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Hong Kong Transportation

Hong Kong transportation is fast and efficient, be it by air, sea, or land. Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) has excellent service internationally, the subway system is one of the best in the world, and ferries combine sightseeing with transport.

By Air — Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA)

Hong Kong International AirportHong Kong International Airport

Hong Kong is a main gateway to China and much of East Asia. Therefore the international air service is excellent and competition keeps the fares relatively low compared to neighboring countries.

Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) is a great asset to Hong Kong as one of the most important hubs for international passenger and cargo traffic in the region. It has won many prestigious awards due to excellent service. Learn more information about HKIA.

Regular flights to about 40 destinations in mainland China mean HKIA is the airport of choice for many international travelers as a transfer hub. Examples of major companies based at the airport include the two Hong Kong carriers Cathay Pacific Airways and Dragonair (Hong Kong Dragon Airlines Limited).

To Number of Direct Flights Per Day (Approx.) Journey Time (Approx.)
Hong Kong–Beijing 20 3 hours 25 minutes
Hong Kong–Shanghai >34 2 hours 30 minutes
Hong Kong–Xi’an 2 2 hours 35 minutes
Hong Kong–Chengdu >5 2 hours 40 minutes
Hong Kong–Chongqing 4 2 hours 20 minutes
Hong Kong–Guilin 1 1 hour 25 minutes
Hong Kong–Guangzhou 2 1 hour

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Transport between the Airport and Central Hong Kong

A shuttle busSome big hotels offer shuttle service  to and from the airport.
  • Airport Express: It takes only 24 minutes from the airport to Central District by the Airport Express.
  • Public Buses: Hong Kong International Airport is well served by public bus routes. You can take them to and from most parts of Hong Kong.
  • Hotel Shuttle Buses: Some big hotels offer shuttle service to and from the airport.

Learn more information about how to get to Hong Kong airport.

Transport Connection with Mainland China

Ferry Transfer

SkyPier at Hong Kong International Airport enables passengers to and from the Pearl River Delta (PRD) to journey to HKIA by high-speed cross-boundary ferries.

Travelers arriving to SkyPier then proceed to the passenger terminal by special buses directly for their flights without having to go through immigration and customs formalities. This has cut travel times from some PRD ports by half.

SkyPier serves the following routes to the Pearl River Delta (PRD) and Macao:

Routes Journey Time (Approx.)
HKIA To Shenzhen Shekou 30 minutes
HKIA To Shenzhen Airport 45 minutes
HKIA To Dongguan Humen 70 minutes
HKIA To Zhong Shan 70 minutes
HKIA To Zhu Hai 70 minutes
HKIA To Guangzhou 100 minutes
HKIA To Macau Taipa 65 minutes
HKIA To Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal 65 minutes

Note: SkyPier ferry service is for transfer passengers only. It is not applicable to passengers originating in Hong Kong.

Mainland Coaches

In addition to cross-boundary ferry service, some 200 coach trips are made every day by five bus companies linking HKIA with 40 towns and cities in the PRD. Calling at smaller towns to optimize each route, the coaches pass through border immigration and customs checks.

By Sea

Ferries

Star FerryStar Ferry

Hong Kong's ferries are almost always faster and cheaper than the buses, and also provide fantastic photo opportunities. The Star Ferry crosses the harbor between Central and Kowloon, taking just 7 minutes.

The HKF Company operates a number of ferries and hovercrafts between Hong Kong, Kowloon, and the New Territories.

Ferries to the Outlying Islands of Lantau, Lamma, Cheung Chau, and Peng Chau islands depart from the front of Exchange Square in Central.

Daily frequent and fast ferries operate between Hong Kong and Zhuhai (Mainland China). Learn more about ferries between Hong Kong and nearby Cities.

Jetfoil

Passenger can also take a jetfoil, a five-star Premier Jetfoil between Macau, Hong Kong, Hong Kong International Airport, Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport, Shenzhen Shekou Port, and Guangzhou Nansha Port.

Check out more information about jetfoil transport between Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Macau, and Guangzhou.

Hong Kong Kung Hom Railway StationHong Kong Kung Hom Railway Station

By Train

The through trains from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong Province to Hong Kong are available.

