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Thoughts on Beijing salary offer

Hi, I've been offered a job in a Beijing-based newspaper as a sub-editor, the monthly salary is 20,000 rmb pre-tax plus medical insurance plus a 60sqm one-bed apartment paid for (it's in Chaoyang District and employers say it would cost 7,500rmb month). They also pay for all utilties, bar internet. Is this package liveable on and would I be able to save a bit too?

Any opinions greatly appreciated,
James

Hey James, yeah you would as long as they pay for rent. That's the thing that cost the most in the big cities. As long as you don't blow your cash you get I think you'll be ok.

With 20'000 RMB gross you will have 16'000 net. If you don't need to pay for the apartment, you can live very comfortably from this. Depending on your lifestyle you can easily save 10'000RMB a month, and life with 6'000. But it's also very easy to spend over 10'000 a month if you want to eat only good western food in restaurants.

RMB = US DOLLAR

How do you mean? In real terms?

RMB is worth how much in US dollars or vice versa.
What is the cost of:
one gallon of gas
One dozen eggs
A big Mac

Just typical everyday items I can compare to where I am now.

Irishfella,
Have tentative offer at Great Wall Motors.
They want me to go there for an interview.
I want to have my paychecks deposited in my credit union in the US.
Have not seen where or how to do this, would this be an issue?

I've no idea, sorry. I'm not in China yet.

Irishfella,
Are you on your way?
Talked to Headhunter today, he said depositing percent of paycheck in the USA should not be an issue.
Oh yeah, my grandmother's maiden name is O'Brian.
Just remembered.

oh, that's good to know about the paycheck. Yea, I should be there in a few weeks, hopefully.

The information is from a Headhunter so take it with a grain of salt.

Please keep me posted.
And let me know how the Donkey Burger is.

Larry P :

RMB is worth how much in US dollars or vice versa.
What is the cost of:
one gallon of gas
One dozen eggs
A big Mac

Just typical everyday items I can compare to where I am now.

1 USD= 6.7RMB

Gas is currently at about 6.1RMB / liter
Let somebody clean your car: 20-30RMB a time
BigMac is about 20 RMB, don't remember the exact price.
Eggs: conventional eggs about 5 RMB/pound better ones 1.5 - 2rmb per egg.
A local set meal (Rice vegetable and meat, and often a soup): 10-20 RMB depending on your location
a bowl of noodles: 10-20 RMB
Spaghetti in the supermarket: 6 to 15 RMB / 500g
Rice starting at 2RMB /pound
German Beer starting at 5 RMB / 500ml in some supermarkets.
Domestic Beer starting at 2 RMB / 500ml
Beef: starting at 30 RMB per pound
Banana about 3 RMB / pound


maybe this helps.

Tremendously helpful, thank you very much.
A few more questions:
Are you a local or expat to the Baoding area?
I've read and researched air quality in Baoding.
Looks better in Beijing.
Appears really bad in Baoding, is this really bad daily or is it more sporadic, weather patterns, seasonal, location in the city?
Living near running water(river, stream, lake) is hazardous?
Public transportation for a non Chinese speaking person difficult?
How much trouble and cost to lease a car?
Drivers license?
Signs in Chinese only?
How are the donkey burgers, I'm intrigued...

Thanks again

Larry P :

Tremendously helpful, thank you very much.
A few more questions:
Are you a local or expat to the Baoding area?
I've read and researched air quality in Baoding.
Looks better in Beijing.
Appears really bad in Baoding, is this really bad daily or is it more sporadic, weather patterns, seasonal, location in the city?
Living near running water(river, stream, lake) is hazardous?
Public transportation for a non Chinese speaking person difficult?
How much trouble and cost to lease a car?
Drivers license?
Signs in Chinese only?
How are the donkey burgers, I'm intrigued...

Thanks again

I'm not living in Baoding, and I'm not familiar with the specific weather patterns, environment hazards in that region.
Public transport is challenging but I never had any trouble back when I didn't speak Chinese. You will have to ask people for help though. Most info you can find in apps.
If you have a work visa it's fairly easy to get a Chinese Divers Licenses, you will need your foreign drivers license and need to take a multiple choice test. The test is available in multiple languages.
Traffic signs are often in Chinese and (Ch)English.

Lived in China for 11 years in Sichuan and can still not speak that great. get around just fine all by myself and always have with nothing more than a 3000 word small dictionary before, mobile with GPS and translator now, but most of all a good attitude and Chinese will always help you out if you're friendly.

On 20K a month with apartment you will live and travel like a King, especially if you integrate and stay away from rip off "Western smart" areas. You won't send much home though.

Oh and I've been driving for 10 years here now, can't read most of the signs although pinyin is great help that most city areas have, problem in rural though. But again gps, planning and logic sees me driving all over the Province and into other Provinces without issue.

You wouldn't want to drive in Beijing anyway and public transport is at a level you simply can't understand til you live here, car is never needed in reality, just a comfort and ego thing.

My gps accepts pinyin which is great.

That is definitely liveable in Beijing.  Most things in Beijing are actually quite cheap.  It's just rent that is crazy.

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