There are P2P (peer to peer) shared apps such as Xoom, used to hold USD or CNY funds to avoid the SWIFT fees of USD 35 per wire transfer. But you have to wait for someone who wants to buy the currency you want to sell.
If you know a Chinese national - they can directly transfer USD to CNY and reverse on Alipay by registering for the special currency exchange service.
Finally - you can link PayPal (CHN) with your chinese bank account and wire funds out to a PAYPAL (USA et al) account - but you'll pay a fee - you'll have to check PAYPAL (CHN) and PAYPAL (USA) for terms and conditions.
Also, for PAYPAL China you MAY need to register your bank account using your passport. Paypal China seems to follow China's rules and regulations for international currency transfer, so that's all legit.
I was in my favorite go-to phone & laptop repair store yesterday and casually asked the price of a used iPhone 6S 64GB model. The store owner quoted CNY 1k - so now I have a spare iPhone 6s 64GB with no SIM card....impulse buy...ouch. The owner threw in a new battery and screen protector - so all in all - fantastic deal.
I'll probably trade it to my daughter for her slowly dying iPhone 6...
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Met a friend after dinner for drinks and chat up on the rooftop patio/bar. Music was a little loud for us - but was surprised at this jewel of a bar. What a nice comfortable place.
I was told the hostel only charges cny40 a night for a shared room bunk bed - can't beat that.
Truly a gem for travelers on a budget and the rooftop bar has a beautiful and memorable sunset view (see the pictures).
Stopped by last night for dinner on the small patio and to pick up a couple of their apple pies. Always attentive and courteous staff and good solid food. Don't forget to check out their freezers for frozen foods like chicken and beef pot pies, pizzas, quiches, cakes etc.
This cafe is actually in the Yunda Green Lake campus and connected to the French Language school operated by Alliance Francais or the French Alliance.
It's mentioned elsewhere that pastries are provided by A Table down the street on Beimen Jie.
Aside from the no-smoking ban (since it's on-campus in Yunda) - it's a nice, quiet, smoke free and pleasant environment to rest, read, and relax for bit - if you happen to be on-campus and can't find a place to sit.
I found Beijing Yingke through their ad on the gokunming website.
I recently used Beijing Yingke to take care of a rather complicated real estate transaction. After finally gathering all the required documents as specified - we actually managed to successfully complete the entire process in a single visit with no requirements for "additional documents" or "extra procedures".
The attorneys were polite, tolerant of infinitely many questions, professional, courteous, and most of all - professional and competent.
The law firms fees were an acceptable increment above local fees, to account for the multi-lingual requirements.
Most importantly - the requested transaction was completed on the first pass with no additional documentation or procedures - which is a stunning accomplishment and nod towards Beijing Yingke's professional knowledge in this sector.
Five Star rating - highly recommend.
Finally got around to using Salvador's delivery service - tried it out on the chicken burrito and their bag of nacho chips. Delivery was flawless despite being a bit out of area (≥4km) and the food was still warm.
First experience - excellent (5 stars).
Excellent as always - even with long distance delivery. Now if only the online menu was expanded a little (like the chicken strips...hint hint hint...nudge nudge...wink wink).