Covering everything you need to know about Shanghai and then some, Shanghai Expat is a fantastic resource for new arrivals or those looking to make the move to the PRC.
The site has a very active forums with a great number of “for sale” posts in particular as well as things like language exchange and other classifieds. Other noteworthy sections include the very popular Personals; Discounts, which provides users with health, dining, and language study deals; an up-to-date events page; and the impressive housing classifieds section, which is searchable and a great way to gauge prices and areas to live in the city.
Shanghai Expat boasts what is arguably one of China’s best job boards for non-English teaching positions with extensive, updated listings covering every industry, be it media, communications, hospitality, tourism, volunteering, commerce, or anything else.
Interesting articles covering the day-to-day in the city as well as culture, arts, and interviews, are updated frequently and are a good tool for navigating expat life. Topics include information on international schools, employability and Mandarin, diet, insight into being a new arrival in Shanghai, restaurant reviews, travel immunizations, and a vast range of other commentary and interviews.
Slick, creative, and a little sexy, SmartShanghai stands out from the city site pack with its irreverence, urban insights and focus on culture and nightlife. The events section is particularly useful to expats at it is broken up to cover all the necessities: brunch and lunch deals, ladies nights, happy hours and open bars. There is also coverage for upcoming art exhibitions, concerts, literary events, plays, and film & cinema.
SmartShanghai’s Essential Guide: Nightlife is an excellent, well-written resource in itself for all you need to know about Shanghai’s legendary clubbing and bar scene. A Happy Hour map, guide to free drinking, and a nightlife ticket delivery service are included alongside sections on clubbing along the Bund, lounges, dive bars and pubs, local watering holes and rock and jazz bars.
The Shopping, and Wellbeing sections feature comprehensive reviews and photos of all the hot therapeutic and retail spots in town. The Activities guide is also an excellent resource and has listings for everything from fencing and bowling to mini golf and amusement parks. It also contains guides on topics such as the best swimming pools in the city and more offbeat areas like a local gun club and a “mystery house”.
Street and metro maps of Shanghai are also available on the site.
In its 13th year of publication, Shanghai CityWeekend is an entertainment and lifestyle magazine that comes out every two weeks and cover the best Shanghai has to offer. With focus on events the website version of CW is useful as the TODAY section tells users exactly what is going on in the city right now, and is categorized by type of event (parties, concerts, performances, film, etc) as well as deals (food, drink, spa, shopping).
CityWeekend has thorough restaurant listings broken down by type of cuisine, plus features a “best of 2013” section. The nightlife section also features a best of and has a searchable bar/club directory. Users can leave their own reviews and star ratings on the dining and drinking listings, handy for readers to see what locals and laowai are loving and hating.
The other usual sections are included: jobs, personals, classifieds, and so forth. What stands out are the directories, which have listings for places like supermarkets and cinemas, as well as a guide to volunteering in Shanghai. The Expat Life section is also very helpful and has information on finding a job, finding housing, hospitals, and must-have apps for expats.