Questions on moving to Chengdu

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Viewing 19 posts - 1 through 19 (of 19 total)

  • Liv
    Member

    Hi,

    I’m thinking about taking up a job offer in Chengdu and I wanted to find out a bit about the place. Any help would be appreciated.

    What are living expenses like in Chengdu? How much is a decent apartment per month for a single or for a shared? What are average weekly groceries (for someone who likes to eat well)? I’m looking at about a 4000 yuan per month salary, so I want to know if I can get by on that OK.

    My office would be in Wuhou district, close by the Sofitel Hotel. Is this an OK area? It looks like it’s in the centre of the city, so it would be pretty happening? Would I be able to get an apartment close by my office? Are there any classified websites where people advertise for shared accommodation in Chengdu?

    How’s the air pollution in Chengdu? I used to live in Beijing, which was pretty awful in that sense.

    What’s the night life like? Is there much of an expat scene? I’m not really there to spend my whole time with foreigners, but sometimes faces and food that remind you of home can be a nice treat.

    How’s life in Chengdu more generally? What are the ups and downs in your opinion?

    Thanks for the help Chengduers!

    #8587
    Ray
    Ray
    Member

    @Olivia: Ok, here’s my take:

    1. 4000 kuai per month inc. rent: do-able, but that’s pretty tight. Chengdu ain’t as pricey as Beijing, but prices have increased alot in the last few years.

    2.Apartment: depends on the area, but ok ones can be found for about 1600 kuai if you look around. That’s gonna be pretty basic for that price, but quite comfortable.

    3.pollution: bad by western standards, but fine compared to Beijing. For example, two friends from Australia visited me last year, and they thought the pollution (in summer) was appalling. I guess we all get used to it…?

    4.Expat scene: again, it’s not Beijing but there are places that will be 75% foreigner. If you want expat friends, no problem.

    5.Nightlife: i think it’s pretty good, but compared to Beijing, you may be disappointed. The new Xiongmao club is cool if you like good music/dancing. Lotsa good smaller bars now (Hemp House/Elephant Bar/Lan Town/Macchu Picchu/Jah bar)

    6.Ups: lifestyle/food/surrounding attractions

    Downs: lack of sunshine/awful traffic

    Most people like the place, so give it a go!

    #16470
    Ray
    Ray
    Member

    @Olivia: Ok, here’s my take:

    1. 4000 kuai per month inc. rent: do-able, but that’s pretty tight. Chengdu ain’t as pricey as Beijing, but prices have increased alot in the last few years.

    2.Apartment: depends on the area, but ok ones can be found for about 1600 kuai if you look around. That’s gonna be pretty basic for that price, but quite comfortable.

    3.pollution: bad by western standards, but fine compared to Beijing. For example, two friends from Australia visited me last year, and they thought the pollution (in summer) was appalling. I guess we all get used to it…?

    4.Expat scene: again, it’s not Beijing but there are places that will be 75% foreigner. If you want expat friends, no problem.

    5.Nightlife: i think it’s pretty good, but compared to Beijing, you may be disappointed. The new Xiongmao club is cool if you like good music/dancing. Lotsa good smaller bars now (Hemp House/Elephant Bar/Lan Town/Macchu Picchu/Jah bar)

    6.Ups: lifestyle/food/surrounding attractions

    Downs: lack of sunshine/awful traffic

    Most people like the place, so give it a go!

    #16570
    JerryS
    JerryS
    Member

    4k RMB is little (above average for Chinese, below for expats).. I hope you mean 40k (monstrous salary!). See if your company offers any incentives for housing.

    Ditto on what Ray says, from 1-6. Though, i have yet to do #5, so cant quote on that.

    If you visit the Panda base, the air quality is vastly better than that in the city center. When i look into the city from the panda area… Yea, you have to see for yourself, that shits in your lungs!

    #16471
    JerryS
    JerryS
    Member

    4k RMB is little (above average for Chinese, below for expats).. I hope you mean 40k (monstrous salary!). See if your company offers any incentives for housing.

    Ditto on what Ray says, from 1-6. Though, i have yet to do #5, so cant quote on that.

    If you visit the Panda base, the air quality is vastly better than that in the city center. When i look into the city from the panda area… Yea, you have to see for yourself, that shits in your lungs!

