Getting Around, Shanghai Travel, Transport and Car Rental

(Shanghai, China)

Picture of the Pudong International Airport (PVG)Getting to Shanghai is simple, with most tourists arriving by air at Pudong International Airport, which is located close to the city centre. Alternatively, visitors can travel to Shanghai by train from Beijing, or as far away as Hong Kong. The city is also accessible by bus transport, with a growing number of coach companies servicing long-distance destinations.

Arriving in Shanghai by car is tricky, with all international drivers being required to hold a Chinese licence before being permitted to drive in the country.

Interior view of Pudong International Airport (PVG)

Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG) / Arriving by Air

Address: Yingbin Road, Pudong New Area, Shanghai, 201202, China, CN
Tel: +86 21 6834 1000
Located 30 km / 19 miles from Shanghai, Pudong Airport (PVG) was opened in 1999 and is growing quickly. The airport has two runways and fine passenger facilities. Airlines serving the airport include British Airways, Emirates, Lufthansa and United. There are direct flights to the following international cities - Amsterdam, Barcelona, Hong Kong, London and New York, while domestic flights depart from nearby Shanghai Hongqiao Airport (SHA). A magnetic levitation train, bus transport and metered taxis are all readily available for those wishing to travel into the city.

Shanghai Pudong International Airport Guide

Picture showing central road network

Car Rental

If you really need a car of your own, you will need to also hire a driver. The heavy traffic, Chinese road signs and the general chaos of Chinese roads can be difficult and stressful to master. If you still want to hire and drive your own vehicle in Shanghai, hefty deposits and a Chinese driving licence are necessary.

Book your Shanghai Pudong Airport Car Rental here.

Buses and Coaches

Bus and coach transport can be very slow in Shanghai, but is improving as more and more Chinese choose to travel domestically. Bus tickets are cheaper than rail fares and as the number of services increases, bus tickets are more easily available. Bus stations have few facilities and travellers should buy tickets in person at the ticket office. There are several bus stations sited around the city, but the main transport hub stands across from the Shanghai Stadium at 666 Tianyaoqiao Lu, from where buses leave frequently for a number of local and long-distance destinations. City buses often get very crowded during rush hours and necessitate a good understanding of Mandarin Chinese.

Image showing arriving Transrapid train


The Ministry of Railways operates all trains in China. Trains travel at regular intervals from Beijing and Hong Kong, arriving at Shanghai Railway Station. Reservations, especially for sleepers, should be made three to five days in advance. There are four different classes - soft sleeper, soft seat, hard sleeper and hard seat. The Shanghai metro is clean, efficient, inexpensive and generally very easy to navigate.


In spite of the somewhat alarming metal cages around the drivers, Shanghai taxis are quite reliable, abundant, cheap and a safe way to travel. A range of companies run Shanghai taxis, almost all of which are locally manufactured Volkswagens. All taxis are metered, but drivers rarely speak any English, so maps and addresses written in Chinese characters are indispensable tools for foreigners.