Day 4 in Beijing: Bank Accounts and The Luck of a Wireless Phone Number.

Sunday.  A day of rest.  Not so much.

BankingIt was time to get a bank account.  On a Sunday, no less.  Banks, on a Sunday?  Yep, in China, banks are open on Sundays.  They are open seven days a week actually.  My brother’s wife, Shan Shan, helped me with this issue and the following wireless phone ordering also.  It would have been impossible without her and I owe her a debt of gratitude.  She led the way and did all the talking and told me where to sign and what my account would do for me.  Basically it is simply checking and an ATM card and that is all I need at this point.  The attendant seemed to find it enjoyable to be opening the account and smiled and laughed a lot at the little mistakes I made when asked to do something.

 

I also needed to get my new mobile phone number.  I’ve been borrowing a sim card and it was time to get my own one and my own phone number.  There are many different plans in China and it is very confusing.  Shan Shan and I had to decide which plan would be the best and we decided on a monthly plan to start and then possibly a multi-year contract in a month or so which is an excellent bargain.  I then was asked to pick a phone number and was told it would cost about sixty dollars to get a phone number.  I was given a piece of paper with about 80 different combinations and decided on a number with a lot of the number “4” in it because it was easy to remember.  The clerk told Shan Shan and me that not only was that number free because Chinese people don’t like the number “4” but I will get two dollars off my monthly bill for the same reason!  Shan Shan had no idea and had never heard of this deal before but since the number did not have a “8” in it it wasn’t a “lucky” number.  I do have one “6” in it so it is a little bit lucky.

As far as I’m concerned, it is extremely lucky number because it saved me about 200 dollars a year!

 

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