1. It is the best place to learn mandarin
Being one of the largest populated places on earth, there are so many languages spoken in China, Mandarin being the most spoken language. This tends to attract au pair’s who choose China, as they want to learn or improve their mandarin. The citizens of Beijing speak the simpler and standard mandarin while people from other provinces all tend to have different tones when speaking mandarin. So if you can speak some level of mandarin, communicating will people wouldn’t be an issue. You will also find people always happy to teach or correct you when you try to speak mandarin. They would usually teach you slangs or easier ways of saying a particular word, which is mostly used in everyday settings unlike the methods used in various language textbooks. And as an Au pair, your host Chinese family would be your best language teachers. Most Beijing families tend to speak the proper mandarin when at home, though grandparents or relatives from other provinces, may have different tones and accent which might take sometime getting used to.
2. There are so many places to visit during your stay
There are various stunning attractions in Beijing, the capital of China. As one of the birthplaces of the Chinese civilization and one of the six ancient capital cities in China, most of the locations of authority are in Beijing. For example, the Forbidden City, when you visit this place, the magnificent and splendid palaces will stun you, its structures and architecture will amaze you. There is so much history in the designs and structures you find in this place, showing how past royalties lived their lives. The Summer palace is also another stunning attraction in Beijing. With a vast ensemble of lakes, gardens and palaces, it is one of the top destinations for tourists in China. The Great Wall, another magnificent structure in human history is located in Beijing. The wall has so much history dating back to the 7th century BC. Every Chinese citizen would be happy to tell you stories about the Great Wall. Beijing also has the famous 798 arts gallery, comprising of decommissioned military factory buildings and artistic figures and structures, the things you see here will amaze you.
Apart from these listed places, China still has so many attractions to explore, with beautiful scenery and culture.
3. Leisure and Entertainment
There are so many fun things to do during au pair program in China. In Beijing, the two most famous entertainment hotspots are in “Sanlitun” and ”Wudaokou”. These are different locations in the city where you can find clubs, bars, shopping centers and many more. Clubbing in China is an experience on its own, as each place has something to offer.
4. Convenient Transportation.
China boosts a great transportation system, making it very easy for you to explore and move around. During your days off, you can explore Beijing with its convenient subway stations. Transportation is really cheap and for about 3-6 RMB, you can travel any in the city and on time. The subway signs are very clear with instructions in English making it easier for you to navigate your way. The trains are available from 5am to 11pm and it takes about five minutes for the next train to arrive.
During holidays or planned trips the trains are also easy and assessable for transportation to any destination in China. The trains are fast and comfortable and depending on your preferences, you could choose to sit or sleep on a bed during your journey. Within 6 hours, you could tke the train from Beijing to Xi’an to visit the famous Terra-Cotta Warriors.
There are also flights available If you choose to visit places in the south of China. The airport is not far from the city center and with the train you could get to it in minutes. Whatever mode of transport you choose, you can be assured to get there safe and on time.
5. The amazing Chinese food
Beijing is a huge city with mixed people from all over China, so it has all kinds of food from different places in China. The Beijing famous Roast Duck is a traditional Beijing food, that tastes and looks great. You would be amazed at how it is prepared and presented when you order this delicacy in a restaurant. If you love spicy food, try the “chengdu” hotpot, which can be extremely spicy. You can also find foreign restaurants, such as Mcdonalds and KFC in China. As an au pair, you will be fed the traditional Chinese food in your host family home. Chinese families enjoy eating vegetables and try to have balanced diets.
6. Things are cheap
Although Beijing being the capital of China possesses the scenery of modern structures and high life, things are actually cheap in comparison to Europe and America. The Chinese currency is 1/7 for dollars and 1/8 for euros. A beer costs around 5 RMB. You can also find cheap clothes, shoes and bags in stores around the city.
You can also shop online on the website ”Taobao” where you will find every thing you want at a very cheap price. The seller always pay the freight and you just stay at home and wait for your goods to arrive. If you live in Beijing, your goods arrive even quicker in just 2 to 3 days.
If you are considering doing an au pair for your gap year and still have some doubts, you can be assured that China is a very good choice. Beijing boost really friendly people and is a nice place for youths. Here you will have so many opportunities that would benefit you in the long run.