We're going to travel around China, visiting mainly major cities.

Map of our intended route in China

We'll be taking a river cruise in the south and probably visit some rice fields, so I expect we do need some protection.

We wondering whether we should bring sufficient anti-mosquito lotion (with DEET) with us or whether its available in China as well.

Or are there any other useful anti-mosquito solutions? Or are we exaggeration how much we will be needing it?

  • All very helpful, but I gather that plug-in electrical mosquito repellents don't work in air conditioned hotel rooms because the air conditioning unit extracts the repellent as well as the hot air!
    – user19753
    Aug 29, 2014 at 18:59
  • Not very helpful, especially on such an old and eminently reasonable question but, by definition, you should always bring sufficient anti-mosquito lotion everywhere. What's available there and whether it's needed at all will simply change the meaning of sufficient…
    – Relaxed
    Aug 29, 2014 at 19:46

4 Answers 4


I have traveled to China about 10 times now as my wife was born there.

If you are not spending your time in air-conditioned hotels and doing some independent travel I seriously suggest you take some repellant.

It really depends in China where you are as to what sort of things you can buy; cities are expanding all the time; if you are in a newer section of city or an area that has a lot of expats then you can easily buy things like repellant, deodorant or shaving cream. However, if you are in an older city trying to hunt these things down is like hens teeth.

What the locals use is a product which is like a floral water. The most popular brand is Liu Shen 六神, which you will find in any convenience / grocery store and is easily recognisable as a bright green liquid in a slender glass bottle. The product in China is referred to as Hua Lu Shui 花露水. You can now also get this in a plastic bottle as a spray on.

enter image description here

This stuff is usually used quite liberally, so don't try and just use a few drops. Chinese medicinal type stuff is usually not as powerful as Western style so you need to use more.

The other thing you need to know, if you are not staying inside a decent quality air-conditioned hotel you should use a mosquito net.

My son and wife are preferred targets for mosquitoes in China so this is always something we always need to worry about.


Malaria is particularly a risk to the south in Yunnan province (basically above south east asia)


I've traveled in China, on several occasions and not really had any problems with mosquito's and I've traveled in Yunnan as well. That being said, the chances are that NO you can't find DEET mosquito repellent in China, most things you'd find easily in countries like Vietnam/Cambodia/Thailand aren't easily available in China, deodorant being another example.

So in your situation I would buy and take a small bottle with me, but I probably wouldn't expect to use it at all.


Bring your own supply of DEET based repellent but don't worry about it too much, especially this late in the season.

I've never seen DEET here - I've been living in China for 6 years - though that doesn't mean it can't be found. It just means that I can't find it. Language problems are a big issue and something that is easy to find at home can take weeks of searching in China simply because of the language. If something is essential, bring your own supply.

Mozzies have never cause me much issue. I do get them in the house and I am occasionally bitten but no too often. Most houses and hotels have mozzie nets on the windows, even in cheaper hotels. If your hotel doesn't, ask the manager or go to another that does. At night, check your room for mozzies. They are often visible sitting on the wall or ceiling. Kill on sight. If you hear them in your room at night, get up and kill them before sleeping again.

A popular choice in Chinese homes is a plug-in repellent for your room. If you ask a hotel for repellent, the plug in is what you are likely to be given. This plugs into an electrical socket in your room and gives out a repellent scent all day long.

When out and about, it is rare to be annoyed by mozzies. They don't come in swarms like I've seen in other countries. Even going to rice fields (which will be dry most of the year except for spring when mosquitoes are less common anyway) you won't have a problem. I assume the southern most spot on your map is Guilin - When I was there in late summer 2007 I never saw a single mozzie.

  • go to watson, OFF is sold there.
    – MaoYiyi
    Sep 14, 2012 at 6:21

I live in a tropical country with a lot of mosquitos in some beachs I usually travel. The best mosquito repellent I know is all natural.

It's vitamin B12. You start 2 weeks before travel to ingest B12 capsules. Your skin will produce a natural protection with a odor mosquitos really dislike. It's better than any spray, chemical or citronella candles... cheap and clean! Oh, sure, you can't feel the smell, only the mosquitos!

But I recomend to bring other solutions too, this solution could work for someone, and maybe not for another one.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .