Food and Public Transpo: Random Shanghai Facts for the Pinoy (I)

Yao Ming at Madame Tussaud's Shanghai

Madame Tussaud’s Shanghai opened last month, and here’s a shot of Shanghai-native Yao Ming’s wax figure, outside the exhibit. More photos when I do actually shell out the 120RMB admission fee.

Food

  • Fishballs, kikiam, and its hybrids are also available here, but they are boiled, not fried. One stick costs 2 kwai (roughly, x7 for Peso conversion), and they come in plastic cups with the water they’re cooked in, which some do fancy drinking. Almost always available at a neighborhood convenience store. Oh, no kwek-kwek here.
  • Siopao, the one in my neighborhood at least, cost 6 jiao (add 4 jiao, you get 1 kwai; kwai is the same as RMB), so thats about 4 pesos each. Not bad at all. The one I like has a soft, very juicy, bola-bola-like pork filling.

Public Transportation

  • Buses are usually numbered to signify their routes, but some do have Chinese-characters only, which I was told bears the name of their destination. 95% of the time, the buses only stop at the designated bus stops.
  • There are air-con buses (basic fare: 2 kwai), and ordinary buses (basic fare: 1 to 1.50 kwai). Orindary buses don’t have bus conductors, so you have to drop your fare at the designated money bank near the driver. Its also common to see women drivers here.
  • To ease public transportation travel, its best to get a Transportation Card, which is an RFID-enabled card for bus, subway, taxi, and -well, according to the pictures on the card- even ship rides.
  • If you ask me, if you don’t speak Mandarin, but would like to go around Shanghai, the subway is the way to go. Subway signs and maps do have English translations, and, when armed with a Transporation Card, the only hindrance to discovering the rest of Shanghai on your own is your sense of direction.
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