Are rickshaws an easy to find, recommended (safe or not?), efficient and economical method of transportation around Beijing?
We are Canadian family of 4 with 2 kids (English speaking) staying in vicinity of Forbidden city and planning to explore the city self guided. If we wanted to avoid a subway or taxi or a long walk to a destination a few miles away, for example Temple of Heaven or Chaoyang Theatre, is it easy to do and safe to ask a couple of rickshaw drivers to drop us off at one of these location a few miles away?
Is that doable by using maps to point if we only speak English? Is it safe to hire these drivers and land on an agreed price ahead of time with no issues at end of transfer?
We think it would be fun to have at least a short ride in a rickshaw but don't really want a full half day guided tour in one. And feel like it could be a fun and efficient way to get around to some of the closer locations while being much faster than walking everywhere.
Any local insight on this idea is appreciated, including any knowledge on what we should expect for pricing?