Friday, December 9, 2011

Hong Kong for Cheap!- A guide

Hong Kong, Asia's world city. How am I possibly going to get by on this city on a dollar and a dream? Don't worry friends it can be done! Compared to other Asian countries, Hong Kong is expensive but no where near Japan expensive. Expect to pay more for accommodation as the hostels here are pretty infamous for being atrocious. HK likes to lean toward the high roller but that doesn't mean you can't find options. I recommend renting an apt for a week as this often cheaper than a hotel or couch surfing in HK, as it has a pretty large community and they aren't pervs or serial killers. Most of the couch surfing homes in HK, including yours truly are traveler who rent their couch out to a stranger just for the sake of getting to know a new friend. (And possibly crash with them later when they travel to their side of the world.)
It may look expensive, but you can do it for cheap!

There are plenty things to do in Hong Kong for free or cheap. You can do SOOOO much more than shopping! (Although, the shopping is pretty damn good.)

Free things to do in Hong Kong include but are not limited to:

The laser show in TST, The HK Botanical Gardens, Most of the temples including the super famous Wong Tai Sin and Chi Lin Nunnery in Kowloon. (You just have to pay for the travel to get there!), The Walk of Stars (cheesy but free), The Kowloon Park and Aviary, ALL museums on Wednesday (seriously, take advantage of this one...),  Sunday cultural demonstrations at the Cultural Centre in TST on Sunday afternoons and many free classes through the Kaleidescope program. (Check this program out online as you can benefit from free tea ceremonies, cooking classes and tai chi classes, ALL FREE, but you need to make a reservation ahead of time.)
The skyline is free for all! And has a nightly laser show!

Hong Kong has a lot of fun that is expensive but it is possible to save money by getting to these expensive places by taking alternative modes of transport. You don't need to the take the Peak Tram to get to the Peak. Take the Bus at Star Ferry Pier for 5 dollars or if you have several people in your party a cab is just 30 dollars or so. You can save 40-60 dollars by taking the bus into the city from the airport rather the Airport Express. You can save 10 dollars by taking the bus to Disneyland instead of the MTR. You can even take a bus up the Buddha, although I think the money spent on the cable car is totally worth it.

Check out the city bus website:

Cheap transport options include: Star Ferry to cross the harbor (2.5!) and The ding ding tram (2.5!)
You can save up to 3 dollars each time you travel by doing this and you get a nice viewing experience. Although warning, it will take you a bit longer to get places. Work this into your schedule!
Of course, another free AWESOME thing is walking around and seeing things that you can only find in HK!

I don't think all parts of a vacation should be about pinching pennies. You should do one really nice thing for yourself with all the money you saved up! Go to a Jumbo boat for the all you can eat Super Brunch, Buy yourself something pretty at the market (and haggle it down!) or  Go to Disney or Ocean Park. Vacations are about FUN!

And we do have groupon in HK, you can eat at nice restaurants and sometimes get into tourist things like Disney or Ocean Park when they run groupon specials! If you know you are coming keep a look out on the site for some good deals on manicures, 7 course wine tastings or whatever frivolous treat you desire!


  1. Wow this was nice to know. I will be visiting Japan this summer and was thinking about Hong Kong as another destination afterwards. Nice to know there's free stuff to do!


  2. There is a lot of free things to do! Definately consider HK on a Japan trip, but warning Japan is expensive! Even, I had some trouble staying in budget on that holiday!!!