Film & Equipment
Processing standards have increasingly
improved as Kodak has opened a nationwide chain
of film developing outlets. Color print film can
be found everywhere, but it's almost always 100
ASA (21 DIN). Slide film can be found in camera
shops in big cities only. B&W film is harder
to find, but speciality camera shops sometimes
Finding the special lithium batteries
used by many cameras is generally not a problem.
You're allowed to bring in 8mm movie cameras;
16mm or professional equipment may cause concern
with customs. Motion picture film is next to impossible
to find in China.
Photography from planes and photographs
of airports, military installations, harbor facilities
and railroad terminals are prohibited; bridges
may also be a touchy subject. With the possible
exception of military installations, these rules
are rarely enforced.
Photography is prohibited in many
museums and at certain archaeological sites and
temples. There should be a sign in English advising
of such restrictions, but ask if you're not sure.
Most X-ray machines in China's airports
are marked 'film safe', and this seems to be the
case. However, films with a very high ASA rating
could be fogged by repeated exposures to X-rays
- you may wish to carry such film by hand rather
than have it zapped. A number of train stations
also pass your bags through an X-ray scan before
you are allowed to board your train.