Security in China

Before you board any long-haul bus, train, or plane in China, you have to submit your bags to X-ray, and pass through a metal detector. The system is especially effective because the X-ray operators will almost certainly not be paying attention. They’ll be playing with their phone, or chatting with a colleague, or staring at the bottom of their food bowl wondering where it all went. As for the metal detector, don’t bother emptying your pockets, because when you set off the metal detector, you will just be ignored; at least, that has been my experience as a foreigner.

Last year, while traveling into mainland China, from Hong Kong via Shenzhen, I was traveling with photographic film, and to protect the film I simply bypassed the X-ray entirely. I just walked past, and nobody said anything. Nobody seemed to notice, or care.