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TRAVEL GUIDE TO HONG KONG

 

We’ve gathered the following information for  you in preparation for your trips which we thought were appropriate.  If you need further assistance, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-785-1233.

 

Airport Taxes

Airport departure taxes for international passengers are included in the price of air tickets.

Baggage

Passengers are allowed 44 pounds and two pieces of luggage per person. Excess luggage fees will be charged if you check more than the stated allowances, and these charges are your responsibility.  Baggage carts at the airport are available free of charge.

Baggage carried on board is restricted to exceed 56cmx36cmx26cm.

Climate and Clothing

Hong Kong’s climate is subtropical, with hot, humid summers that can reach temperatures of 95 F/35 C and humidity close to 100%. From May – October, typhoons with strong winds may occasionally occur. From October, temperatures drop to the cool 60s F/20s C. The coldest time of year is December-February. Clear, sunny days make October-November the best time to visit.

Hong Kong’s subtropical climate means you won’t be needing the winter woollies for most of the year. Loose-fitting cotton clothing generally fits the bill. The exception is from mid-December to February, when the mercury might fall to a mild 10oC (50oF). But even in the summer, it pays to bring along a light sweater – air-conditioning in most restaurants and cinemas is often turned up high. Rain showers are often during the rainy season (around May to September), so also be sure to pack a light waterproof jacket.

Communications

Hong Kong thrives on efficient telecommunications. Mobile phone is widely used. Local calls from public coin phones cost HK$1 for five minutes. International Direct Dialing is available in all hotels. Prepaid telephone cards are available in post offices, hotels and supermarkets for public phones. The country code for Hong Kong is (852).

Wifi internet is available in most of the restaurants, shops and hotels.

Postage is inexpensive and the service is reliable. The main post offices are on Hong Kong Island, next to the “Star” Ferry in Central, and at 10 Middle Road, Tsim Sha Tsui in Kowloon. Enquiries: +852 2921 2222.

Currency

Legal tender is the Hong Kong dollar (HK$). There are 100 cents in a dollar. Coins, issued by the government, are bronze-colored for 10 cents, 20 cents and 50 cents; silver-colored for HK$1, HK$2, and HK$5; nickel and bronze for HK$10. Notes issued by HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank have denominations of HK$10, HK$20, HK$50, HK$100, HK$500, and HK$1,000. The Bank of China issues all of the denominations except HK$10. The exchange rate is approximately HK$7.8 to the US dollar.

Major banks are open from 9am to 4:30pm Monday to Friday, and 9am to 12:30pm on Saturday. They close on Sundays and public holidays. Automated teller machines (ATMs) can be found almost everywhere and some HSBC “Electronic Money” machines provide 24-hour cash withdrawal (HK$) facilities for Visa and MasterCard holders. American Express cardholders have access to Jetco ATMs and can withdraw local currency and travelers’ checks at the Express Cash ATMs in town.

Customs Regulations

According to related laws and regulations, the luggage of inbound and outbound passengers must come under customs supervision and control.

 Electricity

Voltage in Hong Kong is 220 volts, so a transformer will be needed to operate 100-volt appliances. Electrical appliances will require an adapter that can change the shape of the plug prongs, as well as an electrical voltage converter that will allow a normal 110-volt American appliance to take 220 Volt current.  Most major hotels provide hair dryers and other amenities.

Food and Water

Hong Kong is known as one of the great culinary capitals of the world. There is plenty of local and international cuisines to sample during your stay. Not all the tap water in Hong Kong is potable, but bottled mineral water is on sale everywhere.

Health Matters

No special vaccinations are required. Upon arrival and departure in Hong Kong, passengers are required to complete a health declaration form provided to (including transit passengers) at the airport, ports and border points.You will also have your temperature taken when you pass through immigration. These measures enable visitors to have an enjoyable and healthy stay in Hong Kong. You can also contact the Center for Disease Control (C.D.C.) 404-639-3534 for updated information.

Holidays

New Year – Jan 1st Chinese New Year – January/ February (3 days) Easter (holidays on Good Friday, Easter Saturday and Easter Monday) – March/ April Ching Ming Festival – April Labour Day, Buddha’s Birthday – May Tuen Ng (Dragon Boat) Festival – June HKSAR Establishment Day – Jul 1st Mid-Autumn Festival – mid September Chinese National Day, Chung Yeung Festival – Oct 1st Christmas – Dec 25th and 26th

Passports and Visas

Visitors to Hong Kong must hold a valid passport. Passports should be valid for at least one month after your planned departure date from Hong Kong. For some nationalities, this condition extends to six months. Nationals of most countries, including US, are not required to obtain visas for periods varying from seven days to 180 days, depending on nationality. Check with any Chinese embassy or consulate for the latest status.

Visas for mainland China can be obtained in Hong Kong. They require one photo and take five working days to process. Visas can be obtained through the Visa Office of People’s Republic of China, Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in Hong Kong, China Travel Service (HK) Ltd, or China International Travel Service HK Ltd.

Time Difference

Standard Time in Hong Kong is 8 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time and 13 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time, USA.

Tipping

On tour with seat in coach of $3-$5 tipping is customary, and $15-$20 tipping per person per day for all private tour.

Most restaurants will levy a 10 per cent service charge but waiters will expect to be given some loose change. Restaurants that don’t add a service charge will expect a 10 per cent tip. However, tipping is left to your discretion. Bellboys, porters, restroom attendants and taxi drivers will happily accept loose change.

Transportation

Hong Kong is geographically compact and boasts one of the world’s most efficient, safe, affordable and frequent public transport systems. Whether by taxi, ferry, rail, bus or tram, you can get around easily and catch wonderful glimpses of the city along the way. The system covers extension areas of Hong Kong with signs in English and Chinese. Airport and sightseeing transfers are included in our tours. Unless specifically arranged, all sightseeing are provided via air-conditioned motor-coach.

Well transportation network between Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China.

 What to Pack?

You can buy virtually anything in Hong Kong. Essential items to bring include: Valid Passport. Travelers Checks. Copy of Your Airline Ticket. Your Medicines. Departure documents. Voltage converter. Travel alarm clock. Camera(s), batteries & films. Sunscreen/Tan lotion.  Pocket size Kleenex. Extra luggage locks/keys. First Aid kit. Soft, foldable slippers. Extra set of eyeglasses. Folding Umbrella.  Comfortable walking shoes.