Buses are particularly good for short trips, and in some cases they may be the only form of public transport available. Visitors have a choice between the newer tourist buses or the older single-deckers used by most of the locals – these can get very crowded. At all costs avoid taking a bus during the rush-hour!
Urban and long-distance buses Buses and trams run on the relatively short distance main road routes in town. Long-distance buses also serve the more outlying areas.
Finding the right bus Although destinations are only written in Chinese in most cities you will able to find the right bus from its number and route map.
Bus stations Bus stations (changtuqichezhan) are identified by a three-pronged steering wheel.
Bus tickets Tickets are sold at the central bus station. If possible buy them the day beforehand; further information can be had from CITS offices (see Information) and hotel reception desks. Fares vary according to destination but are extremely cheap in any case. Unlike trains and boats and planes the fares on buses are usually the samefortheforeign tourist asthey are forthe Chinese.
Departure times Although the buses seldom leave on time passengers should still be there well beforehand if only to be sure of getting a good seat – avoid the back of the bus which is less comfortable and the front which can be too noisy.
Group travel Air-conditioned buses are usually available from CITS (see Information) for group travel on sightseeing tours.