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Moving to Suzhou

What to know if you're moving to Suzhou

With its own rich culture, as well as a welcoming demeanor, Suzhou is a great place for expats to settle. The area offers many opportunities for all skills, tastes, and lifestyles, and although it can be bustling at times, Suzhou also offers some much needed down time. Learn more about making the move to Suzhou in our guide!

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All about China

From the requirements for moving to China and applying for the right visa to avoiding cultural misunderstandings, our practical guide walks you through all the steps to move to China and make it home.

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Relocating to Suzhou

With many types of accommodation in the area, from small, inner city dwellings, to more spacious abodes as you emanate out from the hub, Suzhou should be a consideration for any expat seeking a taste of the East.

About Suzhou

Sat within the Jiangsu Province of Eastern China, Suzhou sits around 95 km west of Shanghai, and covers an area of approximately 8,400 square kilometers, with about one third of this being water. The population in the city itself is in the region of 4.3 million people, rising to a figure around eleven million for the entire administrative area.

The population in the area, which has undergone some significant economic growth in recent years, consists of approximately ninety-seven percent Han Chinese nationals, with only three percent coming from other ethnic groups. A large proportion of these three percent are British expats.

Suzhou is among China’s Top 20 largest cities by population size, and the second largest within Jiangsu Province, behind nearby Nanjing.

The Climate in Suzhou

Suzhou has a rather diverse and interesting climate, best described as humid and sub-tropical. The weather is heavily affected by the monsoon, a fact that is shown by the average monthly rainfall figures, which range from less than 3 mm in November, to over 190 mm in March.

The weather is generally warm in Suzhou, the only exception to this being during winter, when northerly winds blow from Siberia. Peak summer temperatures can reach into the thirties (Celsius), even pushing towards 40°C. Humidity remains around sixty-five to eighty percent all year round.

Visas for China

The visa system for China can be a complex one. You can find a detailed overview of the different visa categories, as well as details on the application process, in our dedicated guide on How to Get a Chinese Visa.

Generally speaking, expats moving to Suzhou in order to work and stay in the country will need a long-term work visa, or Z visa. Documents required to attain this visa include a medical certificate, employment license, and a letter of invitation. Once you have acquired a Z visa and have settled in China, you will need to register your residence and get a temporary residence permit.

Updated on: May 13, 2015
Living

Living in Suzhou

Thanks to its favorable position, Suzhou is an important center for the local economy and home of many diverse businesse...

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Working

Working in Suzhou

Suzhou has recently experienced economic growth nearing ten percent, year on year, and with economic growth come job opp...

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