Beijing 2008 Olympic and Paralympic Games

The Beijing Olympic Games begin on August 8 2008 and run until August 24.  The Beijing Paralympic games will take place between September 6 and September 17. 

Our advice for spectators will be updated in the run up to the games. Our travel advice for China is also updated regularly.

We’ve produced two leaflets, which you can download from the column on the right. One has information for before you go and you’ll receive a copy with your visa from the Chinese Embassy.  The other has information for when you are there - you will receive that with your event tickets in Beijing.

Before you go

Passports and visas:

  • your passport should be valid for six months when you enter China
  • you will also need to obtain a visa in advance from the Chinese Embassy in London
  • if you’re travelling from mainland China to Hong Kong you will need a double or multiple entry visa to get back onto the mainland.

Tickets for Olympic events

Only buy tickets from official suppliers. The only supplier in the UK is Sportsworld.


Make sure you have proof of your accommodation before you travel – you shouldn’t arrive in China without a hotel reservation or other confirmed accommodation.

Remember most hotels in Olympics cities have been booked up months in advance.

Whilst you’re there

Staying safe:

  • carry your passport with you at all times – police may carry out random checks
  • leave copies of your passport and other important documents at the hotel and take another copy with you
  • avoid public demonstrations and do not distribute political literature – you may be arrested if you do so without permission from the Chinese authorities 
  • public displays of drunkenness are generally unacceptable and are likely to cause offence.

Transport:A Japanese gymnast competes in the 2000 Syndney Olympics

  • taxis are plentiful and generally safe but avoid taxis which try to negotiate a price before your journey - all taxis are fitted with meters
  • a Taxi Book is available from most bookshops – you can use it to show your driver where you want to go
  • the underground is also a cheap and safe way to get around – buy a ticket from the kiosk before getting on a train
  • most taxis and private cars won’t be allowed near the main Olympic areas, so it’s best to use public transport when travelling to events.

British Embassy Beijing

11 Guang Hua Lu
Jian Guo Men Wai
Beijing 100600

Telephone: (86) (10) 5192 4000

Emergency numbers

Police - 110

Medical - 120

Fire - 119

See Also

Travel advice - China

Travel checklist

Country profile - China

Useful Links

Beijing Olympics - offical website

Chinese Embassy in London - for information on visas

Sportsworld - for event tickets

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