First trip to China, need help

Aug 12th, 2005, 03:48 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 40
First trip to China, need help

Hi. My wife and I are going to make out yearly trip to Bali and are thinking of stopping in China/Hong Kong on the way.

We can either fly into Beijing or Shanghai. We will only have about 2 days to spend in China but plan to go back on subsequent trips.

I was thinking we could go to Beijing and get a taste of the Great Wall.

If you had to choose one for a first visit, would it be Shanghai or Beijing?

I also need to know the best way of booking onward travel from China to HKG, and potentially from HKG to Bali. We will probably just stay one night in HKG each way.

Can anyone reccomend a good travel agent/online site to get the best prices for travel from China-HKG and from HKG-Bali?

We have been to Asia 4 or 5 times, but have never booked directly with a travel agent there. It is my understanding that it is much cheaper to do so.

The fares I am seeing from Beijing to HKG look to be around $150 US compared to $600 US if I priced with an online engine here.

Thanks in advance!
brj8826 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2005, 05:34 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 9,922
Beijing, as the old imperial capital (at least one of them) has most to offer. I certainly wouldn't discourage anyone from visiting Shanghai, but I think you'd be best saving it for a later trip, in combination with parts the west/southwest of China.

Beijing contains almost overwhelming cultural riches, most of them well known - the Great Wall, Forbidden City, Summer Palace, Bell and Drum Towers and much more, plus more contemporary museums and galleries. It is moreover an interesting, enjoyable and easily navigable city in which to just walk around and soak up the atmosphere. You'll only be able to scratch the surface in a mere two days, of course, and will probably want to make a return visit.

I'm pretty sure you'd get a better PEK-HKG price in China than on a so-called discount booking site, but I don't know whether buying individual segments in that way would save you much compared with simply booking your whole trip up front with a travel agent. I don't know where "here" is, though.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Aug 12th, 2005, 09:59 PM
  #3  
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Thanks Neil. Here is Dallas. We can get to Shanghai for $880 all included. We needed to fly the transpacific portion on AA to use upgrades, so I am kind of having to piece together an itinerary.

Going back and checking it looks like we can't fly into Beijing, only Shanghai. That really puts a kink in the Great Wall plans.
brj8826 is offline  
Aug 12th, 2005, 10:33 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 237
hi
i agree with Neil - Beijing over Shanghai. but if not, as you only have 2 days in Shanghai you can grab a taste of a country developing at a breakneck pace.

As for travel agents, CTS I believe should be able to help you in Shanghai.

In Hong Kong I used Tiglion Travel http://www.tiglion.com/
bkkmei is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 05:44 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Just want to say that PVG-HKG is a major business route and the fares are higher than other China-HKG routes. One-way fare is often close to US$250.

It may not be such a good deal to stopover in Shanghai for that short amount of time. Plus, until sometime next year, AA doesn't have their own flights to PVG. It's now codeshare on China Eastern, not the best airline to fly across the Pacific, in terms of service and amenities.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 13th, 2005, 07:45 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
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BRJ8826, if you are looking to upgrade from Coach to Business on the transpacific flight, I do not believe you can do this with AA if you are flying a partner. Make sure you check with AA before booking any tickets.
JerryS is offline  

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