About the city: The largest city by population in China, and largest city proper in the world. Considered to be the financial capital of China. A blend of east meets west.
Climate: Classified as a humid subtropical climate, Shanghai enjoys all 4 seasons. While snowfall is uncommon, it does freeze on cold winter nights. Summers are often hot and humid and the occasional typhoon, freak downpour or thunderstorm are to be expected. Spring and fall are generally the 2 most pleasant seasons, although spring time can often present varying temperatures and weather patterns. Fall is often sunny and dry.
Housing: This is very much dependent on how you choose/like to live as well as location. Roommates are easy to find and lots of housing options exist from 1 roommate to as many as 5. Cheap studios/apartments may go for 3,000 – 5,000. Nicer 1 bedrooms (or those with better locations) begin at around 5,500 a month. Generally, having at least 1 roommate will get you more bang for your buck.
Food: Local Chinese food is extremely cheap and many tasty delights are available for under 10 yuan. Dining at local restaurants is likewise an affordable experience. Great meals can be had for 20-50 rmb and will leave you feeling stuffed and satisfied. Western food exists in spades here, but the prices of course, are higher. Craving a burger? Carl’s Jr. may set you back 60 rmb for a burger meal (still affordable). As you can imagine with a city the size of Shanghai, pricier options exist. It all depends on your budget and dining habits. Import stores are also available, lying in wait to devour your paycheck. But hey – sometimes we all need a little comfort from home. Local dishes to try: soup buns, pepper duck, braised eggplant.
Transportation: Cruising around Shanghai is easy and affordable. Metro rides are usually between 3-4 yuan per ride (depends on how far you are travelling). Taxi rides begin at 14 rmb (during the day, 18 after hours). Mind you, should you live outside of the city center, the price will go up to travel to and fro (but you will also be saving elsewhere in food and rent).