The Hong Kong transport system is efficient and convenient. Ferries, hovercraft, junks, trains, trams, subway (MTR) buses, double-decker buses, minibuses, apartment shuttle buses, taxis, limos, private cars, an outdoor hillside escalator and helicopters. It is fast, frequent, economical, clean, often air-conditioned and above all safe.

Octopus Card

The Octopus card is a multiple use, electronic ticketing system. Purchased at most MTR stations or a ‘7-Eleven’ convenience store. The cards can be topped up with credit and provide easy swipe payment for multiple modes of transport; MTR, Airport Express, buses and ferries. An increasing number of organizations are accepting Octopus Card for payment.

Tel: 2266 2266


Double-decker buses and new single-decker buses stop at designated bus stops on major thoroughfares throughout Hong Kong. A red background to the number on the front means the bus is a Cross- harbour Tunnel bus. The procedure is to use your Octopus card or pay the fare in correct change into a collection box when boarding.

New World First Bus
Tel: 2136 8888 (HK Island routes)

Kowloon Motor Bus
Tel: 2745 4466 (Kowloon and New Territories routes)

Tel: 2873 0818 (Hong Kong, Kowloon, New Territories routes)


Ferry Services

Star Ferry

The Star Ferry is a well-known symbol of Hong Kong. These venerable green and white workhorses have been ferrying passengers across the harbor for decades. It is a 10-minute ride from Central to Tsim Sha Tsui at the tip of the Kowloon peninsula, remains one of the best transportation bargains in the world, not to mention the most spectacular way to view the Hong Kong skyline.

Although the best-known route for the Star Ferry is Central to Tsim Sha Tsui, there is also a Star Ferry service from Wan Chai to Tsim Sha Tsui, plus ferries from Central and Wan Chai to Hung Hom.

Star Ferry
Tel: 2367 7065

First Ferry
Tel: 2131 8181



Helicopters can be privately chartered for aerial tours and travel to Shenzhen and Macau.

Heliservices (Hong Kong) Limited The Peninsula Hotel


Tel: 2802 0200
Tours and chartered flights.

Sky Shuttle Helicopters Limited
Tel: 2108 9898
Frequent service-connecting Hong Kong to Macau and Shenzhen.


Discovery Bay Ferry

The Discovery Bay Ferry leaves every 20-30 minutes (more frequently during peak hours), 24 hours a day, and takes passengers to and from Discovery Bay on Lantau Island.

Discovery Bay Transportation Services
Tel: 2987 7351

Park Island Ferry

The Park Island Ferry leaves every 20-30 minutes (more frequently during peak hours), 24 hours a day, and takes passengers to and from Park Island on Lantau Island.
Tel: 2946 8888

Outlying Islands Ferries

Ferries travel to the outlying islands of Lamma Island, Mui Wo, Peng Chau and Cheung Chau.

Hong Kong and Kowloon Ferry
Tel: 2815 6063

First Ferry
Tel: 2131 8181


Mid-levels Escalator

This free escalator transports commuters between the Hang Seng Bank Building, Des Voeux Road, Central and Conduit Road with access points en route. It operates running downwards from Conduit Road from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and upward from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

For further information call 2523 7488.


Light Transit Railway (LRT)

The Light Transit Railway (LRT) connects the New Territories towns of Tuen Mun and Yuen Long. It is an inexpensive, efficient, modern air- conditioned train that operates from 5:40am-12:30am daily.

LRT Enquiries Tel: 2929 3399

Mass Transit Railway MTR

The MTR (Mass Transit Railway) is Hong Kongs fully air-conditioned, modern, safe and inexpensive underground. Used by three million passengers a day, it is one of the busiest subway systems in the world. With trains running every few minutes, it is the fastest way to travel along the waterfront on Hong Kong Island, to the Disneyland Resort Lines, the Airport Express service and to the New Territories. Covering areas such as Tuen Mun, Yuen Long and as far as Shenzhen passing through immigration you will need to have a passport and China visa handy, for travel to Shenzhen.

The Airport Express service runs every 12 minutes from Hong Kong and enables passengers to alight from one of eight stops or continue to the airport within 26 minutes.

Mass Transit Railway
24-Hour Enquiry Tel: 2881 8888



Minibuses can carry up to 16 people. There are two types of minibuses available:

Red-topped minibus routes are not always fixed, but passengers can get on and off anywhere they like. To do so passengers need to call out to the driver, when they approach the area they wish to alight. Generally speaking the red-topped minibuses are faster and more convenient.

Green-topped minibuses have a set route and specific fares. Again passengers need to call out to the driver when they approach the stop they wish to alight. Octopus cards and cash, is accepted as payment.


