Frequently Asked Questions

Below we have provided a long list of answers to questions about China and Omeida, to reassure you that we meet all your needs.

1. Is Omeida a certified professional training institution?

Yes, we are licensed and fully-recognized by the government. Omeida Language College (our mother school) was approved by Guangxi provincial Education Department to recruit foreign students to study Chinese language and culture, and we are qualified to assist our students apply for longer term student (X1) visa and change it to study residence permit in China.

2. Are there any age restrictions?

We welcome students between the age of 5 to 85 years old to study Chinese with us, students younger than 16 years old are encouraged to be accompanied by parent(s) except when joining the summer camps. We place students at the same or similar Chinese levels to the same small class, while we will also consider student’s age. If there is not a suitable group for very young kids or senior students to join, we are always able to provide tailored courses for students who have specific requirements.

3. Do I need previous Chinese language experience to attend Omeida?

No you don't! You can begin any of our classes at ANY level of experience. 
We will place you within a class or create a class just for you that fits your particular experience level.

4. What Courses are offered?

Our most popular course is the small group Comprehensive Chinese Course, you may choose the Intensive load to study full day, or Standard load to take half day lessons and leave more free time to explore Yangshuo or practice what you learned out of classroom. During your free time, you are more than welcome to join our Chinese cultural lessons e.g. regular Taichi or calligraphy class, or have an experience of Chinese cooking, Chinese painting, Chinese musical instrument, or rock-climbing. Just talk to our course consultant, our professional team will make full arrangement for you.

Our HSK Preparation Course is designed to help students who have the plan to take the Chinese Proficiency Test immediately or shortly on completion the course.

Our Summer Camp is loved by kids and teens aged between 6 and 16 y.o. to immerse themselves in the Chinese language and cultural environment.

The Part-time Course provide lessons once or twice a week, which is perfect for local expats who have stayed/or would like to stay in China for longer time, who want to learn some Chinese to help understand Chinese people and culture better.

If none of above course suits your demands, we are able to provide you a Tailored Course with private 1 on 1 lessons as per your requirements, so that you will enjoy learning the topics you are interested in and at your speed.

Before or after you come to study at Omeida in Yangshuo, we can also arrange Online private course to help you prepare for your study in China, or continue regularly to practice and make progress in the future.

5. How big are the Language classes?
Chinese Language classes are small and intimate with 2-4 students in size, in summer it is maximum 6 students in the same class.
6. Can I join any course or program at any time?

Our courses and programs start on any Monday of the year. If you take a Private course, then the course starting date is even more flexible.
Please note, that lessons will not take place during Christmas Day (December 25th) and Chinese New Year (including Chinese New Year’s Eve and first day of Chinese Lunar calendar). However, when these holidays fall on weekdays, these lessons are replaced with various cultural activities where all students are very welcome to participate.
Holidays for the year 2017 to 2020:

2017Jan. 27 FridayJan. 28 SaturdayDec. 25 Monday
2018Feb. 15 ThursdayFeb. 16 FridayDec. 25 Tuesday
2019Feb. 4 MondayFeb. 5 TuesdayDec. 25 Wednesday
2020Jan. 24 FridayJan. 25 SaturdayDec. 25 Friday

 

7. What are the course application procedures?

The application procedures are simple and easy to follow:

1. Click the Apply button > choose the course and package > fill in the form with your personal and contact info > submit the application form online.

2. Pay USD200 deposit to book accommodation and secure your class (must be paid before arrival and please kindly note the deposit is not refundable).
Payment Information:  You can pay your course fees via PayPal, wire transfer, or Western Union transfer before your arrival.  Otherwise, you can pay in cash or credit card upon arriving in Yangshuo.

3. Finalize your arrival transportation and send us your travel itinerary.
Keep in mind, we provide accommodation for you from the Sunday before your first class.
If  you need a pick-up service from Guilin airport or the train station, please let us know in advance, please note transportation fee is your liability.

4.Obtain your visa
If you do not have a current visa we are able to offer visa application documents and assist with getting a student (X) visa.
You will need to send us a copy of your passport and travel itinerary so that we can issue visa application documents accordingly.                                Please note if original documents are needed the mailing fee is expected to be paid by students.

5.Come to Yangshuo!
Keep in mind, our weekend office hours are from 9:00am -12:00pm and 1:30pm – 5:00pm.
Please arrange your travel arrangements so that you arrive in Yangshuo before 4pm.
For arrival later than 4pm but before 8pm, our staff on duty at school will be able to wait at school and help with checking in the room, a 50RMB service fee will be charged. If your plans don’t permit you to arrive in time, then we can help you find a hotel for the first night.

