world. And with its vast land area comes endless beautiful regions and cities to explore. Every year, China attracts over 100 million visitors. But how safe is China? Let’s find out here.

Public Safety 

China is a very safe country international standards according to international students. With the use of modern technology in policing and strict law enforcement it is one of the safest countries in the world.

In 2020, China’s criminal index dropped by 31.18% compared to 2016, one of the lowest crime rates in the globe.

Although some foreigners have reported being victims of petty crimes like pickpocketing, the rate is relatively low. Violent crimes such as homicide, burglary, and robbery are quite rare. 

Robot police “Anbot” is China’s recent innovation in maintaining public safety. China is leading in technological solutions to protect citizens. 

Traffic And Road Safety

Physical road conditions in metropolitan areas such as Beijing and Shanghai are excellent.

Like most developed countries, traffic congestions and delays are quite common anywhere in China.

One of the greatest road hazards are from local drivers who have very limited driving experience. It is important to be careful when crossing the road, or using e-bikes because of China’s different road and driving culture and fast pace. 

Like most developed countries, traffic congestions is a challenge in China.

Public Transportation

Taking trains, buses and taxis are generally safe methods for transportation in China. They are also very affordable compared to Western countries. However, you should still take precaution when hailing public transport.

Always take official, colored taxis, only accept fares that have meters, write down your destination’s address in Chinese characters and ask for a receipt at the end of your trip.

China’s high-speed rail system with its modern trains are becoming the preferred mode of transportation over flying and is one of the safest in the world.

Environmental And Weather Safety

China, and Beijing has a reputation for air pollution, but in recent years the situation has improved to comparable levels to other international cities.

Coal-fired power stations and factories were closed and burning coal for heat in homes was banned. More than 70 cities turned their smoggy skies to bluer skies.

As for weather conditions, it is common to have typhoons and monsoons between April and October especially in the south and southeast areas of China. Low-lying regions in the Yangzi and Li rivers can flood during this time.

There was air pollution in Beijing but now the situation has improved considerably and the air quality is much better.

Food Safety

Tap water in China is not safe to drink. However, in Chinese restaurants where you get water with your meal, water is boiled and safe to drink. You can also order bottled water anywhere that is very safe.

Many foreigners worry about the quality of food in China, but it’s actually a gastronomic country where people take pride in their food preparation. Food regulation at restaurants and cafes are strict so it is safe to eat in many places.

China is known for its sprawling street food and snack stalls. Most vendors usually use seasonal and fresh ingredients that are cooked right in front of you.

There are quite strict requirements for food preparation and most restaurants offer good quality hygiene standards. China is well known as having a rich and fascinating food culture.

Beijing enacted a new law regulating the peddling of street food. Vendors are required to obtain licenses and operate within fixed locations and at designated times and thus providing a basis for enforcement efforts.

Travel Advisories On COVID-19

Since March 28, 2020, China’s borders have been closed to almost all foreigners. However, this slowly changed at the beginning of August 2020 when China relaxed its visa restrictions for foreign nationals from 36 European countries and 13 Asian countries.

On September 23, 2020, the Ministry of Foreign Affair (MFA) released the announcement on entry of foreign nationals holding valid Chinese residence permits in three categories.

As of January 2021, international students are still not allowed to enter China, with the exception of South Korean students. Admissions for 2021 intake in Chinese universities is ongoing, but students will have to wait for an official announcement as to when they can come back to China.


Our Takeaway

In general, all countries have good and bad sides, so it’s best to take precaution regardless of where you are. Travel with insurance, familiarize yourself with local laws, culture and customs and keep your personal belongings close.

China is a beautiful and safe country worth visiting. Tourists, expats and international students have very positive experiences in China. In the mean time, read more about everything China and we will see you this year (hopefully) when travel bans are lifted!

Content crafter at China Admissions with nine years of professional writing experience. Fil-Chinese who honors my heritage every day. On a fascinating journey exploring China and tracing my ancestry. See China through my lens.
Christine Chiu

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