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How to make the move to Hong Kong as stress-free as possible

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 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.


7 Responses to How to make the move to Hong Kong as stress-free as possible

  1. Robert Hall March 3, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

    Thanks so much for the checlist. I’m moving to Hong Kong in a week and trying to organise myself. Any other suggestions for preparing for life in Hong Kong??

  2. Manjunath April 7, 2013 at 5:17 pm #

    Hi.. Thanks for the information. I’m also moving to HK in two months.

  3. Ex New Yorker April 16, 2013 at 8:35 am #

    Before moving make sure you tell your Banks and Credit cards you are staying in HK for at least 3 months. You’ll be able to get cash at most ATM’s for a charge. If you have Capital One credit cards, you won’t get charged a 3% foreign fee. Movers: Make sure you use a reliable service. I think I chose Aliied Movers. They are international. They have an office in HK. They’ll contact you once your items arrive in Port.
    When you land, Get a Sim Card for your GSM phone from any 7-11 Store. make sure your Phone is UNLOCKED! If you have Sprint or Verizon have it UNLOCKED. Most of the cell phone service here is 3G or LTE 4G. Many of the SIM cards include data. Most reliable service is usually CSL, or Smart Tone or PCCW. This will give you a local number here. You can get a phone contract later which requires a 2 year signing. Meals are cheap here if you eat locally. No tipping is required. Only if you leave 2-3 HKD they’ll be happy. Make sure you have access to Wifi and a laptop. Make sure you can access your banking online. Remember emergency number is not 911 in Hong Kong it’s 999. Also buy yourself an Octpus Card for MTR (subway) and other stores. It’s like a debit card but can be used anywhere in HK to purchase small items in 7-11 and stores like this. Card cost 50HKD. Add 100 HKD is normal. Copy your passport and scan it. Upload it to a web based email such as Gmail or Hotmail. KEEP IT THERE! Also find the Embassy of your country. The American Embassy is located in HK island. Also before you leave, bring all your medication with you on board the plane. You will not be able to ship or send any medicine through the mail from the US. Alot of the over counter medicines are in Chinese and you will need someone to tell you what you are buying. Bring plenty of deodorant, HK is brutally hot in the summer time. You will need it. When you arrive here, get Power plug converters! all your power plugs are useless here! You can buy them for few HKD. What I did was bring a US power strip and then buy one HK power plug converter and plugged my strip into it, thus allowing me to plug all my US plugs. Remember HK is 240 VOLTS, NOT 120! make sure your electronics can support 240 volts. Remember to print Name cards with your name, local phone and information on it. Name cards are important here. Always hand it over with BOTH hands. If you’re at a party or get together, you’ll need it to find a job. Also locate any local hospitals in your area. Some or Public, and others are private. The public ones are very very Slow. The private ones are excellent but expensive. your welcome

    • Criosdean May 18, 2013 at 9:26 pm #

      Great advice. Thanks for sharing :)

  4. John T May 7, 2013 at 3:16 am #

    Very important to get these thing sorted when moving to hk… i forgot to tell my bank i was moving to hong kong… locked out of my account for three days!!

  5. bill August 19, 2013 at 5:16 pm #

    I have lived in HK for the past 6 months. Do add more than HK$100 in your Octopus card. You will end up using it for just about every purchase. No need to bring your Amex card. Outside of the hotel, I only found 1 restaurant that accept it.

    If you plan to stay for a while, open a local bank account but don’t get local credit card. Credit cards from US offer more protection. Use a Skype phone when you are making calls to your bank in US. Skype is free when you call 1-800 number in US. I always maintain $10 balance in my Skype account.

  6. Jeff August 20, 2013 at 12:58 am #

    Don’t come unless your making six figures US$. Not for kids.

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