8. In the event of a cancellation, can I get a deposit refund?
No, the 200USD deposit is not refundable.
However, we will keep the study place for you for the future so if at any time you are able to come for study, the deposit you paid will remain valid. Just let us know once you have made plans to come, preferably give us at least 2 weeks advance notice.
9. What visa should I get?
It is okay if you attend our courses/program with a visa you have already gained, for example, tourist (L) visa, business (M or F) visa or residence permit. We are also able to offer visa application documents to assist our long term students with getting a student (X) visa or study residence permit. 
10. Which level of class will I be placed in?

If you are not a complete beginner, then shortly before start of the course, we will arrange a brief placement test, usually on Skype, to evaluate your exact level. Then you will be placed in an appropriate class according to your language level. Following table will give you an idea of how the levels are determined and how much time in average a student need to achieve next level from current level.


Levels Time Frame Content Achievements Vocabulary
Level 0-1 4 weeks 1. Pinyin and Chinese pronunciation rules

2. Necessary topics for traveling or living in China
Students who finish this period of study can use Pinyin and engage in simple dialogues with Chinese people. 0-200
Level 1-2 8 weeks 1. Comprehensive course will include most of Chinese's basic sentence structures and grammar structures on speaking, listening and reading.

2. Written lessons will include writing Chinese radicals and some simple Chinese characters, as well as proper stroke order.
Students who finish this period of study will be able to communicate simply and directly on daily topics which they are familiar. They will also be able to achieve HSK level 2. 500
Level 2-3 15 Weeks 1. A greater understanding of Chinese sentence structures and grammar
2. Different expressions
Students who finish this period of study will reach a level of basic communication regarding tasks in daily life, study, and work. Students traveling in China will be able to handle most communication tasks they encounter. They will also be able to achieve HSK level 3. 800
Level 3-4 25 Weeks 1. Begin learning words and phrases regarding Chinese culture
.
2. Begin learning Chinese idioms

3. A basic understanding of Chinese history
Students who finish this period of study will be able to discuss a wide range of topics with native speakers.
They will also be able to achieve HSK level 4.
1500
Level 4-5 45 Weeks 1. A deeper understanding of Chinese history, including famous Chinese events and famous Chinese people

2. A deeper understanding of Chinese idioms and Chinese customs
Students who finish this period of study will be able to read Chinese newspapers and magazines, appreciate Chinese films and television, write and deliver full speeches, and communicate with Chinese people at a normal speed. They will also be able to achieve HSK level 5. 2500
Level 5-6 80 Weeks 1. Chinese policies and economy

2. Lessons on ancient Chinese poetry and classical Chinese masterpieces

3. Chinese literature
Students who finish this period of study will achieve a native speaker's level of listening and reading comprehension and will be able to express themselves fluently in written and oral Chinese. They will also be able to achieve HSK level 6. 5000
Notes: The above class hours are not cumulative. This schedule is only a guideline, actual results may be achieved before or after the given dates.
11. What are the weekly schedules like?
08.00 to 08.45 Breakfast on own accord, near school
09.25 to 12.00 Intensive: Chinese lessons Standard:Chinese lessons/ Explore the Environment
12.00 to 12.30 Lunch in school
12.30 to 13.45 Break time
14.00 to 16.35 Intensive: Chinese lessons Standard:Explore the Environment/ Chinese lessons
17.00 to 18.00 Language partner / Wednesday nights: Cultural night
18.00 to 19.00 Dinner at school
19.00 to 21.00 Thursday nights: Social activity, e.g. BBQ
Other times you can use the students lounge to do self study or watch movies.
12. Difference between Intensive and Standard Course loads?

Intensive course students take will all six Chinese lessons each day. Intensive course load is for students who have relatively shorter time but would like to learn as much as possible.

While with the Standard course-load, students will take three Chinese lessons a day (either in the morning or afternoon) Standard course load gives you more free time to experience more Chinese culture, meet and talk with Chinese people, practice what you learned out of class, or just explore the beautiful nature in Yangshuo.

Many students who take Standard Chinese course choose to make use of the other half day to join our regular Taichi or Calligraphy course, or experience the Chinese cooking, Chinese painting, Chinese tea ceremony, Chinese musical instruments, rock-climbing or other outdoor activities organized by Omeida.

If you are interested, please feel free to talk with our course consultant.

