I Flew To Beijing During The Coronavirus Pandemic (Guest Post)

Filed Under: Advice, Travel

My college friend Brian lives in China, where he runs a tour company (aka the amazing food tour we took in Phnom Penh!). He and his wife flew back to Beijing last weekend, and when I saw his story on Instagram and how dramatically different the immigration experience is to even the “enhanced measures” in the U.S., I asked if he’d be willing to share the experience in a blog post. 

There has been such a lack of real/trustworthy info about China’s management of this pandemic. Hopefully seeing a first-hand account of the extreme measures being taken (even now!) helps to both explain why the new case count is dropping in China, and gives some insight into how seriously we need to be taking this virus. — Tiffany


I live in China, but I’ve spent the last seven weeks doing everything I can to avoid being there.

When the virus first started spreading, my wife and I left for a planned vacation on the beaches of Thailand. After seeing the situation worsen after we left, we cancelled our return flight and stayed in SE Asia.

It was a stressful time, as we own a tour company whose business completely stopped overnight, but we made the best of it while working with our team remotely and enjoying the freedoms outside of inevitable self-quarantine back home.

It was also stressful because we could never plan more than a few days ahead. Foreign governments were constantly implementing travel bans that made international travel difficult. While in the back of our mind the United States, my homeland, was a realistic last stop, that too became a risky move.

So in the end we decided to go back to China.

Why? Throughout our travels over the last seven weeks, the lack of awareness and severity from the general public has been very apparent. In China, where wearing face-masks is a daily habit for many, there is a strong culture of obedience.

The data behind the slowing spread of the virus in China is one thing, but understanding the government control and culture behind it was the most important factor in our decision.

So we went.

Arriving at the Beijing Airport

We arrived on Saturday, March 14, 2020. We flew from Bangkok, via Hong Kong, to Beijing, and landed at approximately 1PM local time. Although we had read some stories online, we weren’t exactly sure what to expect or how long the arrival process would take. We did know we would be forced to quarantine for 14 days, likely at home.

1:20 PM

After sitting on the plane for about 20 minutes, passengers slowly started to alight. Airport staff were doing their best to control congestion and allow social distancing inside the airport, so they let us off the plane in groups of about 15 people.

Each passenger’s temperature was checked as we stepped off the plane by three individuals in hazmat suits.

2:00 PM

A short walk from the jetway, a station was set up where each passenger was individually evaluated. We each had to complete a form that outlined our recent travel history along with a declaration of any virus symptoms we have.

The form was given to a staff member who asked follow-up questions and took each passenger’s temperature. Immediately following this station, each passenger walked down a long corridor with multiple temperature guns set up, where additional staff members watched monitors to assess individual body temperatures.

2:15 PM

The airport was very quiet and the flow had been completely reorganized. All staff members, whether medical professionals or cleaning staff, were dressed in full hazmat suits.

After proceeding through make-shift passport control booths, we funneled into a room where our bags were lined up and waiting for us since we were nowhere near the traditional baggage claim area. This is when things started getting a bit strange.

2:45 PM

After grabbing our luggage, we were asked to wait in a line and it was initially unclear what it was for. After about 20 minutes, we boarded shuttle buses without being told where we were going.

The first two rows of the shuttle bus were blocked by a mop handle, and the driver, dressed in a hazmat suit, was separated by a layer of plastic. The shuttle was escorted by a police car until we arrived at our destination.

Additional off-site screening

3:15 PM

The destination was an off-site exhibition hall. Upon entering, there were stations set up for each district in Beijing. There was also a separate area for people transiting to other domestic destinations. After finding our district’s table, we told them where we came from and where we lived, and then registered our passport and personal details.

In China, each building or community complex is overseen by staff members who we had already been in contact with regarding our arrival. Since at this time home quarantine was still an option, we were told that we would be allowed to go to our apartment for 14 day quarantine. However, we were not allowed to get there on our own, so we had to wait for a private vehicle to take us directly to our home.

3:45 PM

The waiting area was very large and chairs were spread out one meter apart from each other for social distancing. The room was also covered in different propaganda slogans, such as “As long as you need help, we will be at your side.”

