Last updated: Nov, 2011
(With external links to public transit providers)
The MTR (Mass Transit Railway) now runs all railway lines in the Hong Kong Special Administration Region, including Light Rail but excluding Hong Kong Island Trams. Transfer among all lines at all interchange stations is possible without paying twice. Ngongping 360 is under a separate toll system (and it is out of service currently).
Buses in Hong Kong are very convenient, if you know how to use them. Buses are run by various companies. Except for transferring at designated transfer stations served by New Territories buses, transferring between buses means paying twice. Choosing the right bus route that directly reaches your destination saves you time and money. Bus Routes numbered with "X" means express (such as 68X), and buses numbered "M" means you can connect to the MTR (such as 45M). There are three major bus companies, KMB, New World Firstbus, and Citibus. Some numbers are repeated like the number 1 in Kowloon and number 1 in Hong Kong Island are completely different buses. Watch the destination of buses when boarding.
The famous tramway, a cheap and good way to see Hong Kong, runs more or less along the Island Line (the blue line) from Sau Kei Wan to Kennedy Town, west of Sheung Wan. There is a loop line to Happy Valley, near Causeway Bay. No trams travel the entire line though, watch the destination sign.
The peak tram travels between Victoria Peak and Central. The peak tram is more expensive, as it is a major tourist attraction. The peak tram terminal is located near the back side of the Bank of China headquarters.
Service, Route Information, and Route Search
Fares on the MTR and KCR depend on how many stations and the distance you travel (instead of zones). You need to decide where you get off when purchasing tickets. Most locals pay their fare using the "Octopus Card", a card that allows you to pass through turnsiles without taking your fare card out. (People just place their handbags or wallets on the machine and pass within a second, it's super efficient).
Octopus Cards are highly recommended, there is a HK$50 refundable deposit, and you will enjoy some discounts. You prepay at automated machines at any stations. The minimum amount of prepayment is HK$50. The Octopus Card is accepted by every mode of transport (MTR, KCR, buses, trams, peak tram, ferry, and minibuses) except for some taxis and intercity services.
Airport to City
The MTR Airport Express takes you to Downtown Hong Kong (Central) in 23 minutes (See timetable). It is comfortable and very luggage-friendly, but pricey. For visitors on a budget, ask the staff for direction on airport buses. The terminal is located at the southern end of the Airport Terminal. Buses numbered with "A" are direct buses, while the cheaper "E" buses take you there with more stops along the way.
You need your passport (or equivalent travel documents) to the Mainland or Macau. Check for visa requirement for your travel document.
Macau and Western Pearl Delta