Visiting 2010 World Expo

The 2010 World Expo officially opened on China’s Labour Day, May 1st, in Shanghai’s New Pudong district along both sides of the Huangpu river, between the Lupu and Nanpu bridges.

I visited the Expo on the 2nd day and 2nd day of China’s Labour Day holiday. It was a very hot 30C sunny Sunday in Shanghai fortunately it was dry and not humid. Due to the size of the Expo and the number of entrances, it was misleading as to how crowded the Expo was when I arrived at Gate 5-3 at 11:30 in the morning.

Ticket Prices

Peak Day – Single Day Entry Ticket RMB200.00
Peak Day – Special Administration Ticket RMB120.00
Standard Day – Single Day Entry Ticket RMB160.00
Standard Day – Special Administration Ticket RMB100.00
3 Days Entry Ticket RMB400.00
7 Days Entry Ticket RMB900.00
Evening Entry Ticket RMB90.00

The following days are considered “Peak Day”:

2010.05.01 – 03: Labor Day Holiday
2010.10.01 – 07: National Day Holiday
2010.10.25 – 30: last week before the closing date

The following are defined as Special Administration:

These tickets are available for the disabled, the senior citizens (born on or before December 31, 1950), students with valid IDs, children above 1.2m and Chinese military personnel on active duty. Valid IDs must be presented to during ticket purchase and entry into Expo.

Note that only children under the height of 1.2m are allow into Expo free of charge. Everyone else require to purchase a ticket.

Only Peak Day tickets have entry date printed on the ticket. If this Peak Day ticket is not used on the specified date, it can be used as a Standard Day entry ticket.

Evening tickets can only be purchase at Expo site on the same day. All other ticket types can be purchase in advance at authorized ticket outlets.

Transportation to Expo Site

The easiest is to take an Expo taxi, the only type of taxi allowed into the grounds of Expo site.

Alternatively you can also take the Metro (subway). Line 13 is a special line that has two dedicated stops: Lupo Bridge and Shibo Avenue, within the Expo grounds.

I found out the hard way that there is no taxi stand; at least not ones that can be found or signage to show where it is, and hailing a taxi is a free-for-all experience, making it even more dangerous as you are now competing with mainland Chinese.

Calling the Expo Taxi number (96822) does not help, as they claim that they cannot book any taxi, but drivers of any vacant taxis say they had already been booked. It was a total chaos. We ended up calling our hotel concierge for help; this is another reason to stay at a reputable hotel when in China.

Visiting Pavilions

If I was to wait in line for the pavilions I visited I would not have visited so many pavilions during my 6 hours of visit. Fortunately, because I knew people at the pavilions, I was able to get into: UK, Africa, Canada, Chile, Cuba, Australia, New Zealand and Vietnam pavilions through VIP entrances.

The people waiting in lines at the “specially built” pavilions are packed in so close, due to the typical mainland Chinese culture of not-wanting-to-be-left-out mentality, it is really scary to go into the lines. Not to mention that majority of the lines do not have any cover overhead, making heat stroke a definite danger.

Of all the pavilions I visited, the Canada and Chile pavilions were the only ones worth visiting. All the other pavilions were showing information I could have received via their respective Tourist Bureau web sites. Even the UK Pavilion was a bit disappointing other than having the opportunity to see the structure up close.

You can see a photo documentary of my visit at my Flickr photo set.

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