Another favorite was “We isolate the virus but not the love,” and “We are all fighters but not outsiders.”

After about 30 minutes we were told our transportation was ready to leave.

Going home to quarantine

4:30 PM

The shuttle bus had two staff members and again they were separated by a layer of plastic. There were a total of four passengers in the shuttle, and we were all going to the same district within a few minutes drive of each other – it was very well organized.

I noticed that the streets were not completely quiet, there was traffic on the roads and people on the sidewalks. While many restaurants and shops are still closed, parks are open and people were enjoying the fresh air.

Due to the strict quarantine rules that have been in place for almost two months, everyone with the virus is in a medical facility, and not in public.

Upon arrival at our community, one staff member left the shuttle and escorted us.

We were met with management from our community, who were expecting us, to fill out more paperwork and contracts regarding our 14 day home quarantine.

We were given a thermometer which we need to use to report our temperature once per day, and were told that someone would stop by daily to check on us and take out our garbage.

Since we live in a residential area, the road leading to our apartment has been recently blocked with a gate and security. Everyone coming in or out of that gate needs to show a special card that shows they are “clear” to pass. Their temperature is also taken each time they come or go.

We will not receive our “special cards” until our 14 day quarantine is over.

Thoughts on the quarantine

Food and grocery delivery is always very easy and common in China, and now is no different. We are able to order deliveries to our apartment, and delivery staff must first check in at this gate. They are then able to drop our delivery outside our door and we can collect it after they leave. There are no shortages of food or supplies and we have already had multiple deliveries.

While I’m looking forward to getting outside and walking around, life seems pretty calm. For seven weeks, everyone in China has been staying inside and distancing themselves. Medical facilities in places like Beijing are available and, from what I’ve read, very efficient in helping people who have the virus.

At the time of writing, the only new cases in cities like Beijing are from international arrivals which has prompted officials to require hotel quarantine for all arrivals (implemented just two days after we landed).


Brian Bergey is CEO of Lost Plate Food Tours, a culinary tour company based in China with tours throughout Asia and North America. He also co-founded Tourflow, which gives tour operators insights into their business through analytics and business intelligence. He is a regular speaker at industry events such as Arival and ITB.

Brian lives in Beijing with his wife, and can often be found where he grew up in Portland, Oregon.

Comments
  1. Thanks Brian for the detailed point of view.
    I had no idea how careful/how many checks China implemented to control the spread of the virus.
    When I compare that to what I see in New York, and what I read about European countries, it seems that The West sill has a long way to go.

  2. I think it was on this site, anyway, it was announced that China Southern was doing some sporadic flights to several US cities. How much do you want to bet some ultra rich Chinese are on those flights to be in a safer country…

  3. Ha, ha; “culture of obedience”. Nice code words. That’s what brutal communist control will do.

  4. Amazing, China is definitely the safest place right now. I wish our government could learn from them

  5. We evac’d on 2-4-2020. I know this report is true cause I have friends who already shared. The measures China took were soooo crazy, but to my surprise my husband is now safer than me.

  6. Wow, that is eye opening and shows how far away the rest of the world is from effective actions to stop spreading the virus.

  7. @Willy – in times like this, I’d rather a ‘brutal communist control’ with as few deaths as possible, than the disaster that is waiting to unfold in some other other parts of the world.

  8. This is how you quarantine. This is how to properly deal with epidemics.

    And the responses from people like @Willy shows why the Western world would never effectively control this. US can’t even take away guns. In normal times we abuse the race card. In bad times we will abuse the human rights card. In worst times we abuse the race+human rights+unconstitutional card.

  9. I’m really sad to see people commenting something like brutal communist control. To be fair, the culture of obedience should be more accurately represented as culture of willingness to inconvenience oneself for community benefit. Everyone in China knew how dangerous and tricky this virus is and is willing to keep social distance and stay at home for an extended period of time. There isn’t as many quarantine violations as there are in Europe now, which the government urge people to stay at home and practice social distance but there are still numbers of people who doesn’t really care.

