Gateway Hongkong http://www.gatewayhongkong.com Gateway Hongkong Mon, 16 Jun 2014 18:38:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Exploring Life in Hong Kong – Rachel’s Blog http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/blog-living-in-hong-kong/wandering-begins/ http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/blog-living-in-hong-kong/wandering-begins/#comments Sun, 08 Dec 2013 23:36:11 +0000 http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/?p=3883 Rachel shares her first experiences of living in Hong Kong, as she begins to discover more and more of the city-state.

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8 December, 2013

It was really nice to have the weekend free before I started my work in Hong Kong. The first couple of days I spent my time moseying around Hong Kong Island, gawking at the surreal skyline and the super-futuristic elevated walkways that criss-cross above Hong Kong’s busy streets. Is is amazing how much life is crammed into this small island!

On Friday I made my way up to the Peak using the tram… that was hair-raising! The tram is effectively pulled up a extraordinarily steep angle, giving you amazing views of the city and outlying islands even on the way up. But don’t look back… all I kept thinking was ‘what if a wire broke?’. The views from the top have to be one of the most amazing of anywhere in the world… you can see for miles up here. Also, Victoria Park is an extremely pleasant and peaceful place to go for a walk. It really is striking that such a dense, frenetic city can have such a large area of greenery and peace.

The great thing about HK is that on one corner you might have a Michelin-star restaurant, but only a stone’s throw away you’ll find a tiny local eatery where you can pick up some Dim Sum for HKD20 (about 2 euros). I have always been a big fan of Cantonese food, even back home – and now it is twice as good and a fifth of the price!!

Christmas decorations are up everywhere, reminding me that I’d better start sending some gifts from Hong Kong soon!

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Touched down in Hong Kong – What a view! http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/blog-living-in-hong-kong/touched-hong-kong-view/ http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/blog-living-in-hong-kong/touched-hong-kong-view/#comments Sat, 30 Nov 2013 03:51:21 +0000 http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/?p=3819 Rachel touches down in Hong Kong and finds out where she'll be living for the next month.

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November 30, 2013

Wow this is a change from Chicago! Just sitting in the apartment that I’l be living in for the next month until I find my own place. The view is incredible. I’m up on mid-levels. Mid-levels is an upmarket area in Hong Kong Island, halfway up the slope that eventually is the Peak. From here I can see a slither of the busy Victoria Harbour though much of that view is obstructed by dozens of enormous skyscrapers. It’s night and everything is lit up, which makes it all very pretty.

The flight over to Hong Kong was fine, with an uneventful stop in LAX which lasted a modest five hours. When I arrived, everything was very straightforward and I queued for a short while to get a taxi. The taxi driver was extremely friendly and was very interested about where I was from and what I was doing in Hong Kong. The ride from the airport to mid-levels was about an hour in total I think and when I arrived at the condo, people were waiting there to take my bags and show me to my room – it was like a hotel!

Guessing that the jet lag is going to hit me pretty hard tomorrow so glad that I don’t start working until Monday – nine days from now.


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Moving to Hong Kong: An Important Relocation Checklist http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/moving-to-hong-kong/moving-to-hong-kong/ http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/moving-to-hong-kong/moving-to-hong-kong/#comments Thu, 21 Nov 2013 09:32:44 +0000 http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/?p=2435 Moving to Hong Kong is becoming increasingly popular. Learn about living in Hong Kong including culture shock issues, finding work, and comparing it to your home.

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The expat community thrives here in Hong Kong, with a vibrant social scene that rivals heavyweights like New York and London. Moving to Hong Kong is growing in popularity. We have come up with some key questions asked before you make the move, around working and living in Hong Kong.

“Is it easy to get settled in in Hong Kong?”

Finding the home that suits you is relatively straight-forward, if you know where to look. There are plenty of options around to suit expat needs. Hong Kong Island provides a central location but can be astronomically expensive. Trying further away from Central on HK Island or Kowloon will give you better prices, and more space.

Using a flatshare site like EasyRoomMate can save you significant amount time and money when looking for your first home in Hong Kong. This is also a great way to make new friends when relocating.

Many expatriates begin their move to Hong Kong living in short term accommodation. The cost of this is significantly higher – expect to pay $10,000 to $20,000 for a small apartment.  Some providers, such as comparison site Move and Stay, offer more affordable short term accommodation options.

IKEA and plenty of other furniture options are at your disposal, for those that want to get decorate their new home.

Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time to look around. Read our where to live guide for more.

“Does Hong Kong induce culture shock?”

Because of Hong Kong’s mixed East/West history and present, culture shock is not as present an issue as many places in the East. Those who live in Hong Kong have the unique option to embrace as opulent a Western lifestyle as they like, or on the other hand adopt as much of the rich local culture on offer. You just need to know where to go.

“What is the primary culture difference when doing business in Hong Kong?”

Guanxi, or the development of interpersonal relationships is still very important in Hong Kong- even today. The exchange of business cards is an integral part of the business process and is seen as an exchange of gifts- especially amongst the Chinese. It may be taken as an offence if you do not provide a business card in exchange for your acquaintance’s card.

In general, as long as one holds an acceptable level of respect then there is little to be concerned about on a business level.

“How do I find a Job in HK?”

Hong Kong is a great place to move to.

The Hong Kong Government is looking at ways to get foreign talent to live and work in Hong Kong

There are many routes to finding work here. Consult are working guide to discover more on finding a job in Hong Kong.

The Hong Kong Government has outlined a shortfall in skilled employment, predicted to be 14,000 by 2018. With this on the horizon, attracting foreign talent has become a priority for Hong Kong, especially with rival Singapore progressing as rapidly as it is.

“How simple is the visa process?”

The visa application process is generally quite straightforward and your employer will normally take care of most of the heavy lifting. Find out more about visas and immigration in Hong Kong.

“Is there anything I should bring that Hong Kong doesn’t have?”

Hong Kong is likely to have just about everything that your home country has. The shopping opportunities are endless here. All of the high street favourites are here including H&M, IKEA, Zara – and about every designer imaginable!

“Will I make a good living here?”

The standard of living in Hong Kong is generally pretty high for most. Salaries will tend to be a little lower in most cases than salaries in European or American hubs, but you will pay significantly less tax in Hong Kong. This means that although your salary offer is lower, you may end up having substantially higher disposable income than elsewhere. Read our income tax guide for more.


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How to make the move to Hong Kong as stress-free as possible http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/moving-to-hong-kong/moving-to-hong-kong-how-to-prepare/ http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/moving-to-hong-kong/moving-to-hong-kong-how-to-prepare/#comments Wed, 20 Nov 2013 12:47:46 +0000 http://www.gatewayhongkong.com/?p=3036 Here are some things not to forget when moving to Hong Kong to live as an expat. This will make the move a far more pleasant experience. Reducing the easily-sorted errors will help tremendously in making your new life in Hong Kong as expat as simple as possible.

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Book accommodation prior to moving

Make sure that you arrange some form of accommodation in Hong Kong, especially for the first couple of weeks. This is the last thing you want to be doing when you’ve just arrived in Hong Kong. Leave plenty of time to make sure you get a decent-value hotel or apartment. Sites like Booking.com let you choose from a range of serviced apartments and hotels in convenient locations in Hong Kong and are often heavily reduced in price. Learn more about getting short term accommodation in Hong Kong.

Inform the bank at home that you’re moving

This is one of those things that’ll be the last on your mind, but can be one of those things that can make your move to Hong Kong very difficult. Normally you’ll have to update your status once every six months to make sure the bank doesn’t freeze your account. Learn how to open a bank account in Hong Kong.

moving to hong kong as an expat

Researching movers thoroughly can help save trouble when moving to Hong Kong.

Moving your belongings

It’s important to make a number of key considerations when choosing how to move your belongings to Hong Kong. If you’ve got to use an international mover make sure you are careful, and take a number considerations before picking a mover.

Make sure to do plenty of research when choosing a mover, and don’t just go for the best price – this can lead to disaster.

Have a doctor check-up

Finding the right doctor can take a while so doing any routine check-ups or treatments should be done prior to leaving for Hong Kong. Though, the healthcare in Hong Kong is world-class.

Getting covered

Getting the necessary insurance before moving to Hong Kong is crucial. The beginning of your trip is when you’ll appreciate the insurance, especially global health insurance. It’s important to make sure that you and your family are covered for any sicknesses or injuries. Getting emergency treatment in Hong Kong as an expat is very expensive. Find out more about getting covered for Hong Kong.

Have important mail forwarded

Having a bill unpaid while on the other side of the world can be a stressful situation, so make sure that all important mail is forwarded to you or someone you trust, before you move.

 


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