Hong Kong Travel Dictionary: Octopus

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Octopus is a common electronic payment system in Hong Kong. An Octopus card is at a standard credit card size. Electronic payment is made by waving this proximity card (i.e. RFID) at an Octopus terminal. Octopus payment is accepted in most transportation and major retail stores, making it simple and easy to pay for travel, food and common merchandise.

Tourists are recommended to get an Octopus Card upon arrival. Any person may loan an Octopus Card with a HKD $50 refundable deposit. In theory, one may 'own' the card for any period of time. There are different versions of Octopus in all sizes and shapes, some are available for purchase (i.e. non-refundable).  

Before you can pay with an Octopus Card, you must charge (load or reload) the card with cash. This can be done at all MTR stations, most convenient stores, supermarkets, chained coffee and fast-food stores. Automatic reloading is available to those who own a Hong Kong credit card and is recommend to those who wish to stay in Hong Kong for an extended period.

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