The trains from Beijing and Shanghai get to Guangzhou East Station daily, but extend to every other day. There are 12 pairs of trains running daily between Guangzhou East Railway Station and Hong Kong Hung Hom Railway Station.

Beijing – Hong Kong Train

From To Train No. Departure Arrival Travel Time
Hung Hom Beijing West Z98 15:15 15:30 24h15m
Beijing West Hung Hom Z97 12:40 13:01 24h21m

Shanghai – Hong Kong Train

From To Train No. Departure Arrival Travel Time
Hung Hom Shanghai Z100 15:15 10:37 19h22m
Shanghai Hung Hom Z99 17:45 13:01 19h16m

Transportation within the City

Tsim Sha Tsui MTR stationTsim Sha Tsui MTR station

Hong Kong is small and crowded, therefore public transport is the only practical way to get around. Consequently, public transport is cheap, fast, and generally efficient.

Buses

The extensive bus system offers a bewildering number of routes that take you just about anywhere in Hong Kong. Most visitors use the buses to explore the south side of Hong Kong Island and the New Territories. Northern Hong Kong and Kowloon are best explored by the MTR.

In Central, the most important bus station is on the ground floor under the Exchange Square. From here, you can catch buses to Aberdeen, Repulse Bay, Stanley and other southern destinations.

In Kowloon, the Star Ferry Bus Station is the most useful, with buses to the MTR stations and eastern and western Kowloon.

Subway

The Hong Kong subway (MTR) is clean, fast, safe and easy. It is one of the world's most modern subway systems. Though it costs a bit more than other forms of public transport, it is the quickest way to get to most destinations.

Trains run every 2-4 minutes from 6am to 1am daily on nine lines and the Airport Express. Fares range from HK$5 to HK$15. If you plan on doing a lot of traveling, the Octopus Card offers excellent value on MTR, LRT, KMB, City bus and HKF ferries. Octopus Cards can be purchased from ticket offices or customer service centers in MRT and LRT stations, and certain ferry piers of the HKF.

For short trips, the MTR is not the best value. For example, if you want to cross the harbor from Tsim Sha Tsui to Central, the MTR is about five times the price of the Star Ferry without the views and is only slightly faster. However, if your destination is further away, the MTR is considerably faster than a ferry or a bus and about the same price.

Check out more information about Hong Kong Subway.

Trams

TramsTrams

Hong Kong Island Trams are an integral part of the transport network and charm of Hong Kong Island.

Taxis

Hong Kong taxis are not too expensive compared to other major modern cities. Taxis are usually easy to flag down, except at bus stops and restricted areas where the curb is painted yellow, and during rush hours.

Taxi fares start at around HK$15. If you go through any harbor tunnels, you must pay the toll twice as the driver's return toll has to be paid as well.

Many taxis have a card that lists the top 50 destinations in English, Cantonese and Japanese. This is useful as most drivers don't speak English. It's a good idea to have your destination written down in Chinese. If you leave something behind in the taxi or feel a taxi driver has ripped you off, get the taxi number and call the police hotline on 2527-7177.

Lear more information about Hong Kong taxis.

Vehicle Hiring

There is no need to drive yourself around Hong Kong, unless you are planning an excursion to the New Territories. Even then, you may do better with public transport unless you are going to a very remote location.

Car rental companies require either an International Driver's Permit or one from your home country and a credit card deposit of HK$5,000. Drivers must be at least 25 years of age. Daily rates range from HK$700 for a small car to HK$3,000 for an up-market vehicle.

Reputable car rental companies are: Ace in Happy Valley (Tel: 2560-8689) and Avis in Causeway Bay (Tel: 2890-6988).

Our Most Popular Hong Kong Tours

Hong Kong TourTouring Hong Kong with Chinahighlights

It is not easy for a foreigner to figure out the complex transport network in Hong Kong. We are here to help. Contact our travel advisors for help with arranging a tour in a time-saving and comfortable way. Our customized service will take the hassle out of your stay in China.

Here are our most popular Hong Kong tours, for your reference: