Adventures in China: Strange Expat Jobs

Ahh, the fun of being a foreign Jack of All Trades! This is where some of the adventure of living in a foreign country comes from!

This is the job I’d want! (“Sorry honey! It’s my job!”)

If you can pass off that you are from an English speaking country, a whole slew of interesting jobs open themselves up to you. Some of my favorites are dressing up like Santa Claus (yes the real Santa speaks English), high school dropouts teaching Chinese professors how to teach English and doing voice acting for Chinese commercials. But one of the strangest English related jobs in China is interviewing airline attendant candidates.

A guy I know does this almost every weekend. Group after group of young, attractive and slim Chinese girls pour into the room. He, along with the other judges, check them for scars and height, while judging them on their beauty, composure, English level and fluency of their Mandarin (in China there are many dialects and many of the candidates are from far flung provinces). If they pass they get to study to become flight attendants. Not a bad job for 200 RMB an hour.


My favorite from the comments section:

3) Good Friend of a Dead Guy : I was hired to attend the funeral of a dead VIP/CEO so that other funeral patrons would see me and think “oh wow! This guy was sooooo VIP he even had foreign friends!”. I know its ‘low’, but hey the salary was unbeatable! The rouse was even more complete in that I even had to go up to his shrine and bow/kneel while offering up the 3 sticks of incense and doing the motion 3 times. Naturally we arrived by limousine and enjoyed free lunch and dinner that consisted of amazingly exquisite delicacies. Some people did attempt to come up and make small-talk or inquire about exactly how it is I *knew* this dead guy, but I was under strict orders to dodge any such questions.

Read the whole article (and comments) here. If you’ve been a “foreigner” in Asia, it will make you smile. If you haven’t you’ll be shocked at what goes on!

Adventures in China: Strange Expat Jobs– Expat Corner |

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