Top Reasons to Relocate to Hong Kong
Are you considering a move to Hong Kong to develop your career or take on new professional challenges? There are more great reasons to relocate than you think, and the Kingpin team are here to support you along the way. Explore this latest blog for an insight into our perspective on expats relocating to Hong Kong.
Hong Kong's population reached a whopping 7.3 million in 2017, around 2 million more than Sydney (5.3 million) and Singapore (5.6 million). Hong Kong also possess a large expat community, with 4.6% of the population being expats, that’s just over 335,000.
Being ruled by the British until 1997, Hong Kong continues to be influenced by Western culture and upholds a strong financial system. The destination therefore boasts a thriving economy, with a total of 115 countries having embassies, exceeding any other city across the world. In addition, this bustling city accommodates thousands of large companies, hundreds of them being global corporations, emphasising the demand for high profile professionals to relocate.
Before you consider a move to Hong Kong, a visa must be obtained through the General Employment Policy which is free of cost. During the summer of 2018, Hong Kong introduced a new 3-year pilot scheme for new employment visas, intended to not only modernise the system but also streamline the process of admissions from overseas. Once you secure a new role in Hong Kong, your employer will be able to provide excellent support to help coordinate this process smoothly and efficiently.
From towering skyscrapers to challenging hiking trails, you won't short of things to do in this versatile, stunning city. Hong Kong really does offer the best of both worlds, boasting a variety of superior skyscrapers in which over 1,500 are over 100m, whilst offering effortless access to nearby beaches and a welcoming culture to tourists and expats, to name just a few reasons a move to this destination is highly sought for. Surprisingly, 70% of Hong Kong is made up of grass land, over 250 islands and an amazing 300 hills, emphasising the unrivalled opportunities to enjoy time outdoors and get away from everyday hustle and bustle of city life.
Networking and socialising in Hong Kong are one of the key reasons people move to this city, whether you are interested in meeting fellow peers in your industry, meeting new friends or simply finding people that share similar interests as you. An incredibly friendly culture combined with an abundance of clubs to join has created a welcoming and outgoing ethos.
Sports clubs are exceedingly popular in Hong Kong and it is recommended that expats get involved in the great facilities the city offers. Joining a hobby or club can encourage expats to enjoy a great work-life balance, meet the locals and other expats, and create a healthy and active lifestyle out of work. Some of the most popular clubs are golfing, rugby, cricket and recreation just to name a few. Even though most of the city is made up of large buildings and workplaces, there is surprisingly a large vast of greenery areas so you can enjoy time outdoors in your spare time.
Hong Kong has a variety of golf clubs throughout the city, offering the choice of 5 private clubs, and 1 public. There are even 10 public driving ranges on the island, giving you plenty of opportunities to join a club. Some of the most popular golf clubs are Kau Sai Chau Public Golf Course which offers 18 holes, and City Nine Eagles which is an executive 9-hole golf course.
Rugby is one of the most popular sports played in Hong Kong, with over 45 men’s teams and 15 teams for women, you won’t be short of finding a team to suit you and your ability. The season for rugby usually runs from September to March, and if you are just starting out in the sport, there are even opportunities to play touch rugby to get the hang of it.
One of the largest attractions that is not to be missed is the Hong Kong Sevens event, attracting thousands of fans from all over the world to watch some of the greatest rugby players in action and hosted at the Hong Kong Stadium. For more information on this event visit their website: https://hksevens.com/
Since 1841, cricket has been a common sport for locals and remains to be a hit with people of all ages. It is also the fastest growing sport across Hong Kong, with over 60 clubs available for locals and expats.
If you are eager to take up an exciting, unusual hobby in your spare time in Hong Kong, look no further than the vast water sport opportunities. The island boasts over 700km of beautiful coastline, offering many sports such as sailing, windsurfing, diving and so much more.
Joining a social club upon your arrival to Hong Kong is a fantastic way to meet new people, learn about the culture and share your interests. Associations in the city welcome anyone to the clubs, no matter your nationality, beliefs or citizenship. It is also known that most social clubs across the city have a low joining free and host numerous exciting events and experiences for all members throughout the year.
Be prepared to accommodate various weathers and climates if you are planning a move to Hong Kong. The island welcomes very distinct seasons throughout the year, from warm and humid conditions between May and August, to hot, sunny and low humidity between September and January, the more pleasant months of the year. The average temperatures range from roughly 16.5 degrees to a high of 29 degrees in the peak summer months.
Due to the low humidity levels from September to January, these are usually the most popular months to start up a sport or hobby, ensuring a pleasant climate for outdoor activities. Water sports are also mostly available to take part in all year round, thanks to the warm weather and vast volume of activities to join.
Networking in Hong Kong is massive between expats who are known to be extremely friendly and outgoing. Although, we understand it can seem quite daunting, especially when you are trying to settle into a whole new way of life. One of the biggest networking events in Hong Kong is CreativeMornings, which is free to attend and open to everyone in the city. This is a great event to consider if you want to meet like-minded people and gain confidence in your new community.
If you’re looking to explore more about the expat community and their lifestyles, Internations is a great place to start. Internations can point you in the right direction of local clubs, and usually host a monthly event to encourage expats and other residents to meet up and find people who possess similar interests. Learn more about what Internations has to offer here: https://www.internations.org/go/moving-to-hong-kong
Nightlife in Hong Kong is also not one to be missed, and we’re sure you won’t be short of places to visit in this bustling city. Lan Kwai Fong and SoHo are the most popular locations, offering a fantastic variety of restaurants and bars. Lan Kwai Fong is situated in central Hong Kong and boasts over 100 places to eat local cuisine and drinks, whilst SoHo represents a more sophisticated environment, with up-market restaurants and bars.
Becoming an expat in the city of Hong Kong has many attractive traits, standard of living, generous salaries and unrivalled options for families and singletons to name just a few. An incredibly friendly and welcoming ethos combined with fantastic career development opportunities makes Hong Kong a great place to relocate, and the ideal place for expats to increase personal finances, experience new cultures and enhance professional skill set. Working with Kingpin can make this decision and process of relocating less stressful and enjoyable whether you are moving independently or with your family.
If you are interested in a move to Hong Kong or anywhere else in the world and would like to speak to Kingpin International about International Tax Opportunities, across Direct Tax, Transfer Pricing or Indirect Tax please contact a member of the team. Alternatively, view our current vacancies.