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China Internship Update: Joost van Opstal

How do you feel about being in China? 
Very excited! I have experienced that people here are very open and friendly, and there is a huge willingness to help one another. Also, the culture is amazing, in some places it is like you have stepped back in time, while in other places it feels like you are suddenly in the future. All and all, a great diversity.

What one cultural difference stands out to you in particular about China?
The superstitions. People really think about what how they act and how certain things might affect the future. I can see that it has a large influence on the daily life of Chinese locals.

What are your initial impressions of Beijing?
Great city, great willingness to help one another and a city of opportunities.

How does Beijing compare to your hometown? 
Well, my hometown is a small village in the Netherlands with 12,000 inhabitants. So for one it is quite big in comparison! It is a real metropolitan city, where in my village pretty much everyone knows everyone.

What was the first thing you did upon your arrival?
Got scammed by a taxi driver by paying 500rmb instead of 100rmb for a ride from the airport, first and last time, haha!

Gi2C tip: Unfortunately, this can happen to any newcomer in any foreign country. For the full-service internship experience, including airport pickup, select the International Internship Placement package. If you do need to take a taxi from the Beijing airport to the center of town, it should cost less than 80rmb and the taxi driver should turn on the meter immediately. If he has no meter, get out of the car. Make sure to stand in the taxi queue, don't ever get in a cab with someone who calls out to you or who speaks English.

What have you eaten so far?
Loads of street food, Beijing roast duck, hotpot, Korean and etc.


We look forward to hearing from Joost soon about how his internship is going! Stay tuned.
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