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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Hong Kong International Airport

In the past 200 years, Hong Kong has been a major transportation hub in Asia. It all began with a seaport for vessels from the West, then to an airport near Kowloon City on the peninsula. The days when aeroplanes descended into residential areas and landed at the "old" Hong Kong International "Kai Tak" Airport were over when it was relocated to Chek Lap Kok on the Lantau Island in 1998. 

Hong Kong International Airport

The "new" Hong Kong International Airport is designed and equipped to handle a huge number of daily passengers and cargo flights. Terminal 2 "T2" and the Skyplaza were opened in 2007 to accommodate more check-in counters (mainly for budget airlines) and shop. All the departure and arrival facilities are located at the original terminal, Terminal 1.

No hiring fee required for trolleys

The customs and airport crew at HKIA are very efficient. Most travellers would be able to leave the airport within 1 hour after touchdown. The arrival hall has clear signs directing travellers to the various public transportation terminus, carparks and pick up area.

Traditional check-in counters and self check-in kiosk

The departure service is also excellent. The airport does get busy in holiday seasons. Unless there is a major emergency, the queuing time at the check-in counters are minimal.

Since its relocation to the rather remote Lantau Island, the Hong Kong International Airport has energized the area. Attractions such as the Ngong Ping Village, Tian Tan "Big" Buddha and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort were opened, offering more sight see opportunities for the once rural island.

Departure Hall on the first floor; Arrive Hall on the ground floor

The Lantau Island is connect to city by the Tsing Ma Bridge, a motorway system and a toll tunnel. The quickest way to town is by the Airport Express Trains. Free shuttle buses to the "mainstream" hotels are available at the "Kowloon" and "Hong Kong" Stations. If you are a frequent traveller who can spare 30 minutes to research on a bus route to your hotel, we would recommend bus as the cheapest and still comfortable means of transport. Of course, taxis are the easiest option if you have plenty of luggage and spare cash.

Clear signage at the arrival hall