Forums > Travel Yunnan > 2.5 Weeks in Yunnan Alone With no Mandarin
Get a local SIM card when you arrive somewhere in China/Yunnan. Make sure it comes with internet access. You can buy SIM cards USUALLY at international locations, like the international airport, assuming you're coming in that way - not sure about border crossings.
You MUST have a passport or ID card and NOT all vendors will sell you a SIM card. If they're having problems registering your passport number on their computer, just pad the number with leading zeroes to create an 18 digit number - Chinese IDs are usually 18 digits.
If you're in an international location at any of the mobile phone counters, do the finger pointing thing and ask them to write down how much (carry a pen/pencil & paper), or use your phone's translator app.
Also, get HFCAMPO's mobile number...as long as your issue is non-criminal - he's a pretty friendly and helpful guy.
It's an internet based translation site. There are others, this is baidu, so usually available everywhere in China.
Translations can be spotty sometimes, but you'll get the general point across.
For emergencies, make sure you have the phone numbers of major 5 star international hotels. If you get into some kind of non-criminal difficulty - get lost, etc - call the concierge - they can and will USUALLY (not always) help you out in an emergency.
Remember - google is blocked in China, so zero google services here.
With internet - you'll also have access to maps via android or IOS, depending on your mobile device.
Finally - BEWARE train and bus stations - high concentration of pickpockets and other petty thieves, especially in the wee hours.
Good luck with your adventure - should be an incredibly interesting experience!
Finally - if you need non-critical assistance, go for the students - they all study English (of dubious value). The older folk did not and won't understand a word your gesturing...