Sunday, November 14, 2010

2007 July: Hong Kong: Almost a Year Plan over my HK Trip

2007 July: Hong Kong: Almost a Year Plan over my HK Trip

This is my first time in Hong Kong (August 27 – September 01 2007); actually it took me almost a year to study this trip. Planning from what airline to choose, to the hotel, whether to join in guided tours and to study their food and their culture. Checking out the official and unofficial sites in HK, reading all the pages in multiple forums, threads and blogs, exchanging emails from various representatives of the airline, hotel and theme parks.

Hope I can share with you some helps and tips on your very own trip in Hong Kong and Macau!


What airline to choose?
We grabbed the Peso Fare Promo of Cebu Pacific (http://www.cebupacificair.com/). The seat sale usually happens during March or April for the travel period from June to December. You must also be aware of the usual delayed flights from this airline, in our case it is around 6 hours, from the original 10pm it was moved to 4.30am schedule due to the technical problems (radio and queue in NAIA) encountered. Thus, if you are not in a tight budget, just take Philippine Airlines or Cathay Pacific.


Where to stay?
There are multiple inexpensive hotels and hostels in Kowloon area. But based on what I read most, it is okay to stay there if you are with some guys. But if you are traveling alone, or you are girls they say it is better to stay in Hong Kong Island, which is a little expensive.

There were two hotels that we study, but we choose South Pacific over Cosmopolitan (
http://www.cosmopolitanhotel.com.hk/) because the latter they say is near the cemetery. Cosmo is a lot cheaper than South Pacific, plus it has also good location. So you can consider it also.

I do recommend the South Pacific Hotel (
http://www.southpacifichotel.com.hk/) where we stayed, it’s address is in Wan Chai but it is really near Causeway Bay area (just 10-15 minutes walk from Times Square and Lane Crawford). Below is the hotel lobby.


The size of the room is just okay, plus it has comforters, coffee/tea making facilities, refrigerator and clean bathroom.





Be sure to book your rooms a month before or so to make the cheaper deal.
We did not book directly to the Hotel’s site, we log the reservation through Asia Travel (
http://www.asiatravel.com/hongkong/southpacific/index.html) because it much cheaper.


What to expect in the HK Airport?

Arrival gate for Cebu Pacific is just too far, thus you need to follow the directions. You need to find first the Airport Train (not the Express Train), the one without the seats inside to reach the Arrival Area section. Just a reminder to always line-up with the Visitor sign in the Immigration (Cameras are not allowed). Check the baggage carousel number and get the baggage on the specific carousel. Pass the Green Lane in the Customs if you have nothing to declare. You will not miss the Money Changers on this area, but sometimes it is better to have few HKD already before going there. (You can exchange your Peso in BDO or in China Town. For BDO transaction, you need to notify them 3 working days before you can pick up the HKD from the branch which you have an existing account.)


Below is the Customer Service at the Arrival Area.


How to reach your Hotel from the Airport?

You can use of the Airport Express Train (http://www.hongkongairport.com/eng/aguide/transport.html), which takes only 25 minutes to reach HK Station (near Central). Or you can take the Hotelink Bus (http://www.trans-island.com.hk/eng/index.html) in A1 or B1 Hotelink Counter to reach your Hotel. Please do not pay to the kiosk counter or the driver. The charge will be included in your room bill. Bus driver will load and unload your luggage.