Settling in Hong Kong

Settling in a new city is often a challenge. This article gives you an overview of the different aspects of living in Hong Kong and tips for settling in.

General Information for New Arrivals

To facilitate the early integration of new arrivals into the local community, the Government regularly publishes the following guides and handbooks.

Guide to Living in Hong KongYour Guide to Services in Hong KongService handbook for new arrivals from the Mainland (available in Chinese only)

Registering for the Hong Kong Identity Card

You should register with the Immigration Department for a Hong Kong identity card once you arrive in Hong Kong. Hong Kong identity cards are required on many occasions to identify yourself as a Hong Kong resident. You should keep the card in good condition and carry it with you at all times, which is a statutory requirement for person aged 15 or over.

Hong Kong identity cards and right of abodeAppointment booking for registration of Hong Kong identity cardHong Kong identity card application form

Housing

You can choose to own an apartment or rent a flat when you first settle in Hong Kong.

Renting a domestic propertyBuying a Dometsic PropertyInformation on private property & building management in Hong Kong

Transport

Hong Kong has a comprehensive and sophisticated transport system comprising a wide range of public transport modes.

Overview of public transport in Hong KongSearch for public transport route

Employment

The Labour Department provides free employment services for job seekers who are lawfully employable in Hong Kong. You can also refer to the code of practice against discrimination in the workplace issued by the Home Affairs Bureau for your rights in employment.

Information on job searchingCode of practice against discrimination in employment

If you own a non-local qualification, it may need to be assessed when you are looking for a job. There are also many opportunities for vocational training and continuing education.

Hong Kong Council for Accreditation of Academic and Vocational QualificationsInformation on continuing education and vocational training

Taxation

Once you are employed or hold an office, you will be chargeable to salaries tax on your income arising in or derived from Hong Kong. If you commence to carry on a trade, business or profession in Hong Kong, you have to apply for a business registration and you will be chargeable to profits tax on all profits arising in or derived from Hong Kong.

Information on taxes in Hong Kong

Health Services

Public health services are all easy to access and are usually free or offered at low cost to the general public.

Information on hospitals and clinics

Social Services

There is a wide range of services and activities for new arrivals, such as familiarisation courses, employment seminars, language classes, experience sharing and visits, offered by the government and non-governmental organisations.

Services & activities for new arrivals from the Mainland on district levelList of NGOs offering services and activities for new arrivals from the Mainland

Education for Children

Education and support services are provided for newly arrived children to assist them to integrate into the education system and community in Hong Kong.

Education and support services for newly arrived childrenEducation services for non-Chinese speaking studentsGeneral information about education in Hong Kong

Emergencies

For emergency assistance, including making fire or ambulance calls, you can dial 999. In cases of crime, you can also report to the Hong Kong Police at the nearest police station.

Contact details of police stationsFire services and rescue from the Fire Services Department
Last review date: June 2015