Favorite thing What's this? It's psychedelic Hong Kong money designed to give counterfeiters colorful hallucinating headaches.
Fondest memory If you wish to change foreign money in Hong Kong, it's always better to do so at one of the big banks (HSBC, Bank of China, Standard Chartered) instead of the little money exchange shops that you'll see in tourist shopping areas.
The only exception is if you are changing Chinese yuan back into Hong Kong dollars. Make sure you check the exchange rate if you do this particular transaction because those shops are competing with each other for this big business. You also need to check and see if there are any commission charges.
Favorite thing Hong Kong's currency is the Hong Kong dollar. As of 1999, the Hong Kong dollar is pegged to the U.S. dollar at HK$7.80 = US$1.00, with the rate being able to fluctuate by only 10 HK cents.
Traveler's checks are a safe way to carry money abroad. Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are widely accepted in Hong Kong. Note that the airport is probably the worst place to exchange currency for Hong Kong dollars. Most banks will do the exchange at a much better rate.
There is no sales tax in Hong Kong.
Favorite thing Electricity: 220 V, 50 Hz, which is compatible to equipment in Great Britain. Most hotels have 110 V outlets for shavers. Hong Kong has a variety of plug outlets, most standardized on Great Britain's three-pin square sockets (13 amps); these differ from the outlets used in the United States and Canada--and even mainland China!
Favorite thing By far the best rate of exchange on my last trips to Hong Kong were to be had at Chungking Mansions. At the entrance in the lobby area there are several exchange booths so the competition is pretty good for the traveller. As always count your cash before you leave the booth counter.
36-44 Nathan Road, walking down towards Salisbury Road about 250 meters on the left hand side before Salisbury.
Favorite thing Okay this tip is not confined to hotels in HK only but to all hotels where an electronic safe is found at your hotel room.
Wipe the touch keys down before operating it with a damp cloth, and then dry it before entering your secret code. Try to do this every time you use the safe.
Also after you have keyed in your code and closed the door firmly locked on the safe. Press all the other keys /numbers that do not make up your code, and press them firmly. Doing this may set off a small alarm from the safe but it stops quickly and no one will pay any attention (!!).
The reason to do this is because certain hotels have caught their own hotel staff placing, a light oil residue or powder on to the touch keys that shows them when using a certain light what numbers were pressed. They were managing to open the safe, and one very clever thief was taking only 1 or 2 US$ from each room. Would you have noticed ? It is not a lot but in a 400 or 500 room hotel the guy was doing quite well for himself.
Favorite thing I stayed in the Causeway Bay area and there are loads of money changers in the area but you have to pick the right one that has the best rate as they vary wildly. Some of the best exchange rates I found are on Yee Wo Street.
Favorite thing Population - 7.6 million
Area - 1 092 sq km
Full name (Mandarin): Xianggang Tebie Xingzhengqu
July 1 (1997) - Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Establishment Day
October 1 (1949) - National Day
GDP: $198.5 billion
Unemployment: 7.5 % (2003)
Internet Users: 4.35 million
Favorite thing the main currency of Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Dollar (HKD) and it is also widely used in the Territory of Macau. The currency is Pegged to the US Dollar at 7.75 HKD to 1 USD and is also pegged to the Macau Pataca (MOP) at 1.03 MOP to 1 HKD. Besides the Hong Kong Central Bank, the 3 Major Hong Kong Banks like the HSBC can also issue HKD Notes.
Fondest memory It is available in 10¢, 20¢, 50¢, $1, $2, $5, $10 coin denominations and $10, $20, $50, $100, $500, $1,000 Bank Notes. You can change your local Currency to Hong Kong Dollars at the various Money exchange shops, Banks, Hotels, Malls and at the Airport in Hong Kong.
Favorite thing for easy cash if you don't have much pocket money of would not want to use your credit card that much.
But a word of caution,
if your are not the type who wants pass on charges on withdrawing money through international Automated Machines and rather use your credit cards to save on withdrawal fees, then just use your credit cards ok. Like in major cities, the ATM's here in Hong Kong are mostly affiliated to international consortiums like Plus or Discover or Cirrus. Again a caveat, when you withdraw money via atms, there are 2 pass on charges (the first is by your local bank in your country and the second is the local bank here in Hong Kong for a flat rate of HKD 35 per withdrawal of whatever amount) so I would recommend you withdraw large sums since the charges are the same whether you withdraw a pitiful amount or a large one.
Fondest memory Automated Teller Machines are numerous here in Hong Kong by the big banks like HSBC, Standard Chartered Bank, Hang Seng Bank, Citibank and a lot more.
Favorite thing lack of Land Space in Hong Kong as the territory is only about 1,108 square kilometers (427 square miles) of Land Space and is one of the congested cities around the world in terms of population density per square kilometer at 17,000 people per square kilometer. Most local people are housed in large and High Rise Public Housing Condominiums and Private Condominiums scattered around Hong Kong and land prices in Hong Kong is the second Highest in the world after London, hence most locals don't own land but live at the private and public condominiums.
Fondest memory there are many high rise condominiums in Hong Kong, Both Publicly and Privately Owned.
Favorite thing Population: 7,116,302 (July 2000 est.)
0-14 years: 18% (male 676,756; female 602,434)
15-64 years: 71% (male 2,520,473; female 2,563,355)
65 years and over: 11% (male 342,942; female 410,342) (2000 est.)
Population growth rate: 1.35% (2000 est.)
Birth rate: 11.29 births/1,000 population (2000 est.)
Death rate: 5.93 deaths/1,000 population (2000 est.)
Net migration rate: 8.12 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2000 est.)
at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.12 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female
total population: 0.99 male(s)/female (2000 est.)
Favorite thing Location: Eastern Asia, bordering the South China Sea and China
Geographic coordinates: 22 15 N, 114 10 E
Map references: Southeast Asia
total: 1,092 sq km
land: 1,042 sq km
water: 50 sq km
Area - comparative: six times the size of Washington, DC