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First Visit for this African American Male to Hong Kong

First Visit for this African American Male to Hong Kong

Old Mar 27th, 2009, 09:16 AM
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First Visit for this African American Male to Hong Kong

I'm traveling on business to Hong Kong for the first time in May '08. I've been reading up on the culture, do's & dont's respects and places to visit. I've travelled all over but this is my first trip to Asia. Is there anyone out there who has some advice/experiences of what an African American male can expect? Not that I'm expecting racial bias from my Asian business counterparts but I was just curious about nightlife, travel, etc.
Thanks
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Old Mar 27th, 2009, 09:30 AM
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The best thing you can do for yourself is to leave the prejudices of your home country at home.

The people in Hong Kong are too busy trying to make money to care about the color of your skin.

I've had both white colleagues and black colleagues travel with me to Asia and did not see any difference in the way they were treated - nor did any of them tell me of any prejudicial treatment.

Just behave naturally and you'll be fine. Enjoy your trip to Hong Kong - and don't eat too much during the banquets!
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Old Mar 27th, 2009, 01:29 PM
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Not being an African-American male, I can't speak from first hand experience, But a friend of mine who is travels frequently to various parts of Asia tells me that he's never had any problem in large cosmopolitan cities like Hong Kong, Bangkok, Singapore, etc.

You'll find Hong Kong very easy to get around with the subway and taxis. If you expect to use the subway much, do buy an Octopus card... it's also good for the Star Ferry (a must-do). Most of the night clubs are on the Hong Kong side, in Central.

One of our regular posters, Cicerone, lives in Hong Kong and has made some very detailed posts about places to go, restaurants, etc. Look for some of her posts.
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Old Mar 27th, 2009, 11:41 PM
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Hello, HabitualSoul!

I hope you enjoy your first trip to Asia; Hong Kong is a splendid city to be your 'first.' Try to squeeze in a sidetrip over to Macau, if you have the time.

With regard to your main question: I think that you will find yourself to be the only black person in most of your wanderings around town, day and night. Thus, it will not be like the South but more like the North.

For the past several years, I have been traveling to East Asia in the month of May for a 3- or 4-week vacation. While there, I visit 5 or 6 cities, usually including Hong Kong. In any given year, I have seen or glimpsed at most 2 or 3 black persons (whom I have assumed to be American).

While in Beijing (off topic for a moment), the few black Americans I have been with on tour have usually been seen by the Chinese as curiosity objects. Many Chinese wanted to take photos with black persons; many shyly glanced but then quickly turned their heads away when noticed.

I hope my observations are useful to you. Do let us know how your business trip turns out, what you see, what you do, and of course what you experience. Bon voyage!
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Old Mar 28th, 2009, 05:43 AM
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With all respect to johnwm, I can assure habitualsoul that he will not be just about "the only black person" to be seen in Hong Kong. HK is enormously more cosmopolitan than almost all other Asian cities (possibly excluding Singapore), and I would be hard-pressed to think of any nationalities that aren't well represented in Hong Kong. (Take a stroll through the ground floor of Chung King Mansions if you want to see all the nations of the world in 10 minutes.)
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Old Mar 29th, 2009, 02:14 AM
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I am African-American and I have just moved to HK and have been here for 3 weeks. There are many nationalities here. And, yes, you will be the only black person in most settings here in HK, but that shouldn't bother you. I don't feel that I am treated any differently than any where else in the world.

When I was here last time I traveled to Chaing Mai, Thailand and loved it. As stated above, Macau is a nice trip as well. You can go there and see the city in a day. You can also go to Shenzhen, China, but you will need a visa.

I find that the bars are nice and relaxing. There are plenty of people there, but they are not crowded like the ones in New York or London. I like the private dining concept here too. I haven't been to a club yet though.

BTW, it was an adventure to try and find someone to do my hair.
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Old Mar 29th, 2009, 10:20 AM
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Do tell more about finding a barber LJHK. I cannot imagine what that must have been like.
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Old Mar 31st, 2009, 01:14 PM
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Let me just say thank you all... and I hope I didn't give off the wrong vibe.. my prejudices or thoughts of any type of negativity will be left at home and I am looking foward to my trip... I can't wait.. I will be sure to report back to you guys/dolls with my adventure and possibly post pics of any pictures I take if asked.. maybe I should set up shop and charge.. that's a heck of a way to beat this recession.."Come one come all and take your picture with a 6'2 AA Male.. only 250 HKD"... I'm just kidding... Or am I?? LOL.. thanks again
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Old Mar 31st, 2009, 01:19 PM
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LJHK... if you don't mind.. I would love to pick your brain about some bars to go to. I'm there a few days earlier than my associates (squeezed in a little me time). If you ok with that.. you can email me directly at [email protected].. and anyone else for that matter who will be in HK from 5/7 - 5/19
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Old Mar 31st, 2009, 02:35 PM
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habitualsoul

As a Chinese-Canadian who grew up in Hong Kong - I would only say that it is more important that you are mindful of some of the Chinese custom, especially when you are there to do business; even though Hong Kong is a very westinzed.

When you are at a Chinese restaurant, you always pour tea for your superior, colleagues/friends first, and yourself last. Pouring tea just for yourself may be deemed as being uncultured or unrefined (or even rude for some people).
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Old Apr 1st, 2009, 07:02 AM
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To Femi, took a while, but I finally found someone at Salon Chandler named JustinPaul. I hope he does well. I have an appointment for Friday.
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