    This virus is not a joke and this kind of strong measure is needed to contain it and ensure the safety of the general public.

    Of course, haters are gonna hate. But it’s really nice to have this guest post telling the true story of what effort has been made in China to the world, as these shouldn’t be overlooked.

  10. @Aaron

    So are you trying to accuse Brian of being a CCTV reporter, HK separatist, Chinese spy, propaganda machine, agents of the CCP, or a Communist?

    From what I see, this is as trustworthy and idependent as it gets.

    You should go back to brainwash those dumb HK kids. It’s a good time now, you can legally wear face masks to cowardly hide your identities now.

  11. @Eskimo,
    “This is how you quarantine. This is how to properly deal with epidemics.

    And the responses from people like @Willy shows why the Western world would never effectively control this.”

    If what it takes is a Communist dictatorship + a command economy, I’ll take the Western alternative, even with its current shortcomings, thank you very much.

  12. @ Eskimo,

    “You should go back to brainwash those dumb HK kids. It’s a good time now, you can legally wear face masks to cowardly hide your identities now.”

    Xi Jinping thanks you for your service.

  13. If the writer reads the comments I’m curious about:
    1. What languages are used for this?
    2. While you are waiting in the various lines do you have access to bathrooms?

    While I have many issues with China, too many Americans are living in the past. We no longer lead in longevity, math/science, etc. People just refuse to acknowledge our problems and they are being shown right now with shortages of very necessary medical supplies even including seemingly trivial items like cotton swabs not to mention other protecting equipment.

    There are a lot of good people here in the US but I fear too many others have gone down the wrong path.

  14. @ Reaper:
    “If what it takes is a Communist dictatorship + a command economy, I’ll take the Western alternative, even with its current shortcomings, thank you very much.”

    You nailed it. No way is this an example. This opens the floodgate for total control.

  15. I need to fly back at some point in April, as soon as schools start reopening. We’ll see how that goes.

  16. Total deaths from coronavirus will be less than 0.1% of Communist Party policies, Cultural Revolution and Great Leap Forward.
    Authoritarian regimes can take authoritarian steps (though not necessarily effectively, vide Persia currently), which almost always comes with a lot of unnecessary death and suffering in the long-term.

  17. Thank you, Brian, thank you Tiffany! This should be required reading by all government officials in the USA; federal, state, and local. Perhaps we should send a link to those representing each of us.

  18. Unfortunate the Communist authorities in China don’t appear to capable of, or willing, to exert this same level of control over public health and sanitation issues, such as open air wet markets.

  19. @Reaper @Betty @Cornelius

    The correct way to frame this is that in normal times, we don’t want to live under total control. But unfortunately seeing what happened in Italy, and disturbing trends in the rest of Europe (where I live) and even the US right now, I’d take more control than not. There are laws in all countries reserved for ‘war’ times like this.

  20. For the most part China has been great. But once the US recovers from the chinese virus there will be repercussions.

  21. The US is screwed. Mom landed at lax from gru the other day and she said it was business like usual. No questions, no precautions, nothing.

  22. Different political systems have different advantages.

    When it comes to fighting against a highly contageous and deadly virus, I can say with high confidence that a centralized system is much, much more effective.

    The comment section shows exactly why Europe is so out control right now (after government issued quarentine instructions, people went on protests and parades, because you know, freedom), and U.S is following their footstep.

    Before you sing your freedom song, take a look at the bodies piling up in Italy.

  23. Thankfully the Chinese Communist Party had the foresight to put all the Uighur in reeducation camps to protect them from COVID-19!

    Also, really odd that social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Google and the like are restricted in China if all there is to share with the west is good news like the steps put in place to manage COVID-19. Do the CCP apologists exercising their freedom of speech here have an answer for that?

  24. this is easily achieved if your civil liberties are never there to begin with. In a free society(China is not), there will always chaos when any government try to impose their will even if its for everyone’s benefit.

