At the end of this month I have to go to Hong Kong for business. I have a flight that will arrive Wednesday morning 10:30 at Hong Kong international airport and will leave 2 Fridays later at 12:50 AM. I would like to spend the first two days in Macau, and then move to Hong Kong.

Are there good solution with ferries? How much it will be? What's then the best way to go back to the airport? And finally, do I need special visa? I'm Italian, and if I'm not wrong, I shouldn't need a visa if I stay less than 90 days.


A ferry is the only “normal” way to travel between Hong Kong and Macau (I think you can take a helicopter if you really want to spend a lot of money). There are multiple ferry links connecting different parts of Macau with different parts of Hong Kong.

Given that you don't have all day, you should take the ferry straight from the Hong Kong airport when you land. There are ferries approximately every 2 hours during daytime. You don't even go through Hong Kong immigration at that point, you get out of the airport and into the ferry terminal and directly to Macau immigration. Some airlines can check your luggage up to Macau. The ferry arrives in Macau at the Maritime Terminal.

From Macau to Hong Kong, there are several possible ferries with slightly different prices and schedules. You can check live departure information online. The most frequent is the TurboJet service from Macau Maritime Terminal to Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal; there is also a service to Kowloon.

From Hong Kong Central or Kowloon, the fastest way to go back to the airport is the Airport Express. There are many other, cheaper options by bus or regular subway plus bus (e.g. via Tung Chung in Lantau).

EU nationals can enter both Hong Kong and Macau without a visa for short stays (up to 90 days) for business or tourism.

  • It has to be mentioned that in case you cannot check your luggage through with your airline all the way to Macao, then you cannot use the ferry from the aiport. You will have to leave the airport and go downtown and take a ferry from there. – uncovery May 13 '14 at 0:14
  • @uncovery Oh? I thought it was possible to collect your luggage at the airport and then take the ferry exit. Turbojet even mentions a possibility of “baggage reclaim at Air/Sea Transfer Desk”. Do you have a reference? – Gilles May 13 '14 at 0:21
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    It's a transfer desk. The desk is before the customs area. Once you are through the customs/luggage check, you cannot get there anymore. Reference: My own experience and this here: hongkongairport.com/eng/transport/… ("NOTE: SkyPier ferry service is for transfer passengers only. It is not applicable to passengers originating in Hong Kong.") – uncovery May 13 '14 at 4:05
  • @Giles My airline is KLM, they should provide this service. How can I apply for it? Should I ask them before taking the plain? – Maverik May 13 '14 at 17:56

Gilles did an excellent job of answering this. I just want to add a few things. A few years back my friend and I were staying in Macau and took the Turbo Jet to and from Hong Kong. It took about one hour and cost about $80 each way. We thought about taking a helicopter ride one way just for the experience but it was going to be $350 for a one way flight. The experience wouldn't have lasted that long either because it didn't include any sightseeing. I think it was supposed to be only about a 15 or 20 minute ride. We decided against it, figuring we could spend that extra money at the Macau casinos.

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    The helicopter appears to be $4,100 HKD one-way at present (about USD 530). Not cheap. skyshuttlehk.com/?structure=003 . The cheapest ferry from Central is about $20 US equivalent, IIRC. – Spehro Pefhany May 14 '14 at 6:51

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