Hong Kong Quick Guide

If you are considering visiting Hong Kong, then you may be tempted to try the dim sum culture that is popular in the area. Unfortunately, while the dishes may be delicious, they are also very expensive. As a result, many visitors find themselves in Hong Kong with no where to go for lunch or dinner but dim sum. This article is meant to help guide you on your way to making a memorable experience in Hong Kong.

In spite of being one of the most expensive cities in the world, Hong Kong is filled with exciting sights and great shopping experiences. While Hong Kong may be expensive, you can certainly find good value for money by shopping around. Try to visit at least three of the major districts in the city before spending money. You should definitely take a look at the "Sheng Wu Bang" or "Zhou Yin Hong Kong" areas. The storefronts in the "Wong Kung Shei Bang" are a great place to get good bargains on name brand products.

If you are looking for an easy way to spend a few bucks, then the best option would be to eat in a fast food restaurant. The majority of fast food restaurants in Hong Kong offer special deals during busy seasons. During these times, you will find bargain prices on hamburgers, pizzas and Chinese food items. The "Ngong Ping" in Central could also be considered a cheap option, while "Tung Tong" in the New Territories is known for its high quality dim sum.

If you are on a budget, then you should consider taking a bus or subway to and from the airport. Hong Kong's public transportation system, the Mass Transit System (MTR), is quite good and the journey is relatively cheap compared to driving yourself or using another mode of transportation. One thing that you need to remember when using public transportation is that you are supposed to pay for every trip you make. Therefore, make sure to plan your trip ahead to avoid paying hefty charges.

Hong Kong now has two international airports that can be accessed by low cost flights. On top of that, there are also many affordable hotels in the city that can provide basic facilities for a bed, toilet and TV. You can easily avail of the discounts offered by the hotels and compare them with other similar hotels. The octopus card which is provided by the hotel company is usually valid for 30 days.

In addition to the local travelers, visitors from other countries can easily reach Hong Kong by using ferries that dock at the harbor. The most convenient ferry to dock is the express ferry service offered by the Kowloon and Lamma stations. You will arrive at Hong Kong Island in less than an hour after you board the ferry. Kowloon and Lamma are located on the northern part of the island and allow quick access to the new territories.

You can also use the new territories' public transportation, which includes the MTR, buses and the subway. The MTR costs less than a single fare of a cab fare. It gives you easy access to different areas of the city and allows you to move around quickly once you arrive at the Island. On the other hand, the subway is another convenient option for reaching the Island since it covers several districts.

For those who have no idea about the modes of transport available in the new territories, you can avail of the Hong Kong Travel Guide which gives an overview of the major public transportation systems. In addition, you can view all the sights of the urban area using the Hong Kong tourist map which comes in a CD or a DVD. If you want a detailed and informative map, you can buy one online. The Hong Kong Travel Guide will not only take you to Hong Kong's urban areas but also to the rural areas.

What vaccinations do I need?

Up to date information for vaccinations before you travel to Hong Kong are available from the NHS Fit for Travel website.

Is it safe to travel?

Best time to visit?

The best time to visit Hong Kong is from October to early December, when the weather is sunny, cool, and pleasant. January/February is the best time to experience Hong Kong festivals, as it is the time when the Spring Festival and the Lantern Festival are celebrated.

Do I need a Visa?

Visas are not available on arrival at the Chinese border for British passport holders. If you're entering Hong Kong via mainland China and leaving again via the mainland, you will need a double or multiple entry visa for mainland China.

See which forms you may need for entry into Hong Kong.

What currency do i need?

The official currency of Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Dollar (HKD). If you're looking to transfer or spend money in Hong Kong you can grab amazing Hong Kong Dollar deals via Wise.com (GBP to HKD).

What about the wildlife?

Barking Deer, squirrels, Chinese Porcupines, and Chinese Pangolins may still be seen in some remote areas. Except human, macaques are the only wild primates found in Hong Kong. Rhesus monkeys, longtailed monkeys and their hybrids can easily be found in the areas adjacent to Kowloon Reservoir

What is the traditional food?

Cantonese food? Roast goose is Hong Kong's national treasure, a dish consisting of plump, succulent, and tender meat with a delicately crispy skin

What Languages are spoken?

Across Hong Kong, Cantonese is the most commonly spoken language, with 96% of the population speaking it. Mandarin comes next at 48% and English at 46%. You can learn some basic Cantonese before you travel to Hong Kong and really impress the locals!

How much do you tip?

The currency in Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Dollar (Most restaurants in Hong Kong will put an extra 10 percent service charge onto your bill, which will usually be mentioned on the menu and will be visible on your final bill.).

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Useful Numbers

  • Police: 999
  • Ambulance: 999
  • Fire: 999
  • UK Embassy: +852 2901 3000

Time Difference

The GMT time difference is 7 hours

Travel Apps

Grab a travel app or two

Learn Cantonese

Learn some Cantonese before your trip to Hong Kong

Hong Kong Guidebook

Stay informed before, during and after your trip to Hong Kong by buying a guidebook.