What is it like to work in Hong Kong!
Updated: Aug 27
Hong Kong is truly an international city. You can find people from literally all across the world working here in different capacities - Europeans, Americans, Indians, Indonesians, Filipinos, Japanese and many more. The city in its limited capacity and size has ample work opportunities to offer. It is a well known fact that all the major banks, insurance companies, IT have their Asia bases in this city.
I got an opportunity to come and work in this city through my IT employer - Cognizant. It has been almost 1 year and the journey has been a roller-coaster ride. Though I can safely compare the city to the likes of Mumbai in various parameters, here are a few things that I find unique to Hong Kong:
People are workaholics!
This goes without saying that people in HK are very hard working and like to work for extra hours. It is not unusual to see people working 11+ hours a day. So if you are planning to move here, be prepared for some late nights!
Hong Kong is not China. It is truly an international city which can boast of people working from all over the world. Your office colleagues would be people from different backgrounds, race, culture and even industry. I got a chance to work with an erstwhile Air Traffic Controller in an Insurance industry! You will not find such experiences in many cities.
When you work with people with different backgrounds, it is very important to be precise and exact so that the communication is well. And that is what HK teaches you. Working here would make you more precise and accurate in your communication.
24 hours city
Not just Mumbai, but even HK never sleeps. You can find buses, super markets and some bars running all night long. At least in the HK Island side you will see always the movement. The 7-11 stores are just everywhere. The sea creek between Island and Kowloon is always refreshing and mesmerizing.
English is everywhere
Barring some of the taxi, buses and tram operators, almost everyone understands English. You will not have any problem unlike China with regards to English. The reason being HK an erstwhile colony of the United Kingdom.
If you think that moving here would mean to compromise on your food habits, think again. There are many Indians, Pakistanis and Nepalis living and working in HK. In fact there is an entire building called as "Chung Ki Mansion" situated in TST area that comprises of many restaurants. Also, there are a few tiffin delivery services that can provide you home cooked food. The Nepali grocery shops help in all our daily needs.
The city must be lauded for its efficient mode of transportation. From trams, metros, buses and taxis - You can find them almost anytime. Of course the metro and Trams run till around 1 AM but there are so well connected that you dont have to worry. Buses are very comfortable and trams are the cheapest. It is constant at 2.6HKD for an adult and 1.3HKD for Child.
Hell No! The city is quite liberal when it comes to drinking and you can literally grab a beer from a 7-11 and can drink on the streets! But yes, no nuisance please!
Healthcare is good but not very convenient. Unlike in India where we can just walk in, HK follows an appointment process and it is not sure if you can get it at the same day. However, there are always emergency services that can take care of you. But be sure to have a medical insurance policy as the healthcare fees is enormous.
This is the biggest and perhaps the only con of the city - Lack of space. If you live in a HK Island, high chances you would end up taking a room of around 130-150 sqft as your residence. That too would be expensive. Farther you go, bigger the house but you will need flatmates to share the high rent with.
This is where I live :P .Yeah it's clean :D
All in all, if at all you get a chance to work in Hong Kong, I would strongly recommend to give it a shot as this would give you an edge in your career and also help you adapt in any multi-ethnic and multi cultural environment.
Planning to visit? Check out this suggested Hong Kong itinerary