Domestic mail delivery is exceedingly fast and cheap. Within some cities, there is often same-day delivery; between large cities, delivery is usually overnight. International mail, too, is efficient. Postal services are usually provided at hotel desks. Large hotels have mailboxes and sell stamps for letters, post cards and parcels. Post offices, with eye-catching green emblems, are usually found on main streets, at railway stations, the airport and major scenic spots. They are open seven days a week from 9:00-17:00. DHL, UPS, EMS, TNT and FedEx provide express mail services for urgent documents, parcels and other items to more than 10,000 cities in 170 countries and regions. EMS is the only official one in China that can handle private letters and has particular advantage handling mail within China. Many express delivery services have offices in major hotels and office buildings. Check the building directory in the lobby for their locations.
Local calls in the hotels are usually free of charge. Direct long-distance dials (DDD) can be made from most hotels to some 2,000 localities throughout China. International calls made from hotels typically have high surcharges, from 10 to 20 percent, added to the already high IDD rates. Alternatively, you may look for roadside kiosks with the IDD and DDD sign. Most post offices provide the IDD and DDD service. If your call between 24:00 and 07:00 the next morning, it is just half the daytime price. Country code for China is 86. To call abroad, dial 00, then the country code and telephone number. Like many nations expanding their domestic telephone networks, China's telephone numbers can change without too much fanfare. If you hear a funny ringing sound on the line and can't get through, the number may have changed.