13. What qualifications do the teachers have?
Our teachers are all certified language teachers with a minimum of the following qualifications Bachelor’s degree in teaching Chinese as a foreign language Prior Chinese language teaching experience We hire teachers not only on their academic merit or professional experience alone but a great teacher is warm, accessible, enthusiastic and caring.
14. Does Omeida provide a fully immersion environment?

In the class, our teachers always encourage all students to use Chinese as much as they can to talk with teachers and classmates. Only for beginners’ class, if necessary, teachers will use a bit English to explain grammars and sentence structures to help students understand better and more accurate.

Out of class, all our teachers and staff are more than happy to create a Chinese only environment for individual student. While for activities that students at all different levels join in together, we will use some English to help beginners students, these activities including optional cultural lessons which are open and public for all, and weekend excursions, etc.

To learn Chinese language well and fast, it’s extremely helpful to interact with as many as Chinese people and understand Chinese culture. Here at Omeida we spare no effort to create you the immersion environment, and what’s more, to provide you opportunities to meet and make friends with native Chinese students, and learn as much Chinese culture as possible.

15. Can I receive extra help with my Chinese outside of my class?

Yes, we provide a free tutoring option for students outside of class called the language partner program.  This program places Chinese language students into pairs with our native-Chinese students in the English language course, for a daily one-hour sessions (or whatever you and your language partner decide upon).  During these organized sessions, students will help each other improve in the language that they are studying.

If the language partner program feels insufficient, then we’d be happy to organize a specialized class for you that guarantee one-on-one lessons at the times that you choose. Please contact us for the price for one-on-one specialized course.
16. In the event of a personal cancellation, can I get a refund for the remaining lessons?

No, the paid lessons are not refundable.

But we can retain the remaining lessons for you for up to one year. From the day you apply for retaining of the lessons, within one year if you are able to come back to take the lessons, we will make relevant arrangement for you.

Weather and Environment

1. According to the weather,what kind of clothing should I bring ?

Yangshuo is a town belongs to Guilin city, which is in South of China.

Autumn (September to November) is the best time to come to Yangshuo, the weather is moderate and dry and comfortable. Spring usually starts from March, it can be humid and rainy. Summer is from June to August, with the temperature in average at 30C and highest at about 38C, but it won’t last too long, shower is quite often in summer afternoon which brings fresh air and cool down the heat. Winter (December to February) can be very cold due to the humidity, but it rarely snow since the temperature is always above 0 at an average of 5-10C.

A jacket is enough for Spring and Autumn, when the average temperature is about 20C. In Summer T-shirts and pants are good. We suggest you bring a couple of your warmest clothes to Yangshuo if you come in Winter. Anyway, it is very convenient to buy all sorts of clothes in local shops or online when you are in Yangshuo.

2. How big is Yangshuo and what activities are there?

Yangshuo has the population of about 300,000 people living in the area of 1,428km2. It’s a pretty small town. The West street is the center of the town, where there are many cafes/bars/western and Chinese restaurants, which is just 15 mins by bike from school. While if you go to the opposite direction, in just 5 mins walk from Omeida, you will find yourself in the beautiful countryside. Our location perfectly combines the convenient modern life and amazing nature.

Yangshuo is the paradise of outdoor activities. The bucket list is long and you will never get fed up with your life here in 6 months. Activities out of class including biking, hiking, rock-climbing, sight seeing, bamboo rafting, caving, barbecuing, sporting, making friends and practicing your Chinese with local people.

If you want to experience more Chinese culture, we are more than happy to arrange for you cultural lessons like Taichi, Chinese calligraphy, Chinese painting, Chinese cooking, etc. Just let our course consultant know if you are interested in it.

3. Do the local residents speak Mandarin Chinese?
The local residents in Yangshuo all speak Mandarin. Though there is a native Yangshuo dialect, the town has enough tourist traffic that everyone is perfectly used to conversing in Mandarin. Outside of our campus, there shouldn’t be any local language limitations that prevent you from practicing your Chinese.

Travel and Arrival

1. How can I get to Yangshuo?

The closest airport to Yangshuo is Guilin Liangjiang International Airport (KWL) which is about 1.5 hours by taxi to Omeida. If there is not direct flight from your city to Guilin airport, you may fly to one of China’s larger cities, say Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Shanghai or Beijing and from these locations, there are daily flights to Guilin. If requested, we are able to arrange a taxi to pick you up from Guilin airport to school, the cost is 280RMB/taxi one way.

