The main port of entry for international visitors is Hong Kong International Airport. This facility is on Chek Lap Kok and adjacent to Lantau Island. The airport is one of the planet’s busiest and handles around 70 million passengers annually. It serves 100 airlines with flights originating in cities like Sydney, Los Angeles, London and Vladivostok.
Hong Kong International opened for business in 1998 and was built with contemporary terminals and amenities. Excellent ground transport infrastructure was incorporated, which provides arriving passengers with choice when it comes to getting to their final destinations in Hong Kong.
The optimum option is the Airport Express. Airport Express trains transport arriving passengers to Hong Kong Central in less than 30 minutes. These services also stop at the AsiaWorld-Expo Centre, Tsing Yi and Kowloon. They run about every 10 minutes from 06:00 to 00:45.
The International Airport is on numerous bus routes and passengers can get to more or less any part of Hong Kong at any time of the day or night. Although not as fast as Airport Express trains, buses cover far more locations and drop passengers off at places including the Tsim Sha Tsui Star Ferry Terminal and the Macao Ferry Terminal in Central.
NA express and standard N class buses operate at night with less frequent departures when compared to daytime services. It is worth remembering that bus fares have to be paid with exact change. Visitors also have the option of getting an Octopus Card and pre-loading it with enough money for the trip.
The Taxi Station at the airport is signposted from the Arrivals hall. There are three different taxi services and these are coded according to which part of Hong Kong they are allowed to serve. Red taxis are the only ones licensed for all destinations apart from Lantau. Blue taxis serve Lantau and green ones the New Territories.
The other principal means of getting to Hong Kong are by rail from mainland China or by ferries from Pearl River Delta cities. Intercity trains from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou arrive at the MTR Kowloon station of Hung Hom where there are official immigration checkpoints. Travellers coming from Shenzhen and entering Hong Kong at Lok Ma Chau or Lo Wu can board local MTR trains.
Several different ferry operators ply routes from Pearl River Delta locations. These are Macau, Zhuhai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhongshan and Dongguan. The two main ferry arrival and departure points are the Macau Ferry Terminal in Central and the China Ferry Terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui. SkyPier ferries from Hong Kong Airport serve the same destinations.
Once on the ground in Hong Kong, public transport infrastructure is comprehensive and all-encompassing. There are very few locations in Hong Kong which can’t be reached via a combination of MTR train, bus, minibus and ferry. Taxis are readily available but drivers are sometimes averse to taking passengers to destinations that do not match their own personal itineraries.