Places to Go When You Have a 7 Hour Layover Near Pudong Airport

May 25, 2017 -

Get the Best Deals on Flights from California, US to Japan

Rumor is to get the best deal when flying to Asia, you should book your flight 129 days prior to your departure date. That is approximately four and a half months in advance. 

If you are willing to take a 5 to 7 hour layover in Shanghai, you can find a number of flight deals to Japan. The airline I found on my trip to Japan was with China Eastern. 

If you are planning to go to Tokyo then Haneda airport is the one you want fly into since it is about 20-30 minutes away from Tokyo versus Narita airport which is about 2 hours from Tokyo. 

If you are a U.S. citizen and plan to stay in China, they typically will require that you obtain a visa. However you don't need a visa to leave the airport if you have a layover before flying to another country in less than 24 hours. 

Model of Shanghai Maglev

When you arrive at Pudong airport, you'll want to follow the signs that go to the transit visa areas. You don't need to pre-register or anything. You just need to have your passport and flight ticket, tell them you have a layover, and they will stamp your passport for the temporary stay. 

Places to Go on a 7 hour Layover near Pudong Airport 

First and Only Maglev Stop from Airport
You can buy Maglev (magnetic levitation train) round trip tickets at the airport for 80 RMB. There is only one stop and it goes to a subway station. From there you'll have to hop onto the Shanghai Metro where you can then go out to Shanghai Disney (Line 11: Disney Resort Station) or Line 2: Lujiazui Station where all of the iconic parts of Pudong are like the Pearl Tower and lots of malls and restaurants. 

I'd recommend taking a taxi back to the airport to save time or at least to the Maglev station. If you take a taxi back to the station, it is highly recommended that you write it on a piece of paper or have some way of showing the cab driver where you want to go. It is highly likely that the driver won't speak English. 

At the first Maglev stop from the airport, if you are there early enough, you'll see street food. There you'll find a 85 degree bakery, a KFC and MacDonald's. Interesting enough, KFC was one of the first american chains to start up in China in around 1987. Both MacDonald's and KFC have some Chinese dishes that may be worth trying. 

Do rush back to the airport because sometimes there are security lines. They also ask that you take out all iPad like devices, external batteries, and bottles. It can take up to two hours to go through security. 
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