Accommodations & Getting Settled

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The transition into Hong Kong’s fast-paced lifestyle can be eased with the help of social networks and staying in the right accommodation. This chapter will outline ways for newcomers to meet others as well as provide tips on choosing a suitable place to stay.

Flat Sharing

Looking for a flatmate or simply want to rent a room? There are a number of online groups and community resources that can help you find one quickly and safely. Take a look at the following websites and Facebook groups.


Map of Hong Kong

There are three main geographical sections of the city of Hong Kong: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon peninsula across the harbor and New Territories to the north of Kowloon.


Residential Areas

Location, location, location. Property- obsessed Hong Kongers understand this universal real estate mantra all too well. Where you choose to reside in the city will be a defining aspect of your time here, influencing everything from your monthly living expenses to how you are perceived by your peers and co-workers.


Utilities

Electricity, Water, Gas and other costs


Newspapers

Aside from the local Chinese papers, there are two major English-language newspapers in Hong Kong.


JOINING A NETWORK

The cosmopolitan characteristics of Hong Kong make it an easy place to meet people if you are relatively sociable.


SMARTPHONE APPS

The following smartphone apps may prove useful for your time in Hong Kong. Simply visit the websites mentioned and follow their instructions to download the apps.


Places of Worship

If you are religious, finding a place to worship will be a top priority. Joining a spiritual community is also a good way to make new friends and meet like-minded people. Religious freedom is guaranteed in Hong Kong’s constitution, so you will find a place for every faith here.


Domestic Help

Many expatriate families hire a live-in or part-time domestic helper. The helper may be a Chinese “amah” or more often a person from the Philippines or Indonesia. Duties of a live-in helper usually include cleaning, laundry, cooking and/or help with the children and pets. A six-day work week is standard, with Sundays off.


Accommodations

If you are an expatriate living in Hong Kong in a company owned/rented property, then you will be provided – in most cases – with spacious accommodation in a relatively convenient location.


Languages

Cantonese, the most widely spoken dialect in Hong Kong, is integral to Hong Kong’s cultural identity. Not to be confused with the four-toned Mandarin language, the heavily slang-based Cantonese with its six tones is notoriously difficult for foreigners to learn – a word pronounced in the incorrect tone takes on an entirely new meaning.


Useful Websites

Education resources, Expat community resources and General living