Hong Kong Transportation and Transfer Guide  
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Hong Kong Transportation and Transfer Guide

Getting Around

Hong Kong's main rail systems include the Mass Transit Railway (MTR), the Kowloon-Canton Railway (KCR) East Rail, and the Light Rail (LR).

The MTR is, by far, the most efficient, fastest, cleanest, and smoothest rail transport. Running along Hong Kong Island's north side, it travels beneath the harbor where branches serve Kowloon and Lantau Island. Trains run from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily, with the maximum fare of up to HK$13 for a single adult journey. For inquiries, call 2881 8888.

KCR is a commuter railway that stretches from Hung Hom in Kowloon to the boundary with mainland China at Lo Wu. All, but the express trains to Guangzhou, end at Lo Wu. A visa and special ticket is required to travel to Lo Wu station and into Shenzhen. The KCR runs every 3 to 10 minutes from 5:30 a.m. to 12:20 a.m., and the maximum fare is HK$33. For KCR inquiries, call 2602 7799.

The LR runs daily from 5:40 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. between the New Territories towns of Tuen Mun and Yuen Long. Fares range from HK$4 to HK$5.80. For inquiries, call 2468 7788.

Buses are ample in Hong Kong. The final destinations of both double-decker and regular buses are marked in English and Chinese on the front top panel. Operation times are from 6 a.m. to midnight, and fares are considerably low from HK$1.20 to HK$45. It is advisable to prepare the exact fare to make it easier for bus attendants, as well as not to hold the queue when boarding the bus. Bus drivers are typically not fluent in English, and it is better to find your routes from hotel staff or someone who speaks your language before attempting to take the bus.

Hong Kong's bus companies are as follows: New World First Bus (2136 8888), and Citybus (2873 0818) on Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and the New Territories, and Kowloon Motor Bus (KMB) in Kowloon (2745 4466). Visitors can get bus route maps from HKTA Information and Gift Centres.

Getting There

Hong Kong's location is geographically strategic to some of the major travel routes in the world, thus opening doors to Asia. The country itself is advanced with its public transportation system thus bearing the reputation as having one of the best transport systems in the world. Traveling to and around Hong Kong is fairly easy and quick. However, like most major cities it is best to avoid rush hours (8 a.m. to10 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.) if possible.

By Air
Hong Kong is the major air-traffic center for the region, so there are sufficient flights in and out of the country. Since the commencement of the new Hong Kong International Airport at Chek Lap Kok on July 6, 1998, visitors luxuriate in one of the world's largest and most futuristic airports. The airport sits on a small island offshore Lantau, about 34km from Central. It is convenient to get to the airport using the Tsing Ma Bridge, the world's longest single-span suspension bridge, or by the Airport Express train, MTR, Airbus, regular city buses, and taxis.

The Airport Express is a 64-seat train, which only takes 23 minutes to reach the airport from Central to Hong Kong Island. It costs HK$50 to take the Airport Express, while the fare to Kowloon and Tsing Yi is HK$40 and HK$20 respectively. The airbus is also a good alternative because it stops at most major hotels. Taxis are easy too as they take you from the airport to almost anywhere in Hong Kong. To know more about fares and routes from the airport, pick up the HKTA's Public Transport From Hong Kong International Airport leaflet.

By Train
Most trains are linked to the major cities in China. Four daily trains link Guangzhou and the Hunghom station on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong, with two extra trains added during special festivals and other peak periods. Traveling time is 2 hours. A 3 hour direct train between Foshan and Hong Kong is also available.

Tickets can be bought from most hotels and the CTS office in Guangzhou. However, if tickets are sold out, there is an alternate route to the border terminus of Lo Wu from Kowloon-Canton Railway (KCR), which would take approximately 40 minutes, with three departures an hour from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. The Shenzhen station is right across the border. There are many trains a day between Shenzhen and Guangzhou. The trains stop at either Guangzhou's central or east railway station.

Trains between Kowloon and Guangzhou are fully air-conditioned, but not all are between Shenzhen and Guangzhou. While purchasing a ticket, ask for the air-con class. Although it is slightly more expensive, it is worth the price, especially during the hotter seasons.

By Boat
Visitors have the choice of various destinations when traveling by boat between China and Hong Kong. Among them include Guangzhou, Xiamen, Shantou, and Shanghai. Also, different types of sea transportation are accessible to visitors. There is an overnight steamer between Hong Kong and Guangzhou that takes eight hours, a daytime catamaran service taking just over three hours, and ferries to Shantou, Xiamen, and Shanghai with varied traveling hours.

A hydrofoil service links Hong Kong to Guangzhou, Huangpu, Guangzhou's commercial port, and the delta cities of Lianhua Shan, Nansha, and Zhuhai. For information on hydrofoil schedules, call 2833 9300 or 2542 3428 in Hong Kong. Visitors may catch the hydrofoil from the Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal at Shun Tak Centre (200 Connaught Road, Hong Kong) and from the China Ferry Terminal (Guangzhou Road, Tsim Tsa Tsui).

The most impressive ride by day is aboard a huge, high-speed catamaran between Kowloon and the Bogue port of Nansha, located at the entrance of Zhu Jiang (Pearl River). From the Nansha terminal, a free bus shuttle takes travelers to the White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou. There are three catamarans operating daily between Nansha and Hong Kong (8:30 a.m., 9:15 a.m., 2 p.m. from Hong Kong, and 11:20 a.m., 4 p.m., 5 p.m. from Nansha). Tickets can be bought at the China Ferry Terminal (Tel: 2375 0537) in Hong Kong, the Nansha Terminal (Tel: 498 8312), and the basement floor of the White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou.

Boats are available at night from either Hong Kong or Macau to Guangzhou. These boats run daily, except on the last day of each month, leaving either way at dinnertime and arriving by sunrise. Visitors will be able to enjoy a view of the harbor as the boat sails from Hong Kong. The 'Xinghu' is the most comfortable boat. Departures are from the China Ferry Terminal in Hong Kong and from the Porto Interior in Macau.

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