Peak Tram

The Peak tram is a particularly steep funicular railway providing a spectacular birds-eye view of the harbour. For Peak residents or regular users you can obtain a monthly commuter pass or Octopus card. For the pass you will need to provide 2 passport photos and your HKID or passport.

The Peak Tram runs every day, including Sundays and public holidays, between 7:00 am and 12:00 pm. The tram departs every ten to fifteen minutes.

Peak Tram
Tel: 2522 0922


Private Cars

Public transportation in Hong Kong is extensive and efficient; a car is not really necessary. Nonetheless, many expatriates like the convenience that a car gives them. For those living in Kowloon and the New Territories a car will provide greater flexibility and freedom to access nearby shopping malls and schools for example.

Car Insurance

Third-party insurance is compulsory by law.

Car Rental

Automobiles are available for rental either for self-drive, or you can rent a car and driver by the hour or by the day.

Avis Rent-A-Car
Tel: 2890 6988

Farrington Travel Ltd.
Tel: 2808 2828
This travel agency will arrange a car service to the airport.

Fast Track Limousine Services Co
Tel: 9046 4682

Kong Kow Hire Car & Travel Co.
Tel: 2770 8322
This is a car-and-driver hire service. They have both old and new Mercedes sedans.


Driving License

Expatriates, who intend to reside in Hong Kong longer than 12 months, must apply for a Hong Kong drivers license if they want to drive a car. This is easily obtained from the Transport Department. Bring your drivers license from your country of origin and your passport.

Relevant documents provided by the Transport Department (Licensing office), Post Offices and Home Affairs department Public Enquiry Service Centre.

HK Licensing Office Transport Department
3/F, United Centre, 95 Queensway Admiralty
Tel: 2804 2600

Contact Electronic Service Delivery (ESD). An online service, enabling you to renew your driving license, vehicle license, to apply for a certificate of particulars of vehicle and to notify your change of address.

Electronic Service Delivery (ESD)

Driving Lesson

HK School of Motoring
Tel: 2529 9670


New Cars

There is usually only one dealer for each car make in Hong Kong, so if you have a particular type car in mind, the dealership will be easy to locate. Call the Consumer Council Tel: 2929 2222 with the brand name of the vehicle you wish to purchase and they will tell you the name of the dealer and the pertinent details.


Not all properties will include parking and there can be a limited number of spaces available in your place of residence. Check with your management office if there are any car parking spaces for rent.

For a list of public car parks, consult the Government Transport Department. carparks/index_t.htm



Three harbour tunnels connect Hong Kong Island to Kowloon: the Cross-Harbour, Western, and Eastern Harbour Tunnels. Other tunnels are Aberdeen (linking the north and south sides of the Hong Kong Island), Lion Rock (Kowloon-Shatin), Shing Mun (Shatin-Tsuen Wan), Tates Cairn (Kowloon Expressway-Shatin), and Tseung Kwan O (Kwun Tong-Junk Bay).

Tunnel fees vary and ticket purchases can be made in advance from tunnel administration buildings and designated outlets.

Autotoll lanes are designed to ease congestion at the toll gate. To use the Autotoll lane you must purchase a pre paid electronic card from the Cross-harbour Tunnel office, which will automatically deduct payment when you pass the monitors at the toll gate. The Autotoll is monitored by video cameras, those using the lane without an Autotoll must go to the Tunnel office and pay or send the amount due to the Tunnel administration stating date, time and car registration number. Failure to do so can result in a small fine and administration charge. The card is valid for use at the Cross-Harbour, Eastern Harbour, Western Harbour, Aberdeen and Lion Rock tunnels.

Autotoll Limited
Tel: 2627 8888


Used Cars

Used cars in Hong Kong are generally in excellent condition because they have been parked in garages and typically have low mileage. Here are a couple of sources for used cars:

Car City
G/F, 8 Commercial Tower
8 Sun Yip Street, Chai Wan
Tel: 2893 6126

Open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Monday to Sunday), this car show has more than 300 cars, 30% of which are brand-new Japanese cars imported directly from Japan.


Finding a Car

The Automall
Urban Parking B1
HK Convention and Exhibition Centre 1 Harbour Road, Wan Chai (Next to Grand Hyatt)
Tel: 6821 1614
Hotline: 3113 2111

Open from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday to Sunday. Approximately 30 car agencies, with 400 cars displayed, of which about 80% are European cars.

Your best bet may be to buy a car from an individual leaving Hong Kong. Used cars from a dealer tend to be much higher in price. Read the ads in the South China Morning Post in the; Motors and Boats; section of the classifieds and check and Look at the announcement boards in the supermarkets and around your housing complex. Try to cross- reference prices of the cars you are interested in with ads and, if the car is a fairly recent model, with the price of the new model.

