Cab Savvy

2 minute read

If you’re a non-Chinese speaker, and can’t get around Hong Kong, Beijing or Shanghai without pocketfuls of paper slips bearing the names of destinations in Chinese characters, then the Taxi Guide series of books is for you. Available in a boxed404 Not Found

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nginx/1.14.0 (Ubuntu) set or individually, the compact, hardback guides list both the English and Chinese addresses of hotels, tourist attractions, malls, markets, restaurants and bars in the three cities (the Hong Kong edition also includes locations in Macau). Separate listings cover main streets, government buildings, banks, office buildings, transport hubs, clubs, hospitals and more. If you want to have a crack at verbal communication, the phonetic pronunciations of each building or location are given too.

Arrow-shaped stickers allow users to mark desired locations before showing the guide to the driver, while detailed toll information for tunnels, highways and bridges should help you avoid any confusion over extra charges. The Hong Kong edition also has a list of phrases — like “Turn off the air conditioner” or “Put up the window” — that covers most of your comfort needs en route, but unfortunately the Beijing and Shanghai editions lack these. Such an omission would be forgivable if only they provided the one supplication that springs to a passenger’s lips when riding in a mainland-Chinese taxi: “Drive safely. Let’s get there alive!”

The Taxi Guide series is available from Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi editions are in the pipeline.

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