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View Poll Results: Which city is better for an young expat?
Shenzhen 8 44.44%
Shanghai 10 55.56%
Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-04-2016, 07:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenTiger View Post
I personally would choose Shenzhen just for its proximity to Hong Kong. Unless you have VPN arrangements made in advance, be prepared in PRC to be isolated from your social media friends. The Great Firewall blocks facebook, pretty much all Google services including Gmail, twitter, Instagram, flickr, etc. I buy a HK SIM card whenever I go to China because I use these sites to maintain contact with lots of families and friends, and uses Gmail for business/work purposes. Within China, I have to switch to Baidu and Wechat. While I understand people from mainland China are more attracted to Shanghai, and the nearby cities of Suzhou, Hangzhou and Nanjing do indeed have more history and culture to offer; for people from outside the mainland, a trip to Hong Kong or Macau is a breath of fresh air. The cleaner air (compared to Shanghai), the Internet without firewalls, the more international selection for shopping and dining, etc. mean a lot, even if you just go to HK once every week, every fortnight or every month.
It takes 3 minutes to install a Vpn on your phone/laptop. I am an idiot when it comes to technology and even I didn't have trouble using Google, gmail, Facebook etc.

Of course it is a nuisance but Shenzhen has exactly the same propblem. It is not HK.
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Old 07-04-2016, 07:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
It takes 3 minutes to install a Vpn on your phone/laptop. I am an idiot when it comes to technology and even I didn't have trouble using Google, gmail, Facebook etc.

Of course it is a nuisance but Shenzhen has exactly the same propblem. It is not HK.
Shenzhen has the same problem, but it is close enough to HK that you can actually go there to fix the problem. It is completely possible to maintain a HK-based mobile phone plan (or prepaid SIM card) when you are in Shenzhen. It is much more difficult if one is in Shanghai.

It might take 3 minutes for you to install a VPN, but since you are familiar with the mainland, you have families and friends who can guide you on the best way to circumvent common things encountered in China. Most of us don't. Many years ago, I installed a VPN and it worked. Google was still not blocked during this time, but facebook was and the VPN still allowed me to access it. The next time I went to China couple of years after, VPN was too slow to be workable and I was left with no cheap way to access Gmail, which I desperately need.

Shenzhen might not be HK, but it is close enough to HK to make it possible to visit once or twice a week. San Jose might not be San Francisco, but it's close enough to take advantage of what San Francisco has to offer. I should know, I've lived in San Francisco before and had lots of friends in San Jose. Traffic going to San Francisco on Fridays and weekends say it all. San Jose might be boring but boredom there is hardly comparable to Houston where the landscape seems to stay the same whichever direction you drive to.
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Old 07-11-2016, 09:20 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenTiger View Post
Shenzhen has the same problem, but it is close enough to HK that you can actually go there to fix the problem. It is completely possible to maintain a HK-based mobile phone plan (or prepaid SIM card) when you are in Shenzhen. It is much more difficult if one is in Shanghai.

It might take 3 minutes for you to install a VPN, but since you are familiar with the mainland, you have families and friends who can guide you on the best way to circumvent common things encountered in China. Most of us don't. Many years ago, I installed a VPN and it worked. Google was still not blocked during this time, but facebook was and the VPN still allowed me to access it. The next time I went to China couple of years after, VPN was too slow to be workable and I was left with no cheap way to access Gmail, which I desperately need.

Shenzhen might not be HK, but it is close enough to HK to make it possible to visit once or twice a week. San Jose might not be San Francisco, but it's close enough to take advantage of what San Francisco has to offer. I should know, I've lived in San Francisco before and had lots of friends in San Jose. Traffic going to San Francisco on Fridays and weekends say it all. San Jose might be boring but boredom there is hardly comparable to Houston where the landscape seems to stay the same whichever direction you drive to.
Houston is way better than San Jose, the only positive thing about San Jose is its proximity to a few more attractive cities.

Houston has a lot to offer, great steak, great BBQ and great people. The landscape in Houston is actually an advantage if you drive a vehicle with manual transmission.
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Old 07-11-2016, 12:01 PM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,265,341 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bayesian View Post
Houston is way better than San Jose, the only positive thing about San Jose is its proximity to a few more attractive cities.

