Arriving in Hong Kong - What You Need to Know



Hong Kong’s airport is vast and busy, but is actually very well organized. It may take you awhile to get to the passport control area, but once you do you’ll move through immigration and customs fairly quickly. As an American, I didn’t need a visa for a short-term stay (the bonus of one country, two systems in Hong Kong vs mainland China). If you have time, it’s worth picking up an Octopus card (The MTR pass that I talk about in the Overview) at one of these vendors so you have money pre-loaded for transit.


There is an express train that travels between the airport and four different stations around the city - Hong Kong, Kowloon, Tsing Yi, and AsiaWorld. The time is about 24 minutes . The fares range up to 115 HKD for furthest-away Hong Kong station - please note that you can get a discount with your Octopus card! This is generally much faster (and cheaper!) than taking a taxi. From the stations within Hong Kong, they offer free shuttle buses to some of the hotels in the area. Coming from the airport you’ll need to hold onto your luggage. However, when you’re heading back to the airport from the city, you can check in, and check your bags, at the station before you board the train!


Taxis are plentiful outside the airport. A cab to Central Hong Kong Island is about 400 HKD (including surcharges). You’ll need to have cash available, as they do not take credit cards. Make sure to either have an address written down, or have it available to show on your phone, as taxi drivers may or may not speak any more than basic English.