  25. @dave

    Use VPN. There is nothing that the great firewall can block if you try (works even with little effort). CCP lost control when China has internet.
    And the irony of your Uighur sarcasm is we also have a place called Guantanamo Bay.
    We treat ISIS the same as Chinese treats Uighur. We are probably worse since we bombed the hell out of Iraq. Every government, regardless of system, all seek power and control over their population. Some just flex its muscle in more discreet ways. (Hello NSA)
    Having freedom of speech doesn’t make us immune to propaganda or fake news. It makes us even more prone to it.

    @Jay
    Disagree.
    If people are civilized, even with civil liberties in a free society, there will be little to no chaos.
    If people are uncivilized you get people slapping flight attendants, riots in Costco for water, people with 2 years TP supply. It happens in China too, it just hardly make it on the news.

  26. Beijing is winning the propaganda war…something unthinkable even a couple of weeks ago.
    They failed to take action to control the vile wet markets ( not only those in Wuhan, but all over China ) selling exotic species for human ( garbage) consumption, eg, koala bears, pangolins, civet cats, hedgehogs, ( all of them kept in squalor, treated in the cruelest manner, eventually slaughtered on demand for the 0.0001% of the Chinese population interested in such things)….all this despite knowing the risks from the SARS outbreak which had originated the same way.
    They lied, as they had with SARS about the location, extent, nature and severity of COVID, just as they had with SARS; then they obfuscated, delayed and failed to share information. They harassed , bullied and threatened those who sought to warn the public and expose the lies.
    When other countries decided, with an abundance of caution, to restrict visitation from China, Beijing shrieked about racism, loudly and endlessly (…ironically now doing exactly the same thing themselves).
    Now, with ghastly irony, they want to roll out the Silk Road Health Highway Initiative, with Italy the first target. Seriously, their hides are as thick as those of elephants.
    For sure they have been successful in controlling the spread within their borders. But Beijing is culpable: their gross incompetence led directly to the virus crossing over in the first place. They deserve opprobrium for these failures: hundreds of thousands will die as a direct consequence of their inaction, not that Beijing could care two hoots about that, so long as their own power is not diminished.
    Now a Beijing tries to take on the role of honest broker, helping others through the crisis. Absolute classic wolf in sheep’s clothing. Never believe them , never trust them, never give them a foot in the door…they’d sell their own grandmothers for sixpence.

  27. We loved our lost plate tours in Shangahi and Beijing
    All the best to the founder and the guides! May your business pick up soon!

  28. @Aaron >> True, but China isn’t exactly the most trustworthy when it comes to things like this…

    The US sure as shit isn’t either.

    Purposely shorting testing kits to ensure the number of positive cases is under-reported is a page torn from the “Communism for Dummies” handbook.

    Not saying you’re wrong, just telling it like it is.

  29. @paolo are you fxxxing high on sth.. talking about brainwashing.. the West do a far better job than China.. you are free and you have rights… your so called freedom and rights most Chinese people do too. I work in China for a few months in a year… I never for once sec felt I had my freedom restricted.. rather I don’t need to worry about encountering kids with knives or racists with white supremacy ideology.

  30. @Eskimo. Civility is a matter of interpretation. Different cultures see things differently. Look at Italy which now has more deaths than China. Are you saying that Italians are not civilized people?
    Bottom line is that it easier to control the behavior of people if the government already controls them. There are far more variables in place that people being civilized. Here in the US, minimum wage workers does not have the a choice but to go out there and continue to earn a living because it’s not an option for them to just stay home. In my opinion, Chinese are no more civilized than any other country but they just don’t have the choice to go against their government.

