Being seconded to Netmarks Shanghai under the COVID-19 crisis <Column 1st of 3>

  • Blog-EN


  • China
  • Covid-19

Greetings. This is Hideki Miyazaki of Netmarks Shanghai 新規タブで開く .

Netmarks Shanghai has been providing IT infrastructure services mainly for the Japanese companies in China since 2003. Many of our customers already have business relationships with Uniadex, Ltd. in Japan, so we are working at our best to provide the same level of quality services as in Japan.

Netmarks Shanghai's office is located in the central part of the city and the walk from the West Nanjing Road Station of Metro Line 2 takes about 5 minutes. Please come and visit the office when you are nearby.


As my predecessor, Saito, I would like to provide the latest local topics from the local Netmarks entities throughout in the Asian region. I also recommend you read an article written by Saito on [It takes 150K JPY to register a car in Shanghai!? 新規タブで開く ].

I came to Netmarks Shanghai from Uniadex in middle of August 2021.
I hope reading about my experience may become something beneficial for you.

Preparation for going abroad

My first task was to get ready to go abroad.
As I wanted to use a smart phone the moment I arrived in China, I wanted to procure a SIM card which were useable in China. I highly recommend getting a SIM-free smartphone. Also, WeChat (微信) application is a must as you will be using this applet at many of the places after arriving in China.

Traveling abroad under the Covid-19 situation was quite difficult. I first needed to get a PCR testing and IgM antibody testing at a testing entity registered by the Chinese Embassy within the 2 days of traveling abroad. A certification of the double negative results under the Chinese Embassy's specified format is needed. The certificate must be carried with me during the travel. (Reference: Chinese Embassy registered entity information)

Extra care was needed as the travel registration is time sensitive. In my case, I had to register around noon time a day before my flight. An approval to travel was made by the Chinese government past 8PM that day. If the QR code below turns from yellow to green, that means the request is approved.


For the latest information, please refer to the announcements made by the airline company you are using and/or the Chinese Embassy website.

Flight from Narita Airport to Shanghai Pudong Airport

To check-in at the airport, Chinese immigration health declaration was necessary. This was to be made using a sub-program under WeChat. There was an instruction board next to the check-in counter. This is something that must be declared on the day of the travel, so no prior declaration was possible.

There were more people at the checking in counter at the airport than I expected & the flight was about 70% full even with the social distancing requirement. I was originally told that the in-flight service will be limited to something simple such as crackers. However, I was treated with Japanese Tendon. It will be a while before I got to eat anything Japanese, so I savored it very carefully.


Once I arrived at Shanghai Pudong Airport, Chinese government inspectors wearing protective suit checked the inside of the airplane. The passengers had to remain seated until the CA instruction. Approximately 60 passengers seating in 10 rows were allowed to disembark the plane at a time. As I was seated toward the rear of the plane, it took me more than 30 minutes to disembark.

The person standing in the right-hand side is a passenger, not an inspector.

The flow at Shanghai Pudong Airport

After finally getting off the plane, a PCR testing was needed. I sat down according to the instruction of the inspector, showed the QR code screen for the Chinese Immigration related declaration, and handed over my passport.


Tears naturally came down as they deeply scrabbed my throat and both sides of my nose with a long cotton swab. I was wondering when I would receive the test result, but I never got one.

Next is the immigration. I just proceeded moving forward as there was only one way until I got off the airport. I handed over my passport and the immigration card I filled out in the plane to the immigration officer. I was asked where I stayed in the past 14 days. I was also asked if I planned to travel outside of Shanghai right after my arrival. Many of the officers did not speak any Japanese nor even English, so some of the passengers were taking more than 10 minutes for the immigration. I wrote down my Japanese mobile number which were accessible within China.

Once the immigration is done, next was the customs.
I picked up my luggage at the turntable.


Customs officers seemed they were not bothered about anything. No one said anything to anybody. We all just passed by.

Next was a transfer to the quarantine hotel. First, another registration to the system (旅客信息) was needed. I closed the browser after the first registration, so I had a hard time retrieving it. I should have taken a screenshot.

With my luggage, I moved to a waiting room which was separated according to the quarantine area.
Once at the waiting room, I was asked which of the 2 hotels with 2 different rates I preferred staying. I searched with my smart phone and picked a hotel for the look.
No shopping including the vending machine was allowed at the airport. Free bottled water and sweet bread were available on the table. Smoking was not allowed neither.

Once a certain amount of people (approximately 20) gathers, the transfer to the hotel starts. In my case (Jing'an District), I had to wait about 2 hours as the transfer took place past 5PM. In line, we followed the staff leading us to the bus terminal.

After one hour of a bus drive, the surrounding was completely dark by the time we got to the quarantine hotel. We were first gathered in the lobby and the quarantine rules were explained by the monitoring officer. Smoking and alcohol were prohibited in the rooms & I had to pay for the stay and the food in advance.
I looked around and realized I was the only Japanese in this group and felt little lonely. For the communication with the monitoring officer, we had to join a certain WeChat group. It was mostly in Chinese. But no worries, WeChat has a translation function. It's not all perfect, but I was able to understand the contents to a certain point.

I finally made it to the room! I ate the food box which was left for me in the room & went to bed early.
This is the way I started the 2 weeks quarantine life in China.

(to be continued)

Has an experience of managing an open style call center and the engineers in Japan. The tasks at Netmarks Shanghai are to manage the engineering quality, develop new clients, and to discover new business commodities. Eating and walking are my favorite activities. I stroll around my apartment on the weekends & even travel some distance to discover popular places in Shanghai.