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Hong Kong - Streetsmart : Shopping Tips, Tours

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Shopping Tips

Directory

Mandarin Oriental

  • 5 Connaught Rd, Central, Hong Kong Island

  • 2522 3336

  • 94 Nathan Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui

  • 2367 9423

  • 12 Pedder St, Central, Hong Kong Island

  • 2525 7333


  1. Opening Hours

    Most shops open daily but not usually before about 10:30am and will not generally close before 6:30pm. Many, especially in the busy shopping districts, close later at 9pm or beyond.

  2. Sales Tax

    The government is considering a 3 per cent sales tax, but at present there is no sales tax apart from on cars, cosmetics, alcohol and tobacco.

  3. When to Haggle

    Small businesses, such as the many independent computer and electrical goods stores, are often worth trying to bargain with. Consider asking for a cash discount for items such as computers or antiques. Haggling is almost obligatory in the markets, particularly for gifts, antiques and souvenirs.

    Souvenir opera mask
  4. QTS Symbol

    Where you see the QTS symbol (a large gold Q with black brushstroke), it indicates the shop has passed a Hong Kong Productivity Council Audit for fair trading, service levels, store environment and product knowledge.

  5. Finding Larger Sizes

    Some Westerners, women in particular, find shoes designed for the slighter Asian foot a tight fit. It’s worth asking boutiques and shops if they have your size in their warehouse. Clothes are usually less of a problem. Hong Kong’s Marks & Spencer outlets provide a wide range of clothing sizes.

  6. Finding a Tailor

    Dozens of tailors can hand-make suits in as little as 48 hours. The prices can be good, although a cheap deal sometimes means cheap cloth or corners cut. If in doubt use a better-known tailor. For men’s suits try the famous Sam’s Tailor or the Mandarin Hotel’s bespoke A-Man Hing Cheong. For tailor-made cheong sams, try funky Shanghai Tang.

  7. Shopping on a Budget

    For dirt-cheap clothes, head to the markets at Lai Chi Kok and Sham Shui Po. The ubiquitous Giordano and Bossini chains offer decent, good value Gap-style wear. For deeply discounted clearance designer wear head to the shops on the 4th, 5th and 6th floors of the Pedder Building in Central or Joyce’s warehouse outlet on Ap Lei Chau .

    Landmark Centre
  8. Break for the Border

    Consider getting a visa for China and cross over to the border town of Shenzhen for cheap clothes and designer fakes. If you’re prepared to haggle for each and every purchase and do a lot of shopping, the trip will pay for itself.

  9. Fakes

    Fake designer clothes and watches are cheap, common and easy to find in any of Hong Kong’s markets and especially in Shenzhen. Quality can range from the good to the dreadful, so buyer beware.

  10. Avoiding Rip-Offs

    Take great care when buying complicated items such as cameras, computers and other electronics, particularly from the independent shops in Tsim Sha Tsui. Is there a warranty? If yes, can the item be serviced or repaired under it once you are back home? Are essential accessories included?


Tours

Directory

  • Visitor hotline 7am–9pm daily

  • 2508 1234

  • 2984 1414

  • 2368 7111

  • 2802 0200


  1. Bus-Based Tours

    If time is short or legs tire, the five-hour Heritage Tour offers a whistlestop glimpse of ancient temples, ancestral clan halls and walled villages. The daily Land Between Tour takes in Hong Kong’s highest mountain, and various rural markets and fishing villages. HKTB can provide booking numbers.

  2. Cultural Kaleidoscope

    This innovative and free series of walks and lectures by a group of experts on local culture, traditional Chinese medicine and feng shui, offers some excellent insights into traditional Hong Kong and Chinese culture. A daily talk is held at a set location covering a different topic each day. Get details from the HKTB.

  3. DIY Walking Tours

    It may be a stone’s throw from Central’s skyscrapers, but the self-guided Western Walking Tour takes you into a different world past dried seafood shops, herbalists and temples. Pick up a brochure from HKTB offices. A more remote alternative is the Lung Yuek Tau Heritage Trail, a short but fascinating walk starting at Fung Ying Sin Koon Temple, which passes elegant ancestral halls, and tiny, still-inhabited walled villages.

  4. Hong Kong Dolphinwatch

    You’re almost guaranteed to see Hong Kong’s endangered pink dolphins off Lantau Island on this four-hour tour, and if you don’t you can go again free. Learn from the knowledgeable guides about the lives of these creatures and the threats they face.

  5. Museums and Galleries

    See all of Hong Kong’s museums and galleries the easy way via the bus that shuttles between the art, science, space and history museums in Tsim Sha Tsui and the smart, impressive new Heritage Museum at Sha Tin. A one-week bus pass with unlimited entry ticket to all museums is available from HKTB offices. The special bus runs on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm.

  6. Harbour Tours

    Take in the skyline of Central from the harbour by day or night, or sail beneath the Tsing Ma suspension bridge. A range of harbour cruises is on offer. Visit HKTB offices for details.

    Tsing Ma suspension bridge
  7. Horseracing Tour

    Feel the earth move and the hooves thunder as you cheer the finishers home in the ultimate Hong Kong night out. Splendid Tours runs the Come Horseracing Tour during race meetings.

    Happy Valley
  8. Local Rambles

    Details of local walks can be found on HKTB’s website: www.hktb.com, and in a brochure published twice a year and available for free from HKTB offices in Hong Kong and overseas.

  9. Junk Hire

    If money is no object, hire a junk for the day and explore Hong Kong’s secluded beaches and craggy islands. See the Yellow Pages for listings.

  10. Helicopter Rides

    For the most dramatic perspectives of Hong Kong, HKTB recommend Grayline Tours’ 15-minute helicopter ride, followed by lunch, a sampan ride and a tram ride to the Peak. Heliservices AirTours also offer 30-minute and one-hour rides over the harbour, Kowloon and Lantau.

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