To be honest, Hong Kong was never actually at the top of my bucket list of places I wanted to travel. It’s definitely on my list of places I want to go to, but I found my upcoming trip sort of at random.
Cost of Hong Kong Travel
You can get away with traveling to Hong Kong on a small budget if you really want to. The US dollar is currently really strong compared to the weak Hong Kong dollar. The Hong Kong dollar is at its lowest in three decades. That means that my money will go a little further than it normally would which is lucky for me since I’ll be traveling right before Christmas. I need to make sure I can still spoil my niece with gifts.
Besides the exchange rate, traveling to Hong Kong is affordable overall. You can stay at a pretty nice hotel for under $100 per night, if hotels are your sort of thing. In terms of Airbnb studio apartments, I’m seeing them for around $60-$80 per night for nice places in good locations.
I’ll likely be staying in hostels that go for about $20-$45 a night for the ones I’m looking at.
Food in Hong Kong
I wrote plenty about Hong Kong’s food scene in my post about things to do in Hong Kong. Everyone I know that has been to Hong Kong has told me that it is a foodie paradise.
I love going to cities with good street food culture, and people rave about the Dai Pai Dongs (street food stalls) in Hong Kong. This is also a great opportunity to try a lot of cuisines that I’ve never seen before. When I travel I try and be adventurous with the foods I eat, so I’ll likely be trying the snake soup and some other local delicacies.
The food is also CHEAP! The world’s cheapest Michelin Star restaurant is in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong Culture
Embarrassingly enough, when I booked my flight, I thought that Hong Kong was a part of China. In my defense, it technically is part of China, almost how Guam and Puerto Rico are “part of America.” I did know that it was a former British colony though, so I’ve always been interested in seeing how that shaped the culture.
One thing I have been fascinated with my entire life was the religion in that region like Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. Living in the United States you don’t really cross them that often, but they are fascinating religions to me with customs I’d like to learn about. I’m also going to totally geek out whenever I step foot into any of the temples or monasteries.
Day Trips from Hong Kong
I’m not one to make intense itineraries when I travel because I like to keep things open in case there is something exciting worth trying. There are two-day trips from Hong Kong that I’m going to leave on the table that I’m looking forward to the possibilities of.
Macau is pretty much the Las Vegas of Asia, except on a grander scale. It’s a super short trip from Hong Kong so I’ll likely end up over there for a day or so making some bad decisions.
I’m not so sure anymore about going to Shenzhen, China. That was on my mind when I originally booked my flights just so I can drop into China for a bit. With everything going on with the trade war right now I’m not sure if that is going to be a good idea when my Hong Kong trip happens.
English Speaking in Hong Kong
I’m under the assumption that Hong Kong is one of the easiest Asian countries to overcome the English language barrier. For over a century the region was a colony of Great Britain. Part of the deal was to return it to Chinese rule in the late 1990s which happened in 1997.
Because of the British ruling, the language also made an imprint on society. I’ve seen that Asian countries like China and Japan have a majority of their signs only in their language and symbols. Hong Kong has a decent amount of signage and announcements in both Cantonese and English. I shouldn’t get too lost with that crutch.
About 55% of the people in Hong Kong speak at least some English which is the 5th highest rate behind Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, and India (source). So with my math, that means that for every person that I can’t understand, there will be another person that I can get directions from.
Why Solo Hong Kong Travel?
I’m definitely nervous about traveling solo for my first ever trip to Asia. Traveling alone is a lot of fun for me though. I love getting myself lost in busy cities like Hong Kong. It’s difficult to do that with another person. You’ll end up having to mutually agree on everything from what to see and where to eat.
My flight was also booked on a whim, so I wasn’t planning the trip at all. It’s hard to find someone on a Tuesday morning that wants to immediately book a trip with you. It’s especially difficult for a place on the other side of the planet. Yeah, the earth is round to all you flat earthers!
Cheap Flights to Hong Kong
Well this was pretty much the biggest factor in deciding to travel to Hong Kong.
As I said, I booked this trip completely on a whim. A week before buying the flight tickets I had signed up for Scott’s Cheap Flights. I ended up paying for the premium membership not expecting to find anything worth booking for a few months. Then I woke up on a Tuesday morning with an alert on my phone that there were round trip flights to Hong Kong from LAX for about $340!
This was about 5:00 in the morning and my eyes were barely adjusted to the light on my cell phone. I was recently looking up countries with ancient monasteries and Buddhist temples so when I saw that email I immediately thought about those possibilities. I rolled out of bed to my computer and bought a ticket for around Thanksgiving.
Being a savvy and cheap traveler I made sure to check with my Chase Ink Rewards and saw that I had plenty of points to cover buying the round trip flights. I also finally dragged myself to book a flight to Orlando. My family has been guilt-tripping me into going on that family vacation to Disney World. And after booking both round trip flights…I still have points to spare!
Companies Mentioned in this Post
Chase Ink – I have an LLC for my side businesses that I use a Chase Ink credit card for. I signed up for that card for the low annual fee and the 50,000 bonus points for signing up. If you end up signing up for an account using my link you can qualify for 80,000 bonus points. I’ll get rewarded with 20,000 myself and be forever grateful.
Scott’s Cheap Flights – You don’t have to sign up for the premium membership to get the deals. You can go ahead and get the free membership to find plenty of cheap flights. I feel like the only benefit to paying is they’ll email you immediately about deals from your local airports. If you spend all day on a computer you can keep a tab open and reload it throughout the day. I get no affiliate commissions for sending you there. I’m just a big fan of Scott’s Cheap Flights.
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