Telephone is becoming a necessity in our daily life. Telephone service in China is not greatly different from other countries'. However, to make a phone call when you touring around China, you may refer to the following for help:
In China, telephone services are operated by three operators: China Mobile, Unicom, and Telecom, among which China Mobile and Unicom mainly provide mobile telecommunication service, while China Telecom provides fixed telephone, mobile telecommunication, and broadband internet services.
Mobile phone has grown to be the main telecommunication method. The latest statistics (2011) show that the number of Chinese mobile phone users reached 900,000,000. Therefore, public phone boxes are less used. However, telephone bars, where you can make calls at a relatively low rate, are still widely used, especially in schools and countryside.
Most hotels provide IDD (International Direct Dial) and DDD (Domestic Direct Dial) services, so if you are on a short-term tour, you could just use the telephone in the hotel you stay. However, Chinatour360 reminds you to be clear about the charges before you make an international call. You can also make international phone calls from telephone bars which usually charges CNY 0.1 per minute for domestic calls and CNY 2 - 5 per minute for international calls. If you plan to take a long-term China tour, you should buy a telephone card after you arrive, though you should check your mobile phone is suitable for the SIM card beforehand.
When making an international phone call from China, dial "00" before the country code, and then dial the area code and the telephone number. To call a Chinese number from other countries, you need to dial the international dialing prefix followed by 86 + area code + fixed telephone number or international dialing prefix followed by 86 + mobile phone number.
Here is a table of how to dial different destinations:
a. Between phones (mobile or fixed) in the same city: dial the number directly;
b. From a phone (mobile or fixed) to a fixed phone in a different city: area code of the target city + phone number;
c. A fixed telephone to a mobile phone in a different city: 0 + mobile phone number;
d. A mobile phone to a mobile phone in a different city: dial the number directly.