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About Hong Kong


Hong Kong (香港) is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People’s Republic of China. It is situated on China’s south coast, positioned at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta. Dubbed as a gateway between the East and the West, it is an important global hub and an attractive center for international trade.

Hong Kong Island: Hong Kong Island is the heart of Hong Kong with shopping, entertainment and commercial districts. The Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC), the Wan Chai neighborhood, and many INTA hotels are located here.

Kowloon (九龍): In between Hong Kong Island and New Territories is the densely populated Kowloon Peninsula. Bustling districts attract people to its shopping, dining and cultural charms. Several INTA hotels are located in Kowloon, and the President’s Dessert Reception will take place here.

Lantau Island (大嶼山): Lantau is the largest of the Outlying Islands (離島) forming part of the New Territories (新界). Hong Kong’s International Airport is located here as well as Hong Kong Disneyland, where Annual Meeting attendees will enjoy INTA’s Grand Finale the evening of May 14.

The Hong Kong Tourism Board has a great website and is the best resource to learn more about your trip.

Tours

Pacific World has organized several pre and post meeting tours. Be sure to view all the tour options around Hong Kong and beyond and then sign up for tours after you register for the meeting.


How to Navigate the City

INTA will only be offering shuttle for the two large networking event. Return shuttle will be offered to select hotels from The Welcome Reception on Sunday and round-trip shuttle will be offered for the Grand Finale on Wednesday.

The city claims one of the world's safest, most efficient and frequently used public transportation systems. Below are other options for traveling around the city:

  • Airport Express is highly recommended for your tip to and from the airport. This express train is the fastest and most affordable option from the airport running about $40 US dollars and taking about 30 minutes to Hong Kong Island.
  • MTR Daily Pass which is valid on all Subway lines is $7.10 US Dollars a day. You can purchase your daily passes when you register for the Annual Meeting and then pick the passes up at the HKCEC with your badge.
  • Octopus Card is another option for getting around the city. You can store value on this smart card and then use it for most public transport, as well as purchases in convenience stores, fast food shops, supermarkets, cake shops, vending machines and more. Simply place the Octopus card over a reader and the correct amount will be automatically deducted from the stored value. You can purchase this card at any MTR station.
  • Taxis are another convenient, reasonably priced option and are plentiful. Taxis in Hong Kong are categorized by three colors, each indicating a geographical area. All taxis can travel to and from Hong Kong International Airport, as well as Hong Kong Disneyland. Red taxis operate throughout most of Hong Kong, except for Tung Chung Road on Lantau Island and on the entire south side of Lantau Island. Green taxis only service the New Territories. Blue taxis only operate on Lantau Island.
  • The above ground tunnels system can be an easy way to traverse the city. Note that most buildings are given a name in addition to their street address and it will be helpful to know these names when using the tunnel system as most exits list the building name.
  • Ferries are a fun way to hop between islands. As a coastal city, Hong Kong regularly operates ferry routes that connect Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and the Outlying Islands. Be sure to make room in your schedule for a trip on the Star ferry which has faithfully carried passengers across Victoria Harbour since 1888.

Practicalities

Language

Both Chinese and English are official languages in Hong Kong. You should have no problems taking taxi’s, eating in restaurants and at your hotel if you only speak English.


The City

Hong Kong is a very modern city with world class hotels and restaurants at your disposal. Hong Kong is also one of the safest cities in the world and almost always bustling with people.


Currency

The Hong Kong Dollar is actually set at a fixed rate and is pegged to the U.S. dollar at a rate of about 7.80 HKD to 1 USD, although exchange rates may fluctuate slightly. While coins are issued by the Government, interestingly, the issue of Hong Kong banknotes is shared between three commercial banks: HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank and Bank of China. These notes vary in design and color according to denomination.

You can exchange your currency for Hong Kong Dollars at any authorized money exchanger. For extra peace of mind, look for a money exchanger that is accredited by the Quality Tourism Services (QTS) Scheme. At Hong Kong International Airport, currency exchange counters are open from early morning until late at night and many located within the city stay open into the evening. ATMs are widespread and operate 24 hours.

Electricity and Voltage

The standard electrical voltage in Hong Kong is 220 volts AC, 50Hz. Most hotel bathrooms also have outlets for 100 volts, but if not, you will need a transformer for any appliance or electrical equipment. The majority of electrical outlets in Hong Kong take a three-pronged UK-style plug. You can buy an inexpensive adaptor for your electrical equipment at most convenience stores.

Internet Connection

The HKCEC will have free wifi in most areas and most of the hotels all offer wifi as well.

Useful Phrases in Cantonese

Good morning 早安 (jóusàhn)

Good afternoon 下午好 (ngh on)

Good evening 晚上好 (máahn on) 晚上好 (máahnseuhng hóu)

Thank you  谢谢 (dòjeh) - for a gift, 谢谢 (m`hgòi) - for a service

How much is this? 这个多少钱 (Nigo géido chín a?)

Weather

The weather in May can be quite humid with the average temperatures in the upper 70’s F (25 C). Be sure to pack some layers so that you stay warm in the Convention Center and cool outside. Bring an umbrella with you as well since May can sometimes be a damp month for the city.

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