For Greater China
Transportation officials estimate that China’s 1.3 billion people will take an average of three trips each by rail, air, and road over the 40 day period that marks the holiday, for a record total of 2.91 billion trips (link in Chinese). That’s 110 million more trips than last year.
During this period, incidents of petty crime (usually pick pocketing) and other such incidents are more common.
Make sure your valuables are in a safe place
- Keep your belongings in eyesight and within arm’s reach in front of you.
- Broken car windows are extremely common. Items kept in a car should be taken out when unattended, put in the trunk or hidden well.
- Be aware of large groups of tightly packed people, i.e. public transportation, stations, lines, entrances and exits to buildings, etc. Supermarket or mall entrances with winter weather curtains are often places where crimes occur.
If you are a victim of pick pocketing and are aware of the thief, DO NOT MAKE PHYSICAL CONTACT AS THEY NORMALLY WORK IN GROUPS. If they feel threatened, violence is possible although not probable. Just confront and acknowledge that you are aware of the robbery and ask for the item or items back. Be persistent but not threatening. Thieves have been known to return items in the past.
Consider keeping a copy of your passport on your person (not in a purse, bag or wallet) in case of any emergency. Make sure your home is well-protected if you plan on being away. Lock all the doors and windows. If possible, have someone (a friend or ayi) check in on your apartment consistently. Internal water pipes are known to have problems in cold weather climates. Unplug all electrical devices including water heaters and turn off gas stove mains.
Watch out for firecrackers/fireworks on the road and coming from the sky. Often times they are tossed out of windows. Also keep windows closed in case of airborne fireworks and be aware of air and noise pollution. ALWAYS keep a safe distance from firecrackers and fireworks.