Warnings and Dangers in Beijing: Toilets
No matter where you are in the world, nature is going to eventually call. When you’re prepared for the differences you’ll find in a Beijing toilet, you’ll have an easier time making it through.
What to Expect
Many of the public toilets in Beijing are squat toilets. Rather than sitting on them, you’re supposed to squat over them to do your business. Bathrooms in Beijing may also not be very well maintained, so they can be smelly and dirty. In some cases, there may not even be doors separating toilets, so others will see you while you use the toilet. In general, the differences between these toilets and what you’d find in the Western world can be hard to navigate.
Using a Squat Toilet
Spread your feet on either side of the hole. Pull your pants down as low as possible. This makes it less likely that a wayward stream of urine will hit your clothes. Squat as low as possible before relieving yourself. In some cases, there is a metal bar that you can use for balance, but you may need to rely on your own sense of balance.
There may be a sign telling you not to flush toilet paper because the pipes cannot handle it. In these cases, there will be a bucket where you are expected to place the used toilet paper.
Carry a package of tissues with you wherever you go. It’s not uncommon for public toilets to not have toilet paper.
If you strongly prefer Western toilets, you’re more likely to find them in high-end shopping areas, Western restaurants and pricier hotels.
Editor’s Note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about using public toilets in Beijing.