By far the best way to get around Hong Kong is on the MTR. The network now provides all subway and train services in Hong Kong. The trains are among the cleanest in the world, with hardly any litter to be found. Eating or drinking on the trains or in the paid areas is prohibited, with fines of HK$2,000.
The five major lines are color-coded for convenience. The Island line (blue) runs along the north coast of Hong Kong Island; the Tsuen Wan line (red) goes from Central under the harbor to Tsim Sha Tsui, then up to the western New Territories. Mong Kok links Tsim Sha Tsui to eastern New Kowloon via the Kwun Tong line (green ). Also serving this area is the Tseung Kwan O line (purple), which crosses back over the harbor to Quarry Bay and North Point. Finally, the Tung Chung line (yellow) connects Central and West Kowloon to Tung Chung on Lantau, near the airport.
The MTR is extremely safe, even late at night. Glass screens have been installed between the edges of platforms and tracks, preventing falls and other mishaps. Emergency stop buttons and help lines are easy to access and ensure instant response from the staff.
Trains run every two to eight minutes during peak times between 6 am and 1 am daily.
Entrances, platforms, and exits are clearly marked and signposted, and all MTR areas are air-conditioned. Most stations have wheelchair access, and all have convenience stores and other shops or services. All MTR stations have free Wi-Fi, and 13 provide computer terminals with free Internet access. Most stations are situated close to public restrooms, and 11 have station toilets for passenger use.
Fares and Schedules
You can buy tickets from ticket machines (using coins or notes) or from English-speaking staff behind glass-windowed Customer Service Centres. Fares range from HK$4.20 to HK$47.50, depending how far you travel. Instead of paying cash, consider a rechargeable (and refundable) Octopus Card. It saves time lining up for tickets and fussing for change, gives you a discounted fare on each trip, and can also be used for buses and other forms of transportation.
Another alternative is the Tourist Day Pass. For HK$55, this pass allows you unlimited travel on the MTR, excluding the Airport Express, for one day. However, you cannot use the pass on other public transport or to purchase items.
MTR. 2881–8888; www.mtr.com.hk.