How to Save Money in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a wonderful, vibrant city, but such characteristics come at a price.

Its streets and residential blocks are among the most expensive in the world and it has one of the highest Gini coefficient globally, a scientific measurement on income gap among residents. That is why for us who belong on the lower end of the economic ladder, every little way to save dollars helps. Here are some ways to spend less than what you might be doing now, but note that time is gold and it’s probably more valuable than money.

How to Save Money on Transportation

  1. Take the tram instead of taxi, especially during peak hours when clogged streets defeat the purpose of taking the cab, and trams do have special lanes for (almost) exclusive use so it reaches destination close to estimated time.

  2. Use discount taxis, especially when traveling long distances deep in the night. Better yet, avoid going home in late hours to avail of more frequent (and cheaper) means of transport.
  3. If you qualify based on income, required number of hours per month and use public transport going to work, you can apply for Work Incentive Transport Subsidy Scheme to receive transport subsidy from the government.
  4. When you go to Macau by ferry, shops that peddle tickets adjacent to “official””ticket counters at Shun Tak offer discounted rates.
  5. Use MTR Fare Saver when you happen to pass by at these addresses to get $2 discount on your MTR ride.

How to Spend Less on Your Birthday 

  1. Free entry at Wanchai CEO Neway (just bring five paying guests) within five days of your birthday.
  2. Free entry at Ocean Park. Just present your Hong Kong ID.
  3. Free entry at The Madame Tussauds Hong Kong.

How to Reduce Bills

  1. To avoid going beyond mobile airtime limits, forward mobile number to home or office so you’ll pick land lines which virtually have unlimited airtime minutes.
  2. Skip fitness gym membership and consider signing up at available government-funded fitness rooms at LCSD.
  3. Use energy saving light bulbs and turn off computers when not in use.

Where To Buy and Eat Cheaper

  1. In general, it is cheaper to buy meat, vegetable and fruits at wet market than supermarket chains.
  2. In general, it is cheaper to buy shampoo, detergent, bleach and toothpaste at local dispensaries than supermarket chains.
  3. Eat local treats like char siu bao, har gow or beef with egg noodle at small restaurants at markets or cha chaan teng instead of those in malls that offer the same menu.
  4. It’s usually more expensive to buy products at Great or Citysuper than elsewhere so consider looking elsewhere before buying
  5. Sign up for membership loyalty cards for restaurants or supermarkets if you often visit the shop.
  6. Bring lunch box to work. Not only saves time queuing, but also cheaper and healthier.
  7. Morning movie tickets are cheaper.

Photo credit: Pixabay. License: CC0 Public Domain

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