Within China, there are high speed trains connect many cities with Guilin or Yangshuo. The closest train station to Yangshuo town is Yangshuo Train Station which is actually in Xingping, a smaller ancient town about 45 mins by taxi to Yangshuo town. In Guilin there are 3 train stations, Guilin Station, Guilin North Station and Guilin West Station, in which, Guilin Station is the closest and the only one convenient to change a bus to Yangshuo (about 1.5 hours by taxi). No matter which train station you will arrive at, we are more than happy to arrange a taxi to pick you up to school if requested. Just let us know if you need the pick up service.

Please kindly note the taxi we arranged won’t go on highway, if you prefer to go on highway to Yangshuo, please let us know in advance and we will add the toll fee in the quotation.

2. How do I get to Omeida if I come to Yangshuo on my own?

Our address in Chinese is 阳朔县龙岳路49号,欧美达中文书院. It’s easy to get a taxi or motorbike in Yangshuo town or Yangshuo bus station and just show the driver our address so he will drive you to Omeida. Any further help needed please feel free to call office number:+86 773 8812233.

If you need us to arrange a taxi to pick you up from your hotel in Yangshuo or the countryside to school, please just let us know your location and the time you need our driver to meet you.

map of yangshuo

3. Which day and what time should I arrive at Omeida?

If you do the all-inclusive package and live at school, the room is available from Sunday before start of your course. Please try to arrive at school before 4pm, so we have time to show you school and help check in dorm room.

For arrival later than 4pm but before 8pm, our staff who is on duty on the weekend can wait at school and help with checking in, only a 50RMB service fee will be charged.

If you will arrive at school later than 8pm, we are able to book a room in nearby hotel at discounted price of 100RMB.

Please keep us informed of our arrival date and time once finalized.

4. Can I come and live at Omeida a few days before start of my course? 

Usually it’s no problem out of peak time (July&August). Just let us know as early as possible so we can reserve the room for you in advance. The cost for extra days depends on type of rooms you want. It is 40RMB/night/person for a shared room, 60RMB/night for a private dorm room, or 100RMB/night for a luxury private room.

Accommodation

1. How close are the student dorms to campus?
We have four students dorm buildings, all are 2-10 minutes walk from school.
2. What does the standard room include?

The accommodation provided in the all-inclusive package is shared twins bedroom to share with another native Chinese student.

Rooms include:

  • air conditioning and heating
  • ensuite bathroom with sink, shower, toilet, and water heater
  • internet access
  • twin beds with sheets and pillow
  • desk and chair
  • access to use washing machine

not included: toiletries, toilet paper, etc.

To encourage saving energy, we charge 1RMB/kwH to use electricity in your room. The fee is to be shared with your roommate.

3. What if I want my own room?

Private dorm rooms are available with all of the previously mentioned amenities for an additional 100RMB/week.

Or Luxury private rooms are available at an additional 250RMB/week on top of a shared room.

4. Can I change my room/roommate/room type?

Yes, if another room of the same type you booked available, it’s free of charge to change.
If you want to change roommate, you will need to change to another shared room, we won’t ask your roommate to move if only you request to change roommate.
If you want to upgrade to a private room and the room is available, we usually prepare the room and let you move on a Sunday.

5. Can I cook by myself in my room, is there a kitchen area?

In students dormitory there is no kitchen area and students are not allowed to cook in the room.
But private rooms are available in our foreign teachers’ apartment. Usually three people share an apartment where there is a public living room and kitchen area, you can also use the refrigerator in the apartment. However, rooms in that building are usually very limited and if you really need to cook by yourself please book the course and room with us as early as possible.

 6. Is it possible to rent a house and live outside of campus?

Yes, it’s not hard to rent a house near school, but most of the options have similar facilities as school’s dormitory, i.e. single room without kitchen area. And usually the room has private bathroom but no western toilet.
Many landlord tend to sign longer house rental contract, usually longer than 6 months or one year. And usually the electricity, water and internet is not included.
If you really want to rent a house out of school, we are able to arrange a language partner to help you find one after your arrival.

Food and Water

1. I am a vegetarian, can I eat at school canteen?

Yes, school’s canteen serves lunch and dinner on weekdays, mainly routine Chinese dishes and are different from meal to meal. Each meal 6-7 students share a table of food together,  even though the food includes meat (e.g. pork, fish,chicken and duck) there are all kinds of vegetables. Many vegetarian students also eat at school.

2. If I don’t want to have meals at school, can I cancel it and get refund?

Yes, just cancel with us at least one day in advance, so we can cancel it with canteen and refund you the meal fee.

