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Thread: Hong Kong - a question.

  1. #1
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    Default Hong Kong - a question.

    Hi all,

    I will be going to Hong Kong and I was wondering if the people there (hawkers, vendors etc) speak Mandarin? You see, I don't speak any Cantonese at all (though I understand simple words) and I'm afraid there will be problems communicating.

    Also, are there any tips for travelling to Hong Kong? Thanks for any inputs.

    Cheers!!

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    Yes, majority will be able to speak english & chinese, you shouldn't hit any problems there.

    Things to take note are pick pockets, just be very careful when you're moving in crowded areas, it's pretty ok to carry cameras around and walk like in SG. It's quite safe actually.

    Visit Mong Kok, Tsim Sha Tsui, and the Peak



    Psst... help me buy D2X back can?

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    Hi all,

    I will be going to Hong Kong and I was wondering if the people there (hawkers, vendors etc) speak Mandarin? You see, I don't speak any Cantonese at all (though I understand simple words) and I'm afraid there will be problems communicating.

    Also, are there any tips for travelling to Hong Kong? Thanks for any inputs.

    Cheers!!
    when they see that you are chinese, surely will converse with you in cantonese but i'm a banana in their eyes too! I can't speak cantonese to save my life (once chased by triad there cos i took their pictures). haha!

    but please go, there are easy ways to find food, just point to meals or ohter ppl's food when eating.

    For shopping , no problem, the sales are very friendly now compared to post 1997. YOu can speak Mandrain and they will understand you. My feeling is that their English is better so try that too.

    Cabs are more difficult, of all the 5 trips i made there they always take to the wrong hotels, show your hotel card address to them.

    Learn some basic cantonese, like my favourite food, now lum mee (beef stew noodles) . Please try their milk tea, any shop, afterthat you find almost 80% of coffeeshops cannot make a decent cup milk tea, its the milk they use and the tea leaves are not recyled to death. The road side stalls offers great interesting food too! Go try their roast goose!

    heehee, back to editing, so much for HK.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by espn
    Yes, majority will be able to speak english & chinese, you shouldn't hit any problems there.

    Things to take note are pick pockets, just be very careful when you're moving in crowded areas, it's pretty ok to carry cameras around and walk like in SG. It's quite safe actually.

    Visit Mong Kok, Tsim Sha Tsui, and the Peak



    Psst... help me buy D2X back can?
    Thanks for the info. D2X? Should be ok but you need to pass me the cash first..... if you trust me that is! hehehehe

  5. #5

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    ok remeber to get this and that for mi hor.. I already mail you my shopping list liao... :P

    Have a nice trip... .. hehhehee

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    I will be going to Hong Kong
    When do you plan to go?

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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    Thanks for the info. D2X? Should be ok but you need to pass me the cash first..... if you trust me that is! hehehehe
    Urm you pay first la! you can trust me


    Remember to try out all those small food stalls at the junctions or along the roads, pretty nice food they have there

  8. #8

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    when are you going to hk?

    i got back in june from hk, planning to go either in nov or feb for a few weeks.
    anyone else game to go??


    they can't speak mandarin!! i was trapped!! so i reverted to english and they could understand and speak it really well.

    cantonese is easy to pick up, get a few easy emergency phrases.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    Hi all,

    I will be going to Hong Kong and I was wondering if the people there (hawkers, vendors etc) speak Mandarin? You see, I don't speak any Cantonese at all (though I understand simple words) and I'm afraid there will be problems communicating.

    Also, are there any tips for travelling to Hong Kong? Thanks for any inputs.

    Cheers!!
    I went in August. I couldn't speak cantonese except say good morning. not very useful. I ended up eating macs when my cantonese-speaking friend was not accompanying me. Usually in shops I just smile and say in english that I don't speak *smile smile* they understand...

    I liked Tsim sha tsui best...big la. and I like shopping.

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    OK. This one must use for bargaining:

    - Wa! Ho kwai wor, pian d la (Wow, very expensive, cheaper la.)

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverfrond
    when are you going to hk?

    i got back in june from hk, planning to go either in nov or feb for a few weeks.
    anyone else game to go??


    they can't speak mandarin!! i was trapped!! so i reverted to english and they could understand and speak it really well.

    cantonese is easy to pick up, get a few easy emergency phrases.
    i will go back in nov for a few weeks

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    Hi all,

    I will be going to Hong Kong and I was wondering if the people there (hawkers, vendors etc) speak Mandarin? You see, I don't speak any Cantonese at all (though I understand simple words) and I'm afraid there will be problems communicating.

