It really does take away all the hassle of getting around Hong Kong by public transport
Buy an Octopus Card. For Londoners, the Octopus Card is basically what the Oyster Card should be, but isn't. They are essential in Hong Kong. You can use them for all major transport options (except taxi’s and yellow / red roof mini buses) and use them to make purchases in all Convenience Stores including 7 - 11's and Circle K, Supermarkets, Starbucks, McDonalds and local franchises such as Watsons and Mannings.
On arrival purchase one at the local MTR (metro) station or at the Airport Express Counter in the arrivals hall at the Airport and make sure your buy the one shown in the picture as these cover all transport options (see below) as opposed to the other cards on offer which only work on the MTR!
have kids under 12 then buy a child card and people over 65 can get the
senior card allowing half price travel, you need to buy one card per
person, you cannot use one card for 2 people!
Just for the record you can use them on the following transport options;
- The MTR, our simply brilliant "underground train system"
- The Buses (Citybus, KMB and NWFB) on Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and the New Territories including the Airport Buses into town
- Green Roof Minibuses
- The Peak Tram
- The Star Ferry
- Outlying Island Ferries
- The Tram system on Hong Kong Island
- at this point in time the Octopus Card is NOT accepted in our Taxi's
can only buy the card in the MTR Stations at the Customer Service
counters and they only accept cash and only HK$, you cannot use your
credit card to buy an Octopus card
It will initially cost you HK$150 of which HK$50 is held as a deposit and is refundable when you return the card, you can add value (in HK$) at convenience stores such as 7 - 11 and Circle K and ALL MTR stations.
- please note for the kids / senior card buy the basic card and add an additional HK$50 in value to the card
For the standard adult octopus card I would have a starting balance of HK$400 this should be sufficient for a 2/3 day stay.
You can add up to around HK$900 onto them, and once you leave you can hand them back in at an MTR Station for a refund but beware: the limit on the card needs to be below HK$500 to get an instant cash refund otherwise you have to wait a week; and they do not have a system to refund you if you live overseas!
Try not to lose them! if you do it is pointless reporting the loss even if you had a large balance as essentially anyone who finds the card can hand them in to get a refund.
...and last but not least, when you are done with them you return them at any MTR Station or the Airport Express Counter at the Airport and get back the HK$50 deposit and any remaining balance left on the card minus a HK$9 admin charge.
The MTR advertises an MTR Tourist pass which is good for one day and offers unlimited travel on the MTR Train system, sounds great.. however you can only use it on the train system so why bother, stick to the normal Octopus card
I do personal walking tours around Hong Kong, I am on the streets every day and I have a somewhat interesting perspective of this wonderful city I have called my home for 37 years. My private walking tours are perfect for visitors who want a detailed overview of Hong Kong prior to exploring on their own and for people who are only here for a day or two who want to make the most of their limited time here.
Many clients book me for their first full day in Hong Kong, they get to see the best that Hong Kong has to offer + a crash course on our wonderful public transport system and then they go exploring for the rest of their stay armed with step by step instructions and recommendations from me....
...oh, and if you book a tour then you are booking a tour with me, I do not employ other guides.