    #16571

    Liv
    Member

    Thanks so much guys! Any other knowledgable Chendu-ers keep it coming!

    The company I will probably work for doesn’t seem to offer a two-tiered salary for foreigners vs. Chinese workers, which is morally right but possibly not so good for the cultivation of my fancy airs and graces. Good thing I’m not in it for the money.

    Chengdu is sounding pretty good. If the pollution is better than BJ I’m already doing OK.

    #16472

    Liv
    Member

    Thanks so much guys! Any other knowledgable Chendu-ers keep it coming!

    The company I will probably work for doesn’t seem to offer a two-tiered salary for foreigners vs. Chinese workers, which is morally right but possibly not so good for the cultivation of my fancy airs and graces. Good thing I’m not in it for the money.

    Chengdu is sounding pretty good. If the pollution is better than BJ I’m already doing OK.

    #16572

    Vic
    Member

    welcome to Chengdu olivia!

    the city is fine with a lot to offer albeit there are things not as fancy as in Beijing.

    once here, gi’me a hollar

    #16474

    Vic
    Member

    welcome to Chengdu olivia!

    the city is fine with a lot to offer albeit there are things not as fancy as in Beijing.

    once here, gi’me a hollar

    #16574

    I lived in Beijing before coming to Chengdu, I visit back there a couple of times a year.

    I’m sure, based on absolutely no scientific data at all, the air is better here. I’d be interested to comment more if anyone wants to start another thread.

    I’d also agree with all of Rays comments.

    except that I really don’t find the traffic that bad at all. having commuted in the US, UK, Italy and others.

    Maybe I’m lucky with the routes I take, or I benefit from bus lanes because I take the bus most places. Again I’d be happy to get to the bottom of these opinions on traffic if someone wants to start a dedicated thread.

    #16476

    I lived in Beijing before coming to Chengdu, I visit back there a couple of times a year.

    I’m sure, based on absolutely no scientific data at all, the air is better here. I’d be interested to comment more if anyone wants to start another thread.

    I’d also agree with all of Rays comments.

    except that I really don’t find the traffic that bad at all. having commuted in the US, UK, Italy and others.

    Maybe I’m lucky with the routes I take, or I benefit from bus lanes because I take the bus most places. Again I’d be happy to get to the bottom of these opinions on traffic if someone wants to start a dedicated thread.

    #16576

    Olivia I’ve just read your first message. I’m the first to say it’s none of my business, but let me give you my understanding of the job markets here.

    1000RMB Waitress – the lowest paid job.

    4000RMB Chinese Software Tester- 1-2 years experience, still requires very close supervision.

    8000RMB + some house allowance (maybe an extra 1000) .a newly TEFL qualified western english teacher with no previous experience.

    I may be a little out with these, but not much. I guess others are free to comment if they disagree. If you’re moving from Beijing you’ve obviously got some China experience. Again please excuse me, I don’t want to pry, take this as FYI. I just wouldn’t want an unscrupulous business telling you living expenses and salaries are ridiculously low in Chengdu. I understand everyone’s situation is different though.

    Also if the Sofitel (binjiang lu) is the one near minshan and jinjiang hotels then it’s by Ren Min Lu the biggest transport artery in the city. I don’t know what constitutes ‘happening’ but many foreigners and their most popular hangouts are 1-2km south. You can catch a bus or metro between the two every 2-3 minutes.

    #16479

    Olivia I’ve just read your first message. I’m the first to say it’s none of my business, but let me give you my understanding of the job markets here.

    1000RMB Waitress – the lowest paid job.

    4000RMB Chinese Software Tester- 1-2 years experience, still requires very close supervision.

    8000RMB + some house allowance (maybe an extra 1000) .a newly TEFL qualified western english teacher with no previous experience.

    I may be a little out with these, but not much. I guess others are free to comment if they disagree. If you’re moving from Beijing you’ve obviously got some China experience. Again please excuse me, I don’t want to pry, take this as FYI. I just wouldn’t want an unscrupulous business telling you living expenses and salaries are ridiculously low in Chengdu. I understand everyone’s situation is different though.

    Also if the Sofitel (binjiang lu) is the one near minshan and jinjiang hotels then it’s by Ren Min Lu the biggest transport artery in the city. I don’t know what constitutes ‘happening’ but many foreigners and their most popular hangouts are 1-2km south. You can catch a bus or metro between the two every 2-3 minutes.

