It's shopping season again. While tourists from China swept through outlets for designer handbags and purses, electronic devices are also popular on their shopping lists.
IPhone was finally officially introduced to China market, but a western version is still more appealing. Apple removed the WiFi capability from its Chinese version product so that the user will not be able to post offending message with anonymous WiFi access.
Thinkpad had long been labeled a Chinese product after being acquired by Lenovo, a public company traded on NYSE, headquartered in the Raleigh, NC. Retail price of similarly configured Thinkpad laptop is priced twice as high in China as one in the US, even though they are built in China. Chinese government are bounded by regulations and patriotism aspirations to 'buy-Chinese'. But the real motivation is under-counter deals on lucrative kickback. Lenovo could care less on consumers retail in China, although they had to price competitively in the US.
So here are the suggestions for the trip to China:
1) An LV handbag to bribe the boss of your host agency;
2) A US version iPhone for your technical collaborator;
3) A high end (>$4,000) Thinkpad to sell on Taobao (China's eBay), and use the proceedings to fund your trip (a $1,000 round trip ticket, $400 to buy an iPhone, $2,000 on an LV purse). The deal will even leave you some changes to enjoy your night life in Beijing.
Take a note that you should never pay to be laid in China. You shall not look for them; they will find you. Get yourself a drink one of hundreds of western style bars. Don't surrender yourself to prostitutes, that totally missed the point of being physically on Chinese soil. Young college students are free, and usually cleaner. They will find you.
However, just in case you are determined to keep your innocence, here is our last tip: never agree to teach English (or using computer, less frequently used though) to a girl you run into on the street. Trust me, they don't need a senior system engineer to teach them how to use Microsoft Excel. Regardless what they say, keep a clear mind that you are not that great a teacher. Don't fall on free, and even if they offer to pay your for the time, they will make sure you pay back with your little Richard.