Forums > Living in Kunming > Gift shopping in Kunming for a local
A worthy gift would be to learn her native tongue... to traverse online with help of your Chinese friends/staffs to find her novel items nonexistent in Kunming.
You often take her out shopping around town. So whatever you buy in this city she has already seen, which dampens the element of surprise.
Taking the time and effort to learn simple Chinese online lingo would not only impress her, but serves a beneficial learning curve for yourself. A long-term investment to further improve relationship with your child in the 5G+ future. Especially if you intend to stay in China for the long haul. The Chinese internet isn't going anywhere in the decades to come.
You gotta start sometime, why not now?
@Jan: "... arranging the delivery while preserving an element of surprise would be difficult."
Shipping and package retrievals have been significantly upgraded in the last two years. I'm sure you've already seen the green “Hive Boxes” (aka “feng chao” / 丰巢) placed outside or inside commercial & residential buildings.
All package delivery companies, even EMS, will use Hive Boxes upon customer request. Couriers will store your parcel in one of the container slots and send you a text password combination to open at your own convenience.
Retrievals are free for first 24 hours. If you collect your package within 24-hour time period and the Hive Box screen displays 1 rmb, it is just a misleading donation plea. Just skip (跳过) the message as the payment isn’t mandatory until after 24-hours. 1 rmb fee per day afterwards.
I’ve seen people open Hive Box by entering passwords after 30 days. The person was required to transfer 29 rmb via barcode to open. Convenient for those who’ve been out of town and needed long-term storage.
For maximum privacy. Don’t leave your frequently used mobile number for shipping contact info when making online purchases. This would cut down on annoying call solicitations and spam texts. Leave your seldom-used, secondary SIM card. Just follow Hive Box official account on Wechat. Register by verifying with said secondary number. When packages arrive, Hive Box passwords will be sent via WeChat message in lieu of text messages or calls from courier to your regular mobile phone. Granted you may need to answer their call if Hive Box is full.
To say nothing of convenience, the Hive Box not only maintains privacy and anonymity of recipient, but safety. Especially if recipient is a home alone, underaged female.
If Hive Box is absent in your vicinity, or if particular packages are too big for the Hive Box, there are plenty of package collection services around town. They are called “代收,” which may come in the form of mom & pop shops that charge 1 rmb a day to store your packages. Download Alibaba’s Cainiao (菜鸟) app to find these designated collection centers nearest you.