It took some time, but Mirian and I now both have our Chinese driver’s license. That means one of many obstacles to our final goal of driving back to Holland from Shanghai has been taken. We already have used our newly gained right quite a lot in Shanghai and around. We have Avis as a very convenient neighbour here in Shanghai, so renting a car is as easy as it gets. And it’s fairly inexpensive as well. For about 140-200 yuan we can drive away with a nice car for a day.

The first couple of minutes driving in Shanghai and on the express ways where a bit nerve racking, but soon we got used to the traffic behaviour of the Chines and pure joy sat in as we felt the ultimate freedom to be released of annoying taxi drivers or an overloaded public transport system. Of course we still bike and scooter a lot as well but for little trips to Hangzhou, Suzhou or Kunshan or even bigger trips in the rest of China we now can drive our selves. We especially enjoyed a trip to Longjing tea village near Hangzhou and a visit to Dianshan Lake where friends have a really nice summer retreat at the lake.

Of course, nothing beats your own car, so that’s what we’re looking for right now. I already visited some second hand car markets in Shanghai, but the supply of 4×4 vehicles is still rather small. And the ones that are available are quite new and therefore rather expensive. So if anyone knows of a second hand Toyota Landcruiser or Mitsubishi Pajero or Nissan Patrol or any other similar car, please do get in touch with us. We’re interested!