  31. TW – Chinese people are free to criticize the CCP? Prove it – send us the links.
    No racism? You must not be Japanese, black or Muslim!
    Knives did you say? Here are your knives! Would you like more links or is this sufficient? Bonus: I threw in a school bombing for free!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/School_attacks_in_China_(2010%E2%80%9312)
    https://newrepublic.com/article/151994/china-many-school-stabbings
    https://www.scmp.com/news/china/policies-politics/article/2143776/seven-schoolchildren-killed-china-knife-attack-blamed
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Xuzhou_kindergarten_bombing

  32. This is very informative. I flew to India 3 times and Singapore 6 times since January. While entry into India was chaotic; they have been doing temperature screenings since January and making all passengers from Asian countries (and then European countries) fill out health forms. Singapore was very well organized with temperature guns all around the airport and no inconvenience to travelers. Meanwhile, my latest travel back to the States a couple of days was not reassuring. The CDC did board the aircraft and gave forms to fill out but no one took my temperature and they only seemed to be concerned about China (a little late) even though I was landing from Paris. I am isolating myself for the next 2 weeks even though I feel fine. But the contrast in how different countries are handling this outbreak is interesting to see.

  33. @Peter
    No, “everyone” didn’t “know”. There were plenty of them that tried to evade quarantine and border control to get to where they wanted to go. When you concentrate power in the government, they are bound to be more effective at certain things, but I wouldn’t trade civil liberties for it (something that is fragile, and definitely not the default way things are).

    The other negatives with authoritarianism: they try to censor people like doctors who try to warn others of an emerging outbreak (so lets not forget WHY there’s an international outbreak now, even if the communist party wants to pretend like they’re a good world citizen, it’s really their mess to begin with). And when they try to instate stupid policies, it’s also executed effectively (which, in the case of the Cultural Revolution, very effectively caused the deaths of tens of millions).

  34. Thank you for this. I’m concerned that we Americans have become so spoiled that we won’t be able to adhere to a “reasonable” guideline. My home is directly next to a former railroad line that was converted to a park (similar to the Hi Line in NY). It’s been a great boom for the local area and was constructed over 20+ years ago with expansions over the years.

    It’s PACKED now despite the guidelines for social distancing. SMH. Fortunately there’s another large city park just a few blocks away so I’m able to walk through my neighborhood and walk the perimeter of that park without coming into close contact with others as opposed to thousands on a crowded extra wide sidewalk.

    Think people!

  35. @Jay

    Why are you trying to use death toll as a measurement at civility, completely unrelated.
    I’m going to blame the Italian cheek kissing for spreading the virus. Has nothing to do with being civil.
    But the rest, I agree. Chinese are more afraid of loud voice big brother even if US big brother is much nastier but more discreet.

    Now to make this topic even more fun, where should I insert Bernie into the comments.

  36. I am glad this article shows such a tremendous response from China albeit too late to save the other thousands in the world that died and will continue to die. Maybe I missed it but has anyone taken responsibility for the global human and economic carnage resulting from Covid-19? I don’t care how obedient your culture is or how central control works. I do care about living in a mutually respectful world where my life in Canada is as important as anyone else. If the Chinese government is so capable it can easily shut down the origin of the virus. The timelines on spread of the disease clearly show lack of action in the first couple of months. So IMHO this article seems very one sided. World experts have opined repeatedly to no avail. The markets continue.
    People have died, this article is not representative of what occurred from Dec 20th till Global spread of the disease from China.

  37. The March 14th entry was perfect. What happened from Dec 20th to Global pandemic? Obviously people infected with the disease travelled. The authors 7 week timeline takes them to January end for starting travel. This is self explanatory. IMHO we don’t need China airport entry stories while people are dying, sick and going bankrupt around the world.

  38. Meanwhile in the US, emergency room nurses are seeing COVID-19 patients without any masks or PPE.

    Compare this to how the airport workers in China are wearing full head to toe protective gear.

    Things are on track to be way worse here than in Italy. The only questions is how much worse

  39. @Eskimo
    I’m not. I’m just trying to point out that being civil has little to do on what’s happening in China according to the above article. Chaos happens when their sense of freedom is threatened. The article shows how discipline and obedient Chinese citizens are and described it just a culture of obedience. We all know that culture of obedience is the direct results of the Chinese government’s control over it’s citizens.
    Let’s just all hope that this will be all over soon.

  40. With all due respect to OMAAT. This could be misconstrued as positive propaganda. You should be more sensitive to the entire world that is still suffering. You post daily updates about the suffering. The author travelled for 7 weeks, that is irresponsible and he had time to have that retrospective view. The disease spread because of travel. My business is closed and 18 people have to be supported for 3-6 weeks. This virus originated in markets that produced SARS etc when will this stop? Can the author please let us know what initiatives the government has to stop the markets?

