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Old 21-10-2016, 07:40   #1
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Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

Not strictly a cruising question, as I'm arriving by air, and not by sail --

What's the best way to get around in these cities? I see that Uber has recently shut down in Hong Kong.

It took me days to figure out how to hail a taxi in Singapore last year, and I don't have the time to repeat the exercise this time, as I have a busy schedule over there.

Any tips? Any killer Android app, or service? I guess I'll be walking a lot in HK as it's pretty compact, but I've never been to Shanghai and this gigapolis somewhat intimidates me . . . .
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Old 21-10-2016, 07:59   #2
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

Have you done a search? There is Trip Advisor, Frommer's, etc.
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Old 21-10-2016, 08:04   #3
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

I asked my daughter and she was in Shanghai this year and says all the taxi cabs are now partnered with Uber and a Chinese uber partner so she couldn't even hail a normal cab. Uber has a monopoly now in Shanghai.

Hong Kong MTRC is way to go.
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Old 21-10-2016, 08:08   #4
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

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Originally Posted by DeepFrz View Post
Have you done a search? There is Trip Advisor, Frommer's, etc.
Of course. But I prefer first hand information from my friends, to what is written by anonymous and usually clueless tourists.
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Old 21-10-2016, 08:09   #5
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

Also best local SIM card, if anyone has experience.
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Old 21-10-2016, 08:42   #6
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

I'm a former airline pilot. Yes Uber in Shanghai. Hong Kong taxis are easy to get from almost any good Hotel. Sim cards are cheap as well as used phones($10-15usd) if yours does not work there.
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Old 21-10-2016, 10:05   #7
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
Of course. But I prefer first hand information from my friends, to what is written by anonymous and usually clueless tourists.
Trip advisor and Lonely planet can be relied upon for the majority, in my experience, and have a much greater number of expat posters with experience in the area. Better bet than in here imho.
Hong Kong is easy, taxis and a very efficient mtr metro system . Note that you can check in to your flight in Kowloon metro station maybe up to a day ahead to get rid of your bags. Hong station as well maybe.
Not been shanghai but in Wuhan in China taxis were cheap and everywhere.
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Old 21-10-2016, 11:07   #8
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

I go to Shanghai 3-5 times a month....and 1-2 times to Hong Kong each quarter. (Airline crew).
Both are very easy to get around via their respective subway, as everything is written in English in the stations.
Download MTR map for Hong Kong...and subway map for Shanghai. (I use 'Metro' brand apps for Shanghai, Beijing and Singapore. Look for them in App Store.) Subways in Shanghai are 1/10th the price of cabs...and most taxi drivers don't speak English. Subways are clean, very efficient and safe!!
Get 'taxi card' from your hotel...has English and Mandarin (Shanghai) and Cantonese (Hong Kong) address written on it for taxi driver, if you need to cab it somewhere.
One word on cabs in Shanghai....avoid cabs that are maroon (lower half of car) and grey (on top half). They usually have smoked out windows. I have been ripped off by these cabs 100% of the time...they take longest route; double back; go around block twice, hoping you don't know where you are going.
Both are great cities!! Lots to see...interesting cultures...and great food!! Especially Hong Kong for food!! Don't hesitate to eat in small local places in either city. Lots of small restaurants have picture menus for us round eyes!! And lots of people speak/understand English in Hong Kong. (Not so true in Shanghai)
I always carry a copy of my passport...and lock my real one in hotel room safe. And I carry my money in a pouch under my shirt around my neck. I've never had problem in either city...but did have problems in other Asian cities. And of course, better safe than sorry.
Enjoy!!
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Old 21-10-2016, 11:26   #9
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

Shanghai has a fantastic subway system and the MagLev from the airport to same shows what should be done in North America.
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Old 21-10-2016, 11:27   #10
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

Hong Kong MTR (subway/underground) is cheap and efficient (and clean) with fares starting at about HK$ 4 (£0.40 US$0.50). Busses are frequent but slower than MTR. Taxis are plentiful with fares starting at about HK$ 22 for the first 2km. All forms of transport are crowded during rush hours.

A local SIM card can be purchased from a CSL store (was PCCW) for about HK$ 68 or 98 giving very cheap local and overseas calls.

An Octopus card is essential for small purchases and transport, it saves carrying a pocket full of coins. This can be purchased and topped up at 7-11 stores or MTR service counters. Each person requires their own card.......if you are "Senior",65+, you can get a green Octopus card which gives discounted travel on public transport.

Other transport includes the Star Ferry (between HK island and Kowloon) the Tram on the island, Public Light Busses everywhere, and ferries to other islands.

Enjoy your visit !
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Old 21-10-2016, 14:59   #11
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Re: Getting Around in Hong Kong and Shanghai

In several Chinese cities I never had much luck hailing cabs calling "TAXI OI TAXI" as dozens went past empty. All the world knows "TAXI" right? Not where I was. No-one seemed to know "TAXI".

Then I learned in Mandarin they are called "Chusu Che", pronounced "ChewZu Churr". The intonation and tone has to be spot on. The pronunciation on Google Translate (from Taxi to Traditional Chinese) sounds accurate to me. Make sure the second syllable goes down a tone, and the last word goes up a two tones or three.

Hard to say, and real hard to yell, but once I got it, the driver's head would turn as if on a string, and then they'd have to stop. It worked a treat.

But of course this may not apply in southern China. And nothing worked to hail a taxi in rush hour in Singapore, other than hotel departure.

But a good lesson - learn some local phrases.
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