Houston has a lot to offer, great steak, great BBQ and great people. The landscape in Houston is actually an advantage if you drive a vehicle with manual transmission.
I am not saying Houston is a bad place but that sounds desperate. Great BBQ?
I do like flat landscape though. People here talk as if mountains are necessarily a good thing. I only want to see mountains when I travel and would hate the hills/slopes in the city where I live.
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Old 07-11-2016, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Guangzhou, China
9,779 posts, read 13,359,093 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
I am not saying Houston is a bad place but that sounds desperate. Great BBQ?
I do like flat landscape though. People here talk as if mountains are necessarily a good thing. I only want to see mountains when I travel and would hate the hills/slopes in the city where I live.
I'm still trying to figure out why being in close proximity to historic towns with little to no consequential economic or cultural output outside the region is a virtue (Shanghai), while close proximity to multiple major global centers of commerce, tourism, industry (HK, MC, and GZ), its own stock exchange and what may be the most stratopsheric growth ever experienced by a city in human history, etc (Shenzhen) isn't worth talking about...
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Old 07-12-2016, 12:35 PM
 
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Originally Posted by 415_s2k View Post
I'm still trying to figure out why being in close proximity to historic towns with little to no consequential economic or cultural output outside the region is a virtue (Shanghai), while close proximity to multiple major global centers of commerce, tourism, industry (HK, MC, and GZ), its own stock exchange and what may be the most stratopsheric growth ever experienced by a city in human history, etc (Shenzhen) isn't worth talking about...
What historic towns with little to not consequential economic or cultural output? I have no idea what you are talking about. Macau? Since when Macau becomes relevant to anything? It is a sleepy small town with some casinos.


I just think it makes sense to compare these two cities. Being close to another city, I don't think it matters that much, no matter how much you want to convince yourself.


as to "stratospheric growth", honestly, it is China. If China wants to create another Shenzhen, it will and it can. But China won't be able to invent another Shanghai, not in 200 years.
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Old 07-12-2016, 08:34 PM
 
1,099 posts, read 1,669,994 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
What historic towns with little to not consequential economic or cultural output? I have no idea what you are talking about. Macau? Since when Macau becomes relevant to anything? It is a sleepy small town with some casinos.


I just think it makes sense to compare these two cities. Being close to another city, I don't think it matters that much, no matter how much you want to convince yourself.


as to "stratospheric growth", honestly, it is China. If China wants to create another Shenzhen, it will and it can. But China won't be able to invent another Shanghai, not in 200 years.
Macau is indeed tiny, but it is far from "sleepy". Its casino industry has surpassed Las Vegas. While Las Vegas is not a large city, even by American standards, sleepy is the last word to describe Las Vegas. I've been to both, and both are more alive and busier at midnight than at 7am on any given day.

Proximity to another city does matter a lot in many cases.

Can China indeed create another Shenzhen? I doubt it. If it can, it already did. Shenzhen is successful because of its proximity to Hong Kong. One can only speculate as to the reasons why Shenzhen Special Economic Zone, Zhuhai Special Economic Zone and Xiamen Special Economic Zone are very successful while Shantou Economic Zone located midway between them lags behind.

Proximity to another city is indeed very important. Depends on the circumstances. Also, it is really difficult to compare one is in Shanghai compared to one is in boring San Jose. Most American cities have city limits way smaller than Chinese cities, and living in the "sleepy" suburban bedroom communities are often preferred while the concept of "inner city" does not apply to China at all. For instance, distance between San Jose Airport and San Francisco International Airport is actually still shorter than the distance between Shanghai Pudong International Airport and Shanghai Hongqiao Airport.
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Old 07-13-2016, 12:19 AM
 
Location: Guangzhou, China
9,779 posts, read 13,359,093 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by botticelli View Post
What historic towns with little to not consequential economic or cultural output? I have no idea what you are talking about. Macau? Since when Macau becomes relevant to anything? It is a sleepy small town with some casinos.

I just think it makes sense to compare these two cities. Being close to another city, I don't think it matters that much, no matter how much you want to convince yourself.
I was referring to this quote of yours, earlier on in the thread:

Quote:
I don't know why proximity to HK is considered an advantage unless you have relatives or friends there. Shanghai also has the advantage of being next to the beautiful historic city of Suzhou (25 minutes by train) and so many other historic cities.
I think it's clear from your past posts that you simply don't like HK, and to some degree or another view Cantonese culture as being inferior to Shanghainese culture, for whatever reason... in any case, more or less the entirety of the rest of the world and most of China, for that matter, disagrees with you.

Quote:
as to "stratospheric growth", honestly, it is China. If China wants to create another Shenzhen, it will and it can. But China won't be able to invent another Shanghai, not in 200 years.
I don't believe that China could these days, as its economy is in "maintain" mode as opposed to "boom" mode. There are so many vacant malls and apartment buildings going up all over the place... there are attempts at creating other boomtowns all over the country that have fallen flat. Why did Shenzhen do well? Because of its proximity to HK, GZ, and Macau, and the long-established economies that these places have.
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Old 07-17-2016, 11:23 PM
 
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Shenzhen is too different from HK. You can still say they are similar, but not from a HK person's point of view.


Shanghai and HK are obviously more famous and international than Shenzhen. You can see much more non Chinese people in Shanghai and HK.


Shenzhen seems like a place full of spicy loving Chinese from inland China, and it does not have much history and local people or identity. Vastly different from local Shanghainese and Hongkongers who traditionally dislike spicy food and love seafood. Shanghai and HK are both very open to foreign and modern cultures. The first Chinese movie and modern music industries were in Shanghai and moved to HK after the Chinese Civil War.
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