  41. @Renaldo Pinto

    I think the takeaway here is that the US and other countries need to adopt stronger measures if we want to reduce the number of infections and not end up in an even worse situation.
    We have nurses in some emergency rooms without masks seeing COVID-19 patients.
    Airport staff are getting infected because of lack of PPE. By comparison, you can see in Asia that all aspects of society are geared toward reducing infection even at the entrance to residential apartments

  42. @Texas MD
    Not in Canada. The article speaks about measures in place 3 months after the original outbreak. It doesn’t address the evolution of the pandemic and processes in place during the exponential increase in numbers. It’s a Pandemic because they closed the stable door after the horse had bolted.

  43. @ TW
    Ok, so you’re one of the ‘I’ve been to China for 5 minutes and know everything’ mob.
    Understood, I’ve met hundreds of ‘em.
    BTW, I don’t excuse Trump and his acolytes ( or other ill-prepared leaders) , and simply blame China. The culpability is shared…and innocent people pay the price, in respect of health and economic devastation. Now the loon is announcing Chloroquine as a cure. Either he doesn’t get that he’s now President rather than on a reality show OR he’s insane. I favour the latter.

  44. @ Renaldo Pinto @ Texas MD — Much of the world has been traveling over the past seven weeks, and leaving Beijing for planned travel elsewhere during the first signs of an outbreak in another province would hardly have been considered irresponsible at the time, nor would staying out of China in the time since. Americans were being told by their President that this was a hoax until recently, and the majority of people have been at an information deficit here.

    But now that we know more — folks should stay home (or in-place), and governments need to ramp up testing and isolation protocols.

  45. My “Danse Macabre” with the killer virus during my 2019 Year-end Asian Escapade(TM).

    I was just a step ahead of it. Here’s the timeline:

    — December 13, 2019, Singapore
    — December 17, 2019, Taipei
    — December 21, 2019, Tokyo
    — December 24, 2019, Seoul
    — December 28, 2019, Colombo
    — December 29, 2019, Maldives
    ———————- December 31, 2019, China alters WHO to ‘several pneumonia’ cases
    ———————- January 1, 2020, seafood Wuhan wholesale market is shut down
    — January 4, 2020, Siem Reap
    — January 7, Bangkok
    ———————- January 7, 2020, Virus is identified as 2019-nCOV
    — January 8, 2020, Shanghai
    ———————-January 11, 2020, China announces first death from COVID-19
    — January 12, 2020, Back in the US
    ———————- January 13, 2020, WHO announces case in Thailand, first outside of China
    ———————- January 23, 2020, Wuhan quarantined
    ———————- January 29, 2020, cases soar to 6,000; 121 deaths.

  46. @ Tiffany
    It is very sad that you quote Trump to validate your point. Please fact check:
    When did China post a travel ban?
    When did the infection rate grow exponentially?
    How many viral infections started from these animal markets in the last 10 years?
    What is the primary cause of the Global pandemic?
    I would love to know these facts, do post them here.
    And give that OMAAT is not suffering financially like some businesses please be more sensitive. Travel at this time is irresponsible in my opinion. I have to look after 18 people and their families because the pandemic was allowed to happen by China. And my office is shut down because of preventative measures.

  47. We are fighting this at ground level and suffering. It’s real. I choose to accept OMAAT has taken a stand for the author. It’s sad that after all the arguments about equality on your blog your team doesn’t see the problem here. But it’s your blog and I submit to your opinion.

  48. @ Renaldo Pinto — These are challenging times, and I know it’s particularly distressing to the people and businesses who are most immediately impacted. We will be hurt in the long-term as well, but understand the short-term shock is especially difficult, and understand you’re upset.

    The fact of the matter is, however, that none of your “fact check” questions change the outcomes any of us can currently influence. This is where we are now, and the best we can do as a society is fight from this point. No one here is advocating travel at this time, even for repatriation, but I do think it’s helpful to see the extremely aggressive measures other countries are taking to test and monitor against additional infections.

