Currency and prices in Hong Kong

Hong Kong

What currency do I pay with in Hong Kong? How much do goods cost in a regular supermarket and how much in a restaurant? And how much does a week in the city cost? Find out in this chapter.

How much do hotels cost? Find out hotel prices now

Hong Kong dollar (HKD)

The local currency is the Hong Kong dollar, which is divided into 100 cents. It is used in the form of coins of 10, 20, 50 cents and $1, $2 or $5.

Bank notes are worth $10, $20, $50, $100 and $500.

  • International currency code: HKD (numeric code 344)
  • Currency symbol: HK$, $ or

Can I pay with Chinese renminbi or Macau pataca?

Although Hong Kong is part of China, it is not normally possible to pay with Chinese renminbi (renminbi). Some retailers accept Chinese currency, but usually at a very unfavourable exchange rate.

While it's perfectly normal to pay in Hong Kong dollars in neighbouring Macau, the reverse is not true in Hong Kong you can't pay with Macau pataca anywhere.

The Hong Kong dollar is pegged to the US dollar and using the USD at the exchange rate 1 usd = 7,80 hkd.

Currency exchange and card payment

Euros, dollars or other major currencies can be exchanged on arrival at the airport or later at most banks or exchange offices. Banks are only open on weekdays from 8am to 6pm and some on Saturdays.

The fixed peg to the US dollar makes it more convenient to exchange this currency.

The only exchange offices at the airport are those of the official banks, which offer fairly good rates. The city centre is full of smaller exchange offices, but they often have hidden fees.

ATM card withdrawals can be made everywhere and ATMs can be found literally on every corner or in metro stations. ATMs do not charge for foreign card withdrawals.

Visa or Mastercard payments are not nearly as common in Hong Kong as they are in Europe or America. However, you can easily pay by card in all supermarkets, 7-Eleven and Circle K mini-markets, shopping malls and card payments are slowly spreading to public transport.

However, cash is still essential in Hong Kong. Many restaurants don't accept cards at all and, for example, you can only pay with cash with the Octopus Card.

MPay, WeChat and Alipay are also widely used.

How much does it cost - prices in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is very diverse and many things can be found at reasonable, but usually slightly more expensive prices than in Europe or the US and significantly more expensive than in surrounding Southeast Asian countries.

As the place with the most expensive rents in the world, this will have an impact on the price and often you have to factor in extra charges for space or amenities.

The cost of transport here is comparable to prices in Western Europe.

You can eat cheaply at local eateries (often with only Chinese signs, but mostly helpful service).

Examples of prices in Hong Kong

How much does basic food, tourist attractions or transport cost in Hong Kong? Check out this price guide.

Accommodation in a double room (prices per night):

  • Cheap hotel with shared bathroom - from 35 usd
  • 3* hotel - from 70 usd
  • Hotel 4* - from 100 usd
  • Hotel with a view of Victoria Harbour - from 150 usd
  • 10 cheapest hotels in Hong Kong

Restaurant food:

  • A hot main meal in a regular restaurant - 100 hkd
  • Hot main meal at a local bistro - 70 hkd
  • Three-course menu for 2 at a better restaurant in the city centre - 500 hkd
  • Menu in a fast food restaurant - 50 hkd
  • Espresso or Cappuccino - 40 hkd
  • Water 0.33 l - 10 hkd
  • Draft beer - 50 hkd
  • Wine by the bottle - 120 hkd

Food in the supermarket:

  • Water 1.5l - 13 hkd
  • Coca Cola (and other sodas) - 25 hkd
  • Milk 1l - 95 hkd
  • Baked goods - 15 hkd
  • Canned fish - 30 hkd
  • Apples - 14 hkd / kg
  • Bananas - 10 hkd / kg
  • Oranges - 15 hkd / kg
  • Eggs 6 pcs - 15 hkd
  • Rice 1 kg - 9 hkd
  • Chicken meat 500 g -80 hkd


  • Metro fare - 5 hkd to 50 hkd depending on distance
  • Bus fare - 5 hkd to 25 hkd depending on distance
  • All day metro ticket - 65 hkd
  • Ferry fare - 5 hkd to 35 hkd depending on distance
  • Octopus card deposit - 50 hkd
  • Taxi - boarding rate 27 hkd and then 1,90 hkd for every 200 metres / 1 minute wait

Alcohol and cigarettes:

  • Bottle of wine in the shop - from 150 hkd
  • A can of local beer - 17 hkd
  • Cocktails in the bar - 100 hkd
  • A packet of cigarettes - 80 hkd

Tipping and haggling

Tipping is not expected except in better restaurants where it is usually stated on the menu that there will be a "service charge".

Tipping is not given in taxis and is not haggled anywhere in Hong Kong.

How to save money?

The main item on the list will certainly be accommodation and food, transport is relatively cheap in Hong Kong.

Accommodation on the island is usually more expensive than in Kowloon or the New Territories, or for the same price you'll have a smaller place to live, which is already very small.

Another cost saving option is local restaurants. The price difference between the cheaper and more expensive restaurants is quite large, and appearance alone will often tell you a lot. Local restaurants usually don't have menus in English, but if you're not limited by allergies, you can walk around to other tables and choose based on what you see from other diners.

Often restaurants will have photos of the dishes on offer, but be aware that these can vary greatly from the final appearance.

Find the cheapest hostel in Hong Kong

Daily budgets

To give you a better idea, we've prepared three variations of daily budgets.

A budget traveller takes the subway or buses, so they will spend approximately 50 hkd per day. The cheapest accommodation will set you back 450 hkd per night for 2 people.

Breakfast will be sorted out by buying a sandwich at 7-Eleven for 20 hkd, and lunch and dinner will be from a local bistro for about 70 hkd. In total, without visiting any attractions, a day's stay will set you back about 450 hkd per person.

The happy medium includes accommodation in a 3* hotel for 800 hkd per room per night. Once a day you go to a better restaurant for a meal for 100 hkd and the rest of the day you eat from minimarkets or smaller bistros for a total of another 150 hkd.

During your travels you will use the metro and occasionally take a taxi, so on average you will pay around 100 hkd per day. In total your daily budget will be around 800 hkd per person.

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