Casual wear is acceptable in most restaurants however some fine dining restaurants requires a specified dress code. Recommend to check when making a table reservation. You might need a light sweater or jacket as most premises are air-conditioned.
Suzhou is very easy to get around and has a very efficient public transportation system. An alternate way to see the sites and to immerse into the local culture is to rent a bicycle. Stray from the main streets and you'll come across pagodas, temples, lively shopping districts. In many parts of the city one can come accross the historic canals and bridges that this city is famous for. Suzhou is currently undergoing extensive public works as the city's subway system is under construction.
A simple "Ni Hao" meaning "hello" is the common greeting. It is not common to initiate greetings with hugs or kisses on the cheeks for most Chinese people, a handshake will do.
Eating at a round table is a social event. Dishes are placed on a revolving glass so that everyone can reach the choice of their own. The host may place food on your plate to show counrtesy.
DID YOU KNOW ?
The official language of China is Mandarin Chinese. However, there are a wide variety of dialects throughout China. Business English is mainly spoken in tourist centres (such as international hotels). There are marks, signs and logos in English in some Chinese cities. However, it is suggested that, when taking a taxi, you bring a card of the hotel you stay in or the hotel address in Chinese, which you may ask your hotel front desk to write.
WHAT TO PACK
In most cases your mobile phone can be used in major cities of China. You can also buy mobile sim cards in shops when you are in China and use them with your mobile.
For travelling in China, international visitors are reminded to note if the power required by your electric appliance matches the local power. It is better to bring a tourist battery charger and a conversion plug.