SDE New Teacher Packing List

What to bring with you to China

Download our SDE New Teacher Packing List

Men

Be sure to bring most things you need, as it is difficult to find things in a bigger make here. If you are over 5’10 with a larger build, you may find it hard to shop here, but not impossible!

 

For work: most schools don’t enforce a strict dress code. Business casual as most. Polo’s and collared shirts are great. Best to avoid any clothing that is too revealing. Covering up tattoos may be asked of you while at the school.

 

  • T-shirts (linen and cotton are best for summer)
  • Collared shirts and polo’s
  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Dress shirt/tie
  • Sweaters
  • Shorts
  • Jeans
  • Dress pants
  • Khakis
  • Quick dry pants
  • Bathing suit
  • Active wear
  • Pajamas
  • Waterproof rain jacket
  • Light winter jacket

Men’s shoes are widely available in sizes up to (42/43 EU) or (9/10 U.S.) Larger sizes are seldom available

  • Sandles/flip flops
  • Running shoes
  • Dress shoes
  • Comfortable work shoes
  • Waterproof/footwear (crocs work well in this climate and have many styles that are acceptable for work and other activities)
  • Hiking shoes

Women

If you are under 5/6 with a smaller build, you will probably be able to shop well here. If you are not, bring what you think you might need for the year.

For work: most schools don’t enforce a strict dress code. Business casual at most. best to avoid any clothing that is too revealing. If a tattoo is very noticable, don’t be surprised if the school asks you to cover it.

  • T-shirt (linen and cotton are best for summer)
  • Tank tops (linen and cotton are best for summer)
  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Blouses
  • Sweaters
  • Shorts
  • Skirts
  • Dress pants
  • Jeans
  • Capri pants
  • Casual and fancy dress (you will most likely attend some vents are your school, so be sure to bring some options)
  • Quick dry pants
  • Bathing suit
  • Active wear
  • Pajamas
  • Waterproof rain jacket
  • Light winter jacket

Women’s shoes are widely available in sizes up to (40 EU)(8 U.S.) Larger sizes are sledom available.

  • Sandales/flip flops
  • Running shoes
  • Dress shoes
  • Comfortable work shoes
  • Waterproof/footwear (Crocs work well in this climate and have many styles that are acceptable for work and other activities)
  • Hiking shoes
  • Hair products for curly or ethnic hair
  • Hair straightener
  • Curling iron
  • Make-up (however, most can be found in China)
  • Tampons (not available here)
  • Pads (can get them in China)
  • Diva cup

General

*Note: Most medicines can be found in China (or something similar)

  • Tylenol
  • Ibuprofen
  • Noproxen
  • Imodium
  • Prepo Bismal/GasX/Tums
  • Anti-nauseate
  • Cold and Flu Remedy
  • Cough Syrup
  • Antihistamine (some countries don’t allow these through customs, so double check your flight path before packing)
  • Anti-itch/fungal cream
  • Eye drops
  • Top up on prescriptions before you come and bring the pads with you
  • Deodorant (one year supply but can also be found in select stores)
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss
  • Emergency pocket tissues
  • Travel-size set of shampoo, conditioner, and body wash (to get started)
  • Trimmer (convertor with surge protection)
  • Sensitive skin products
  • Waterproof shoes or boots and jacket
  • Quick dry pants
  • Umbrella
  • Rain cover for backpack
  • Sunscreen (most in China have whitening ingredients)
  • Laptop or tablet
  • External battery for phone
  • An unlocked smartphone (must be unlocked if you want to use a Chinese sim card)
  • Surge protected electrical converter
  • USB and portable hard drive (can get them here, however, it’s good to come prepared for lesson sharing, etc. during orientation)

 

Choosing a VPN:

China restricts access to sites such as Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, some news sources, etc. To be able to view these sites,  you need to download and open a VPN. It is best to do this before you arrive because VPN websites are blocked in China. Many expats in China recommend ExpressVPN and Astrill.

NOTE: Please double comfirm with your recruiter and visa handler what documents to bring with you to China.

You must bring with you ALL the documents you have used in your visa process with you to China.

This includes: 

  1. Passport
  2. Previous passport (if any)
  3. Original degree (notarized, legalized, authenticated)
  4. Original background check (notarized, legalized, authenticated)
  5. Original TEFL/TESOL/CELTA (notarized, authenticated (if teaching outside of Shenzhen))
  6. Medical check
  7. Reference letters
  8. Passport style photos (2×2 inch)

Make digital and physical copies

  • Medical Prescriptions (for lenses and medication)
  • Credit/Debit and insurance cards
  • Contact details of friends family and SDE employees
  • Travel tickets and/or travel itinerary
  • Luggage tags
  • Driver’s license (not needed, but still good to have)

Before you leave home

  1. Watch online orientation
  2. Ensure vaccines are up-to-date and check if you need any others (best done during health checkup for visa)
  3. Dental and optometrist check-up
  4. Tax information – find out what you will need to claim before it’s time to file
  5. Set a travel alert on your bank
  6. Unlock your smart phone
  7. Take care of any online account such as changing passwords, taking off SMS protection (most accounts will lock you out due to you logging in from a new location)