Do you have plans to live in Hong Kong? You are certainly not the only one as this city, in particular, is quite popular among the ex-pats. These ex-pats consist of people from neighboring countries as well as from the far West. If you decide to relocate here, you will be no short of fellow ex-pats. However, before you pack your things and hire an international moving company, you need to think carefully about this decision. For this reason, here are all the questions to ask yourself before moving to Hong Kong. If you are not happy with the following answers, then, you might wish to reconsider your decision.
Questions to ask yourself before moving to Hong Kong about food
Some people enjoy Asian food while others would rather skip it. For this reason, if you are not a fan of this particular cuisine, you might find another country that suits your taste. However, if you are relocating to Hong Kong from US due to some business, then, do not worry. Since there are so many ex-pats in Hong Kong, you can find western options as well. If you enjoy Asian food, then you are in for a treat. Some typical Hong Kong dishes you must not miss would be wonton noodles, sweet and sour pork, egg tarts, and of course, fish balls. In addition to this, you must try dim sum, as it a classic of Cantonese cuisine. As you might know, it is a custom to eat with chopsticks so make sure to practice before coming here.
Should you learn the Chinese language?
This is probably the most common question that people ask when moving to a foreign country. Should you learn a language spoken there? First of all, due to its complicated history, Hong Kong has two official languages, one being English of course, and the other one being Cantonese. You will have no trouble finding your way around the town with only English as all the official signs are also provided in this language. However, if you want to find a good job in Hong Kong, knowing Cantonese would be a huge advantage. Unless you already have a job waiting for you, you can only find English teaching jobs that are not paid that well. For this reason, plan ahead when moving to Hong Kong and take a few language lessons to make your life here much easier. Knowing a couple of phrases will certainly help you.
Questions to ask yourself before moving to Hong Kong about proper etiquette
Another more important part of living in Hong Kong would be knowing and respecting the proper etiquette. First of all, you need to know there is a hierarchy in everything. This is especially prevalent in a business setting. You always need to greet the most senior person at your company and at the same time guests are always the most respected in any business surrounding. Then, if you happen to receive an invitation for dinner or drinks, it is considered very impolite to refuse. Of course, you cannot always accommodate everyone’s invitation. In this situation, you need to apologize and always suggest another date. In addition to this, remember to accept any offer of drinks or snacks, always bring a gift when going to someone’s house, and give the gifts with two hands to your host.
The cost of living is quite high
When you’re considering to move to Hong Kong, you also need to think about your future living accommodations. Unfortunately, Hong Kong is quite infamous for its extremely high cost of living. The main reason behind this would be the rent prices in the city as there are ridiculously high. If you ask any ex-pat, they would complain about the rent they have to pay for even the smallest apartment. For this reason, see if your future employer can help you find accommodations. If not, you can also ask some of your acquaintances in Hong Kong to help you find something affordable and Kwun Tong storage for your other items. However, this is not the only reason why the cost of living is so high. It is quite common to dine out several times a week which can be quite expensive.
Concerns about ex-pats’ life
Most ex-pats are usually interested in life in Hong Kong. Here are a few things you should think about before planning your relocation.
- Applying for a visa – you need to get a visa if you plan to work and live in Hong Kong for a long time. You should need to visit your closest Chinese consulate or embassy to apply for your visa.
- Meeting your fellow ex-pats – another important aspect of living in Hong Kong would be meeting other people. Since Hong Kong has a large population of ex-pats, you will never be alone. You can find your fellow ex-pats and locals, of course, in restaurants, language exchange clubs, etc.
- Transportation – well, Hong Kong has one of the best transportations in the entire world. You can own a car but it would be expensive. Therefore, you can rely on taxis, buses, minibuses, and other forms of transportation.
Things to see and do in your free time
Questions to ask yourself before moving to Hong Kong should also be about your free time. However, the working culture in Hong Kong can be quite intense. You might not have that much free time as you used to in your home country. Still, with good time managing skills, nothing is impossible. You should definitely visit Lan Kwai Fong as it is the most popular area for ex-pats. If you want some British-style restaurants and places, then, go to Wan Chai. Lastly, some tourist spots might include Victoria Peak, Trick Eye Museum, Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware, etc. See if you can live in Hong Kong based on the things mentioned here. If you can, then, start packing your items.