    #16579
    Brendan
    Brendan
    Moderator

    Hi Olivia,

    I think number one, if you have the opportunity to come to Chengdu, you should absolutely take it without hesitation. It’s a rapidly changing city with much to offer.

    Air quality is streets ahead of Beijing, even if moderately polluted. Traffic is also on the rise, but nothing compared to many already developed cities inside and out of Asia.

    Your 4k a month is on the low side, but you can still get by comfortably on that. If you’re not afraid to get out and experiment, you’ll probably find that you can eat very well, and still have money for a few drinks here and there. As an example, I went to an all you can eat Korean BBQ with friends recently, and I think we paid 68 RMB each, which included all the Tsing Tao beers we wanted to drink in that price. A reasonable/good standard of living is extremely affordable.

    If you post an accommodation request in the forum ahead of time, you have a fair chance of finding something, otherwise your best bet would be to secure something cheap and then get out and about your working area to the many street agencies offering often affordable digs. It will help of you have a local Chinese speaker helping you out on this too. Again, something you will likely find very easily right here on the forum. Many people are only too happy to help.

    Good luck!!

    #16480
    Brendan
    Brendan
    Moderator

    Hi Olivia,

    I think number one, if you have the opportunity to come to Chengdu, you should absolutely take it without hesitation. It’s a rapidly changing city with much to offer.

    Air quality is streets ahead of Beijing, even if moderately polluted. Traffic is also on the rise, but nothing compared to many already developed cities inside and out of Asia.

    Your 4k a month is on the low side, but you can still get by comfortably on that. If you’re not afraid to get out and experiment, you’ll probably find that you can eat very well, and still have money for a few drinks here and there. As an example, I went to an all you can eat Korean BBQ with friends recently, and I think we paid 68 RMB each, which included all the Tsing Tao beers we wanted to drink in that price. A reasonable/good standard of living is extremely affordable.

    If you post an accommodation request in the forum ahead of time, you have a fair chance of finding something, otherwise your best bet would be to secure something cheap and then get out and about your working area to the many street agencies offering often affordable digs. It will help of you have a local Chinese speaker helping you out on this too. Again, something you will likely find very easily right here on the forum. Many people are only too happy to help.

    Good luck!!

    #16580

    Liv
    Member

    Yes I did suggest to them that 4000 seems low to me. I’ll be working for a state-owned enterprise though, and I’m not really sure how much room I’ll have to to negotiate since I understand that starting salaries are the same for everyone at first, then you get more as you get promoted. Advice on salaries is always appreciated, so thanks. I’m only considering it because the work sounds incredibly interesting, right up my alley and a good move in terms of my career interests (and I have savings to back me up). Hopefully it turns out to be as good a job as I think it is, money aside.

    Just took a look at the apartment classifieds on this website – thanks for that, hadn’t even seen it! Where exactly are these popular hangouts that laowais frequent? I’d like to check it out on the map so I can think about where to get an apartment.

    Thanks again all!

    #16484

    Liv
    Member

    Yes I did suggest to them that 4000 seems low to me. I’ll be working for a state-owned enterprise though, and I’m not really sure how much room I’ll have to to negotiate since I understand that starting salaries are the same for everyone at first, then you get more as you get promoted. Advice on salaries is always appreciated, so thanks. I’m only considering it because the work sounds incredibly interesting, right up my alley and a good move in terms of my career interests (and I have savings to back me up). Hopefully it turns out to be as good a job as I think it is, money aside.

    Just took a look at the apartment classifieds on this website – thanks for that, hadn’t even seen it! Where exactly are these popular hangouts that laowais frequent? I’d like to check it out on the map so I can think about where to get an apartment.

    Thanks again all!

    #16584

    I guess the tier one in respect of fame not necessarily quality are these three: http://j.map.baidu.com/IJKRc

    then there are a dozen or so at tier 2 depending on your circle and what you prefer. there are a couple of English listings magazines and web pages I think

    #16487

    I guess the tier one in respect of fame not necessarily quality are these three: http://j.map.baidu.com/IJKRc

    then there are a dozen or so at tier 2 depending on your circle and what you prefer. there are a couple of English listings magazines and web pages I think

    #16587
Viewing 19 posts - 1 through 19 (of 19 total)

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