Getting a Professional Opinion

Have a car mechanic take a look at the car you are considering buying. It is well worth the cost to have your prospective purchase checked for serious problems. Also, for older cars, they must pass a rigorous inspection every year before your registration is renewed.

Doing the Paperwork

Both the seller and buyer will need to fill out a change of ownership notification form to be filed at the Transport Department located in Admiralty Center above the MTR station. Make sure you know how to contact the previous owner in case the car has any outstanding parking tickets.

You will also need to arrange for insurance and provide proof thereof, and pay a processing fee to re-register the car. Unless the car is very new, an honest insurance agent will recommend that you get ;third- party ; liability insurance only. This covers your liability if you crash into someone, but does not cover bodywork on your own car. If someone crashes into you, they are theoretically supposed to pay for the damage.

Car Insurance

Third-party insurance is compulsory by law. You must obtain a certificate of insurance before a transfer of ownership and car registration can be completed.

Registration and Transfer of Ownership

You are not allowed to drive a car on the road unless it is registered and licensed. Register your car at the Transportation Department.

You can obtain the necessary forms for auto ownership transfer at the Transportation Licensing Department. You will need the Vehicle Registration, your Hong Kong Identity Card or passport, proof of insurance, and payment of the necessary fees.

HK Licensing Office Transport Department
3/F, United Centre, 95 Queensway
Tel: 2804 2600

Maintenance and Repair Services

Hong Kong Automobile Association (AA)
Membership Tel: 2739 5273
Breakdown Assistance Tel: 2304 4911

British Repair and Driving School
63 Pok Fu Lam Road Pok Fu Lam
Tel: 2540 3306

Elegant Motor Service Co. Ltd
G/F, 5 Mui Hing Street Happy Valley
Tel: 2893 9767

Fookie Motors Company Ltd
8 Ah Kung Ngam Village Road Shau Kei Wan
Tel: 2565 6166



Taxis can be found everywhere, helped by the taxi pick up points located in convenient areas. Taxis are regulated and required to display both their car numbers and names on the dashboard.

Most taxi drivers understand the English names for major streets, hotels, and numbers. Anything more complicated could be a problem. Having your destination written in Chinese characters can help.

At night a lighted roof dome indicates availability; in daytime a red ‘for hire’ flag on the dashboard can be seen at a distance. Off-duty or pre-booked taxis will display an ‘Out of service’ sign.

Taxis in Hong Kong are relatively inexpensive; a trip from Central to Mid-Levels costs approximately $20.00-$35.00. A trip from Mid-Levels to the airport will cost approximately $500. Drivers do not give small change. If the fare is $18.20, the driver will most likely give you $1 or $1.50 change from $20. Tipping in the form of rounding up is common practice; a larger tip is discretionary. You will also incur additional expenses if you use the trunk of the taxi to store your luggage HK$5, as well as extra charges for tunnel tolls.

Taxis come in different colours, indicating the area they are allowed to service.

  • Red
  • Green
  • Blue

Hong Kong Island and Kowloon New Territories

Lantau Island

Booking a Taxi

If you are home and wish to call a taxi, this is easily done; there is a $5 taxi booking surcharge. Please note that taxis are sometimes difficult to get during rush hour and during rainy periods.

24-Hour Reservation Hotline
Hong Kong Tel: 2574 7311
Kowloon Tel: 2760 0411
New Territories Tel: 2383 0899

Radio Taxi (Booking) Services
Fraternity Public Car Radio Centre
Tel: 2527 6324
Areas covered: Hong Kong and Kowloon.

Wi Fat Taxi Owner Association
Hong Kong Island
Tel: 2861 1008
Areas covered: Hong Kong and Kowloon.

Wing Tai Radio Taxi
Tel: 2861 1011
Areas covered: Hong Kong Island.



Old-fashioned double-decker street trams run parallel to the harbour on Hong Kong Island from Kennedy Town (west) to Shau Kei Wan (east), while one spur goes to Happy Valley. These hundred-year-old streetcars are the least expensive way to go short distances in Hong Kong. The tram costs around HKD$2.00 for adults and HKD$1.00 for children, you can pay by Octopus card or cash – pay the correct fare, as no change is given. Trams run from 6 a.m. to midnight.

For further information:

HK Tramways Limited
Tel: 2548 7102

Travel Agents Registry

Hong Kong is the gateway to China and the hub of Asia as well as a route to all major airports around the globe. Hong Kong Government established the Travel Agents Registry and it is responsible for the administration of the Travel Agents Ordinance whose aim is to raise the standard of the trade through regulation of the travel agents operating in Hong Kong. They aim to protect the interest of outbound travellers and the inbound visitors and enhance the reputation of Hong Kong as a tourist-friendly city. Their web site provides a list of all the licensed travel agents in Hong Kong

Tel: 3151 7945