    Also, are there any tips for travelling to Hong Kong? Thanks for any inputs.

    Cheers!!
    most do speak and listen mandarin becos of the china market

    Hong Kong Place Of Interest

    Hong Kong Island 香港島
    - Central 中環
    - Lan Kwai Fong 蘭桂芳
    - The Peak 山頂
    - Statue Square 皇后像廣場
    - Legislative Council Building 立法會

    - CausewayBay 銅鑼灣
    - Just walk around in this most crowded area in hk and shop around
    - There is a part where you can view the night scence of the victoria harbor also pretty good spot

    - Wan Chai 灣仔
    - same just walk aroung or you can take a tram if you dun want to walk

    - Aberdeen 香港仔
    - Ocean Park 海洋公園

    - Stanley 赤柱
    - Sunday Street Market

    - Other
    - Bo Ma Shan 寶馬山
    - Another good spot to view the victoria harbor


    Kowloon 九龍
    - Mong Kok 旺角
    - Tung Choi Street a.k.a. Women Street 通菜街 / 女人街
    - Sai Yeung Choi Street 西洋菜街 (Full of Camera Shop)
    - Fa Yuen Street 花園街 (Full of Sport shoe shop)

    - Tsim Shs Tsui 尖沙咀
    - Star Ferry Harbor 天星馬頭
    - Star Avenue 星光大道

    - Yau Ma tei 油痲地
    - Temple Street 廟街

    - Wong Tai Sin 黃大仙
    - Wong Tai Sin Temple 黃大仙廟

    - Other
    - Fei Ngo Shan 飛娥山
    - A pretty good spot to view nigh scence also


    New Territory 新界
    - Tai Wai 大圍
    - Che Kung Temple 車公廟

    - Tai Po 大埔
    - Lam Tsuen Wishing Tree 林村許願樹

    - Tsing Ye 青衣
    - Tsing Ma Bridge 青馬大橋

    - Sai Kung 西貢
    - Sea Food Street 海鮮街


    Lautau Island 大嶼山
    - Po Lin Monastery & The Big Buddha 寶蓮寺 / 天壇大彿
    - Tai O 大澳

    Need more info on actually what so special about these places ???
    www.google.com.hk or
    www.discoverhongkong.com or
    ask me ~
    Last edited by latmo; 4th March 2005 at 09:45 AM.

  13. #13

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    I think if you don't know a smattering of cantonese, you'll be like a fish out of water. However, don't let that daunt you ... grow a thick skin ... for meals, walk around, see what people are eating, point to what's on people's tables or in picture menus. And if you go to eat dim sum, no issue, they'll push the carts around, and you just pick and choose. Always smile ... you're a stranger in a strange land.

    But you'll enjoy it ... HK's a bit eccentric in many ways, but I always enjoy going there (but then, I can say that of all the places I've been to as well )

    Do yourself a favor, and fully resist the temptation to walk into a McDonalds or KFC ... you'll likely enjoy yourself more without that safety blanket. But pick up some tour guides, etc ... go to the library, borrow LPs or Fodors ...

    BTW, even though many people do it, also resist the temptation to bring the roast goose back here ... it tastes crap after reheating, you gotta eat it freshly cooked. Besides, it gives you an excuse to go back again

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    Wow!! That was a lot of input!! Thanks guys for the inputs!! And a big thanks to you latmo for that detailed info!

    Actually I will be going after my wedding in Nov cos I can't take long leave for a proper honeymoon. So just going for a short break. My wife and I were worried that communication would be a problem. But I guess you guys cleared any doubts I had.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by NitroTech
    Wow!! That was a lot of input!! Thanks guys for the inputs!! And a big thanks to you latmo for that detailed info!

    Actually I will be going after my wedding in Nov cos I can't take long leave for a proper honeymoon. So just going for a short break. My wife and I were worried that communication would be a problem. But I guess you guys cleared any doubts I had.
    WAH!!!

    Congra!!! hehehee.e.e.

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    Currently due to the influx of mainland Chinese tourists to Hong Kong, most department stores will employ a few mandarin speaking sales staffs. Of course not everyone will speak mandarin, but you need to try. And you should speak the proper mandarin, not the half-English half-Chinese mandarin. However, if you go to those little shops, roadside stores, they may not be able to communicate in mandarin, but they will try to understand what you want. Most ppl are very polite nowadays.

    But if u intend to shop for cameras, pls avoid shops in Tsim Sha Tsui/ Nathan Road. They look and behave like the Lucky Plaze/ Sim Lim style. You can smell them from far away.

    (I am a HKer many years ago and nowadays still go to HK 2-3 times a year)

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