Saturday, May 5, 2012

Hong Kong Prices

People keep asking me about prices in Hong Kong. I’m running into a lot of people online who are going to move to Hong Kong or are thinking about it. I guess it makes sense to ask me because I live here. The thing is, it’s almost impossible to tell people how expensive Hong Kong is. Everyone’s experience will be different.

The single biggest expense will be rent. What you pay in rent will vary greatly depending on location, size and type of apartment. The expat and business areas where all the expats and business people seem to want to live are far more expensive. Prices drop dramatically just a few MTR stops away. They get even lower if you go farther. My apartment in Mong Kok would cost 3 times as much at Mid-Levels and half at Tai Po. My best advice is that you probably don’t need to be so close to your job. The MTR works very well. It’s only a few minutes between each stop and even though it’s always crowded, it all moves quickly.

I’ve heard that the price of apartments changes based on your skin color. When we found our apartment we looked around with and without a Chinese friend to help us. The prices seemed lower with the Chinese friend. I’d say it’s always best to bring along someone Chinese.

There’s a website that tells you the cost of living in whatever city. The one for Hong Kong doesn’t match my experience. Most of the prices seem too high, especially the food. The rent prices seem too low.

Hong Kong is a very large city with a lot of variety. I don’t think there’s any such thing as an average price here. Anyone can eat cheaply in Hong Kong, but if you want to live cheaply you’ll need to live away from everything.

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