INTESOL Course

Before getting in to quarantine, I first had to apply for the work visa for China and then flew from England to China.

The 14-day quarantine had begun. I was exhausted from travelling and looked forward to settling in my new room. I loved the decor of the hotel.  I also liked my room especially for the view that I had. It was a view of a highway and buildings nearby.  The hotel was called the Holiday Inn which was located in Chengdu, China.

The hotel room amenities consisted of: a TV, 2 double beds, Air conditioning and fan, fast Wi-Fi, towels, mini-fridge, kettle, tea, bottles of water, hand and body soap, shampoo, toothpaste and a toothbrush, robes and slippers, in-room phone, menu for daily food provided. There was a choice for Chinese or Western food.

The other option was that you could order food from outside of the hotel but only after the first test was received back as a negative result.

Unlike other people’s experiences, we were not charged for the hotel when we checked in. We had to pay at the end of our stay. It cost 350 RMB per night plus food.

When you do go to collect things from outside your room, the rule was to always wear a mask.

On the first day, I was provided with a letter that I had to sign. It explained the process of the daily routine and that I must abide by the rules. The daily routine consisted of having temperature checks in the morning and in the afternoon. Breakfast was usually provided around 5am and left on the door handle then lunch at 12pm and dinner was after 5pm.

Due to the language barrier I used to communicate with them via WeChat so it definitely helped to make the communication much easier. The staff at the hotel were fabulous as they were super accommodating and helped to make my stay very comfortable. I never felt neglected as they were always there to provide a helping hand. Anything that was needed for the room was quickly sent to the door so it was overall a stress-free experience.

My advice is to bring things that you enjoy doing even if that is exercise stuff or games. Also, bring snacks or any type of favorite foods that you may not be able to have access to while at the hotel. I brought my favourite cookies and candies from the UK. I also would order from Taobao or fruit from the local market which delivered. Make sure that your phone has a local SIM card / telephone number.

3 meals were too much for me so I ended up only having breakfast and dinner. Dinner was my favourite meal of the day. The food overall was very delicious.

On the 7th day they did a blood test and on the 12th day, they did an oral test.

For the first couple of days it was a bit challenging but I used meditation and yoga throughout the time. It truly helped me to stay calm and make the best out of the situation.

On the 12th day, I was given a code that I had to scan and add the details of where I was travelling.

On the final day of my quarantine the checkout was at 1 p.m. I went downstairs to the front desk and was provided with the outstanding charges which included the room and meal charges per day. It came to 5,800 RMB and I paid via WeChat.  The other options where to pay via Alipay or credit card. After making payment, I was guided to a table where I collected my passport and was provided with a paper to show my test results and a letter explaining that I had successfully completed the 14-day quarantine.  I was free to leave so I ordered a DiDi and headed back to the airport to continue with my final destination to Shanghai.

I would recommend for anyone who’s travelling to try to arrive in the place where you’re going to be living and not doing a connecting flight.  Many provinces have implemented an additional 7 to 14-day quarantine if you have travelled from province to province.  I’ve shared my experience but remember every province and hotel will vary in regards to the rules and the procedure of how things are done.

I’m deeply grateful for the Facebook group called, Foreigners Stuck Outside of China and the WeChat groups where people took the time out to share valuable information to help others.  Without these groups, I would have probably made many errors and quickly became discouraged. I wish you all a very safe and smooth journey back to China. I hope my articles can help as a guide.

About the Author:

Stevonna Smith
你好! My name is Stevonna. I was born and raised on the island of Bermuda. I have over 4 years of teaching experience and I have been living and teaching in China for over 2 years and it has been filled with lots of fun and amazing experiences. This includes working with great students, travelling around Asia, meeting new people and enjoying my favourite hobbies like trying new cuisines and doing aerial yoga.
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