Moving to Hong Kong
If you thought that Hong Kong was all about towering skyscrapers and gargantuan towers, you’d be right. But, you’d also be right if you guessed that almost half of its territorial land is occupied by parks and nature reserves. That’s right—Hong Kong, or “fragrant harbour” as it means in Chinese offers something for everyone.
Those into architectural marvels can appreciate the world’s longest covered elevator stretching over 800 meters in Hong Kong’s Central-Mid-Level escalator. If you’re into highfalutin lifestyle, you probably already know that Hong Kong boasts of an envious spot on the billionaires list—in 2020, it ranked seventh.
For the locomotive nerds, you have The Peak Tramway, which is the world’s oldest and steepest tramways—396 metres above sea level. The Hong Kong-Zuhai-Macau bridge, which opened in 2018, spans 55 kilometres across the Pearl River Delta, making it the world’s longest sea crossing.
And if you’re superstitious, you’d be relieved to know that it’s common for apartment buildings to not have a fourth floor as the number four sounds like the word “death” in Chinese, so it’s considered unlucky.
And we know what you’re wondering—and the answer is no, Hong Kong doesn’t offer digital nomad visas yet. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t for remote workers and nomads. In fact, and unsurprisingly, it ranks quite high on Nomadlist on account of having a great quality of life, fast and reliable internet, number of good coworking spaces and an active nightlife.
Admittedly, Hong Kong can be expensive for remote workers looking for budget travel (with sophistication comes sticker shock), thanks to the overinflated and unforgiving property market. Estimated costs for a single person can be as high as $6000—making it the most expensive city in Asia and among the top ten in the world.
But Hong Kong is also a major financial hub in Asia that attracts a high number of skilled talent, especially in the financial services and technology sector. The country supports a number of different visa type (other than tourist visas) for relocation. While the General Employment Policy guarantees a work visa against a secured work contract, the Quality Migrant Admission Scheme offers expats of certain professions to relocate to Hong Kong based on their skills. For instance, it offers 1,000 slots to IT, financial, legal, and creative professionals who do not need an existing job offer to be eligible for the visa.
Hong Kong also provides employment-based visa options for seasonal workers, foreign domestic workers and low-skilled labour.
Where to live in Hong Kong
There are many great places to live in Hong Kong, and the best one for you will depend on your budget, lifestyle, and personal preferences. Here are a few suggestions:
If you want to be in the heart of the action, consider living in one of the bustling neighborhoods on Hong Kong Island, such as Causeway Bay, Central, or Wan Chai. These areas are home to a wide range of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options, and are well-served by public transportation.
For a more laid-back atmosphere, consider living on the outlying islands, such as Lamma, Lantau, or Cheung Chau. These areas are popular with expats and offer a more relaxed pace of life, as well as easy access to beautiful beaches and hiking trails.
If you have a family and are looking for a more suburban setting, consider living in the New Territories, such as in Tai Po or Sha Tin. These areas offer a mix of urban and rural living and are home to a number of international schools.
Ultimately, the best place for you to live in Hong Kong will depend on your individual needs and preferences. It might be helpful to spend some time in the city before deciding where to live, so you can get a feel for different neighborhoods and see which one suits you best.
Do I need a Visa for Hong Kong?
It depends on your nationality and the purpose of your visit to Hong Kong. Some nationalities are able to visit Hong Kong visa-free for a certain period of time, while others are required to obtain a visa before traveling. Additionally, the requirements for obtaining a visa may vary depending on the purpose of your visit, such as tourism, business, work, or study. It is important to check the visa requirements for Hong Kong that apply to you before planning your trip. You can find this information on the website of the Immigration Department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government.
Immigration and Visa Options for Hong Kong
There are several types of visas that you can apply for to visit Hong Kong, depending on the purpose of your visit. Some common types of visas include:
Tourist visa: This type of visa is for individuals who want to visit Hong Kong for tourism purposes, such as sightseeing, visiting friends or relatives, or participating in cultural, sports, or other activities.
Business visa: This type of visa is for individuals who want to visit Hong Kong for business purposes, such as attending business meetings, conferences, or trade fairs.
Employment visa: This type of visa is for individuals who have been offered a job in Hong Kong and will be working there for an extended period of time.
Study visa: This type of visa is for individuals who want to study in Hong Kong for a period of time that exceeds six months.
To apply for a visa for Hong Kong, you will need to complete the appropriate application form and submit it, along with any required documents and the applicable fee, to the Chinese embassy or consulate in your country or to the Immigration Department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government. The processing time for visa applications can vary, so it is important to apply well in advance of your intended travel date.
Can I Work Remotely in Hong Kong?
It is possible to work remotely from Hong Kong, but you will need to obtain the appropriate visa if you plan to stay in the city for an extended period of time. The type of visa you will need will depend on the length and nature of your work.
If you will be working remotely for a short period of time, you may be able to do so on a tourist visa. However, tourist visas are generally intended for individuals who are visiting Hong Kong for tourism or other short-term purposes, and you may be required to show evidence of your employment and the purpose of your visit when you apply for a tourist visa. It is generally not advisable to rely on a tourist visa for long-term work in Hong Kong.
If you will be working remotely for an extended period of time, you will need to obtain an employment visa. To apply for an employment visa, you will need to have a job offer from a Hong Kong employer and meet the other requirements for the visa. The employer will generally be responsible for applying for the employment visa on your behalf.
It is important to note that Hong Kong has specific employment laws and regulations that apply to foreign workers, and you will need to comply with these laws while working in the city. You should also be aware that the cost of living in Hong Kong can be high, and you should budget accordingly.
While we’re striving to bring you more content-rich information, take a minute to dig deeper into our FAQs, on-the-pulse information about Hong Kong and connect with our leading immigration Advisors today.