What is the typical dress code at work and in public places? Is formal dress ever required?

Business casual, except for special events. - May 2019

Fairly formal. Get clothes made here or in Hong Kong. - Nov 2018

Biz casual. Shorts in the summer when you're not at work. It's pretty casual overall. - Nov 2015

Business at work, anything goes in public. China does a real number on clothes and shoes, for some reason- I had multiple pairs of shoes just disintegrate on me, and I wasn't the only one. On the bright side, you can get some nice, new suits made for yourself while you're there. - Aug 2014

Everything goes! Seriously. Do you want to wear a miniskirt to work? Go for it. You want to wear raggedy jeans and Converse? Go for it. There IS a dress code where I work, but it is not enforced---especially not among local staff. - May 2013

Work: attire at the consulate appears to be business casual for most, depending on what office you're in. Public: anything goes, but everything is pretty casual. You're foreign, you'll get stared at no matter what, so don't worry too much about trying to fit in. - Apr 2013

Dress code is pretty casual depending upon what section you work in. - Jan 2013

Local females wear the most revealing clothes I have ever seen. The shortest skirts and highest heels ever. it is like a contest. Guys dress casual. - Oct 2011

Americans at my work wear business casual. Chinese, though, tend to wear whatever they interpret "business casual" to mean, which can range from jeans and a logo'd t-shirt to fishnet stockings and a miniskirt (with a logo'd t-shirt).Some dress better than others. In public you'll see lots of women in high heels and short skirts, especially in the summer. - May 2011

Dress code at the consulate is professional. In public, most people wear jeans and dark clothing. Not many in shorts. - Jul 2009

Comparable to the U.S. - Jan 2009

New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More