  49. I, for one, fail to see what @Renaldo Pinto is griping about. I’ve read @Tiffany’s post that supposedly shows OMAAT’s culpability (of something that is in fact unclear), and all she did was to tell it like it it.

    — Was “Much of the world traveling over the past seven weeks…”? Sure! CHECK
    — Would “leaving Beijing for planned travel elsewhere during the first signs of an outbreak in another province have been considered irresponsible at the time”? Hardly! CHECK.
    — Did Trump tell Americans that “this was a hoax until recently..” Absolutely! CHECK.
    — Have “the majority of people been at an information deficit here.” Definitely! CHECK.

    So, what exactly is your beef, @Renaldo Pinto?

  50. @Renaldo Pinto

    I hear Walmart is hiring 150,000 people to help make sure everyone can get groceries for the next month. Perhaps this would be a good fit for you while your office is closed

  51. @brian fascinating article. The sky looks so much clearer in Beijing than I have ever encountered. Are you noticing a difference?

  52. @ CAROLLYNE

    Just in case you have missed it, US has more than twice the # of active corona cases as China….
    With the numbers in China going down, and in US (and Europe) going up.

  53. @Tiffany thank you to your friend for working a very informative and independent post. @Eskimo I quite agree with you in what you said. Also, the U.S. CDC has even that if this is not under control soon, this epidemic can last until December in a worse case scenario.

  54. @Renaldo Pinto

    “My business is closed and 18 people have to be supported for 3-6 weeks.”

    You are not the only one affected by this. I don’t know with your way of thinking how can you even support 18 peoples. You can’t go around and blame everyone else for problems surrounding you. You can blame your government or China all day long. Nothing will change. But if it makes you happy, you can always send an invoice to the Chinese Consulate.

    My recommendation, if you can’t handle situations like this, you shouldn’t support 18 peoples. You are doing them no good.
    If it is your own business with 18 employees, I feel bad for them for having a weird boss.
    If you business is working at Walmart to support 4 wives and 14 kids, that explains a lot about you.

    And one more fact check you need to do yourself.
    Don’t be naive and think all this will be back to normal in 3-6 weeks. You need to support those 18 people way longer than that.

  55. This is a fantastic post. It was especially interesting to hear what happened once deplaned, and how ground transport and entry into your community were interested. Thank you for this great first-hand account.

  56. @ron, @ Carollyne – I assume that she meant Chinese would use the new China Southern flights to repatriate from LA to Beijing. Certainly that’s the only sensible direction to take if you are afraid of getting Covid19!

    But don’t worry- no matter how rich, they’ll still have to go through a 14 day quarantine when they get back to China!

  57. @ everyone complaining about communist dictatorships and celebrating your American freedoms: you do realize that the DOJ is trying to use this pandemic to claim emergency powers, while Congress took advantage of everyone’s distraction by the pandemic to reauthorize part of the Patriot act, right? (you know, the one that allows massive government surveillance?) America isn’t the land of the free you think it is, and maybe, just maybe, if we all recognized that we could prevent all the bodies piling up in the name of “freedom.”

  58. @David

    That’s a debate between a big government and a small government and I’m not gonna go down this path. The point I want to make is no matter what kind of government it is, the top priority now is to get this deadly virus under control or we will see more lives lost, and taking every single possible way to save lives should be the top priority now instead of ones civil liberty. Lives are more important than anything else. Period.

    When you are talking about censorship, it is true that China did have those doctor censored. However, still, if it is the US or any other western country who happens to deal with this virus first, I don’t think they can take better control on the situation after learning their mistake. Just take US as an example, the US had more than enough time to prepare itself for the virus outbreak but what Trump has been saying is like “its nothing different than a flu” and the CDC isn’t doing their job well to prevent this outbreak from happening or to get this under control.

    While you may be talking about a big government may be better at certain things, this is the time that they did well for this and I’m giving the Chinese measure a 9.5/10, for keeping the situation under control in two months.

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