3. I am allergic to certain food(s), is it possible to avoid such food in Yangshuo?

Please make sure to let us know prior to your arrival any allergies or health conditions so we can accommodate best to your needs. By communication well and paying careful attention to the food you ordered/bought, it will be easy for students with food allergies to avoid problems.
Immediately after arrival, we will teach beginner students with allergies the basic Chinese vocabularies and sentences needed if you need to order/buy food on your own. We will also help write a warning with everything you are allergic to on a card, so you can easily take it along with you and show to people any time needed.

4. What is potable water at school/in Yangshuo? 

You can drink directly water from the dispenser or water boiler provided at school and in every of our students’ dormitory. We don’t recommend you drink tap water, but it’s safe to brush your teeth or wash fruits by tap water.
Bottle water is easily get from nearby shops and everywhere in the town.

1. Is Yangshuo a safe town?

Yes, Yangshuo remains a relatively small town that is pretty well protected and is safe for tourists. Local people are very friendly to foreigners. It’s quite common that young girls walk in the streets even late in the evenings. Many foreign people choose to live long time or even permanently in Yangshuo. Like in any place in the world, some tourists got their wallet/phone or bike stolen, however, in comparison to many tourist destinations or big cities in China, Yangshuo is a much safer town to live.

2. Do I need to take any vaccination before coming to China?

The routine vaccinations you took in your own country are fare enough if you want to travel to China. Some students choose to take certain vaccination before come to China but it’s not very necessary. But we still suggest you follow your doctor’s advice concerning pre-departure health checks and vaccinations.

3. Do I need to buy any insurance before I come to China?

We strongly recommend you buy travel and health insurance for your stay in China. For students study for less than 6 months, the normal travel and health insurance by in your own country is fine. For students stay longer than 6 months, in addition to the insurance mention above, we can also help buy medical insurance offered by Chinese insurance company, if requested.

4. What if I have minor disease and need to see a doctor/buy medicines?

We provide 24/7 support for our students in emergency situations.
For minor diseases like cold or stomachache, our staff or your language partner who can speak English will accompany to nearby clinic to see a doctor or go to nearby pharmacy to buy medicines.
In Yangshuo there is a People’s Hospital where it’s possible to do basic health check or tests if necessary. If the medicines bought is not working, or if suggested by the clinic doctor, we will arrange English-speaking staff or language partner to accompany you to the hospital.
Always feel free to contact us if you need any help.

5. Can I get compensation from my insurance company after a doctors visit?

If you just buy normal medicines from pharmacy or get medicines prescribed by a clinic doctor, usually it is not possible to get compensation even if you bought insurance.
The receipts issued by Yangshuo People’s Hospital might be acceptable by your insurance company. But not 100% sure.
If unfortunately your sickness is getting worse, we will help you transfer to the People’s Hospital in Guilin, where there is a Foreign Patience’ Department with more advanced medical devices and provide English speaking service. That hospital also work directly with many overseas insurance companies. If you connect your insurance company with Guilin People’s Hospital, then they accept to provide treatment first and your insurance company pay directly to them later.

6. Can I swim in the river?

No, we strongly suggest you don’t go swimming in the river, even if you believe you are an excellent swimmer. Small rivers can be very dangerous as well, as usually the water is very clean and flows slowly, but actually it is much deeper than it looks like. Every year there are drown tragedies bring huge sadness to the victim’s family.

1. When and how do I pay my remaining fee, after paying my deposit?

We accept full payment of remaining fee before start of your course/program or latest within the first week after your arrival, preferably when we do the enrollment the first day you come for class.
You may choose to use Paypal, wire transfer or Western Union to make the payment. Or after your arrival, we also take Chinese cash RMB, credit card, Apple Pay, Ali-pay, wechat wallet payment.
We don’t take foreign cash as payment. Please note by different ways of payment, there will be commission fee charged by the bank or payment agent, it various from 1~10%.

2. Where can I change money/ get Chinese cash?

The closest Bank of China where you can change money is just 5 minutes by walking from Omeida. It usually closed on Sundays and public holidays, but ATMs are 24/7 available to withdraw cash by your foreign credit card, sometimes debit card is also working.

3. How much money do I need to spend for living in Yangshuo?

Our all-inclusive package covers most of what you need to spend money, if you choose a simple and basic life in Yangshuo, you will just need to spend some money buying breakfast on the weekdays and food on the weekend. In Yangshuo there are so many options for meals, and the prices various from less than 2USD to 30USD a meal. You may spend minimum 100USD/month for food.
Depending what lifestyle you like, for entertainment and social life by spending an average of 300USD ~ 500USD a month you will already have very comfortable life in Yangshuo.

The End