This is a photo of

Allow the trippy community to use this photo in their answers.

Allow the trippy community to use this photo in their answers

Image Source:

  • Courtney Robinson
  • "How is public transportation in Shanghai?"

Courtney Robinson

Los Angeles, California

How is public transportation in Shanghai?

I'll be on my own this year while visiting a friend who is living in Shanghai and would like to get a handle on how good, bad or otherwise the public transportation system is there. Is it reliable? Safe for a woman taking it alone? Is it safe at night? Does it cover a fairly large area? Is it easy to figure out if you don't speak the language? Thanks so much in advance for your help!

Comments (0)

Need more information? Question already been asked? Let the poster know!


Comment required

 

					
					
					
				

Answer this Question

 Video: How to write a great answer

Mentioned in this answer:

Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

6 Answers

  • Hervé Roussel

    top answer by

    Metro is reliable, safe and quite modern.

    I didn't take it too late into night but overall Shanghai is one of the safest city I have travelled to in the world.

    There are ticket vending machines in all the stations I have been to (they are very obvious). The ticketing machines feature an English mode. I don't speak a word of Mandarin and was able to get a ticket quite easily from those machines: all you need is the metro line number (or color) and then the name of your final stop. It's easy to get lost in the Chinese pictogram, I recommend you have those two information in Pinyin (latin transliteration) and Chinese Pictogram before you leave.

    In the train itself, you will see an electronic board with blinking lights indicating which stop you are currently at and which one is the next one. There is also a PA in Mandarin, then English for every stops.

    The metro stops are further apart that in most American or European cities I have been to. If you miss your stop, you will have a bit more walking in order to backtrack.

    Metro maps come in handy for line transfer: they are available as mobile apps (https://itunes.apple.com/en/app/explore-shanghai-metro-map/id340706615?mt=8), as well as picture (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Shanghai_Metro_map_en.svg).

    Hope this helps!

    Comments (2)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    • Debbie L.

      Debbie L.

      Really helpful insight, Herve! Thanks for sharing! · (1 likelikes)

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      This is great, Herve, thank you!!! · (1 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Hervé a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment

  • Yi Molina

    answered by

    Shanghai is really safe, especially if you are going to be at downtown area or the Bund, or any tourist areas. We recently lived in Shanghai for a year and half. I used to walk home alone at night after parties in the downtown area, my husband and I also took late night walks in the French Concession areas and get snacks and foot massages at mid night, I miss that! As for public transportation, subway is really nice and convenient. I would not recommend buses because usually the bus drivers do not speak English and you would not be able to ask where to get off, and they are more crowded. Taxies are safe and convenient, I always took taxis with the company logo and license, I never took unlicensed taxis where the drivers offered their service directly to me, and their cars looked just like regular cars not taxies. Still if you are taking taxi late at night, make sure you tell your friends where you are going and check up with you later. Also you can always ask for a receipt at the end of your ride, it is called "Fa Piao", it gives you the time you got on the taxi, and the time you got off, the taxi number and the company contact phone number, just in case you left something in the taxi or you need to complain (Chinese only). The tricky part about taxi is that you will not able to find a taxi in rainy days, suddenly everybody who usually takes buses will now hail a taxi, and the competition would be very fierce. :-) So don't go during rainy season, oh, also summer is scorching hot, don't go in summer if you can avoid it. My favorite time is May or October. Enjoy Shanghai, they have awesome food: french, italian, indian, nepali, chinese, japanese, korean, etc, with various price points from very high end to very cheap. Only think lacking is that they don't have good mexican food, but that is hardly an issue when you have so many choices.

    Comments (1)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      This is so good to know and I'll resign myself to no Mexican food for a while! · (0 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Yi a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment

  • Simon Opsomer

    answered first by

    The metro is very good, reliable and safe. The network is huge, you can get everywhere. And also important: it is cheap. The price depends on the length of the trip but I never paid more than 4 yuan (which is equal to 50 eurocents). You have to choose your end station at your station of origin but the machine never complained if I got off at a station before or after that one. I guess it's no problem if it all is in the same price range. All signs and vending machines are in English so language is no problem there.

    It closes at night though (you can find in every station when the last train leaves) so after midnight you have to rely on taxis, where language can be a problem sometimes :). Ask someone to write down the address of your hotel in Chinese.

    Comments (1)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      That's great news, Simon and terrific advice--thanks so much! · (0 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Simon a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment

  • Andrzej Wiśniewski

    answered by

    Hi Courtney,

    The public transportation in Shanghai is ALL of the above answered in YES.

    It's everything you know and expect from transportation system in the western world. Forget the buses, as subway will take you any place you want. It's modern, clean, fast, safe and all directions are in English. Get yourself a card, top it up in self-serviced machines and you're good to go any place you wish in Shanghai, on either side of the bund. We used it happily for couple of days, it runs until just after midnight, so late night going back home involves taxi, but they are rather cheap.

    Just go, enjoy and have fun.

    Comments (1)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      Great, thanks so much, Andrzej!!! · (0 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Andrzej a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment

  • Daniel Cheng

    answered by

    There are two main ways to get around in Shanghai - taxi or subway.

    Taxis are relatively cheap in Shanghai. If you come equipped with a map or the address (cross-streets are helpful) of your destination, they require the least amount of hassle. I haven't had a case where the taxi driver takes the long way on purpose. Also, since all the taxis are licensed and well organized, it's relatively safe. Make sure you get a receipt when you get off so you can call the service number on the back in case you left something in the car.

    Subway is cheaper and fairly convenient as well. Shanghai's subway is as reliable as the ones in New York or Tokyo. The only downside is that it can get crowded and sometimes you have to put up with people begging for change on the trains. (Do not give change, as these are widely known scammers). The subway does not run 24/7 so it's easier to taxi if you're out late. There are enough subway lines and stops to get to the popular areas in Shanghai. It's not uncommon to ride the subway to cover majority of the distance and then use a taxi to get to your final destination.

    There are private drivers that will congregate outside certain popular areas such as train stations or tourist spots. These are just individuals who are looking to make some money on the side. I have never taken them so I can't vouch for the safety. If you decide to take them, make sure to negotiate the rate upfront, ask them how long it will take and trust your gut. (Sometimes, they might be the only choices during rush hour or rainy days)

    As for the language barrier, Shanghai is international enough that most subway trains will broadcast the stops in both Chinese and English. They also have signs in English as well. Almost all young people in Shanghai should be proficient enough in English to help you out if you are lost.

    Comments (1)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    • Courtney R.

      Courtney R.

      What a great, helpful answer, Daniel--I really appreciate it! · (0 likelikes)

    Mentioned in this answer:

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Daniel a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment

  • Qingying Liu

    answered by

    The public transportation of Shanghai is very good

    Comments (0)

    Ask for clarification, suggest corrections, or give thanks!


    Comment required

    Mentioned in this answer:

    1. Shanghai (city)

    Type the @-symbol in your answer to plot places on map!

    • ·
      • twitter
      • facebook
      • google
    • ·
      • Doesn't answer question
      • Mean-spirited
      • Spam
      • Inappropriate

    Send Qingying a Thank You Note

    • Thank you!

    • Spot On!

    • You inspired me!

    • Amazing details

    • Saving for later

    • Great photos

    • Great restaurant recommendation

    • Leave a comment