Updated: Oct 2013 – this is a non-biased, no bullshit independent guide…
Tips for finding cheap flights out of Hong Kong…
- For traditional airlines, use Google’s Matrix software to find out the base prices of your flight – all agencies use this booking engine and the database is for reference only (you cannot book though it). Results include tax. Once you have identified a flight you wish to buy, search for it on the airline’s own website and reserve a seat – usually the price is the same as quoted on the Matrix and you will be better placed to make adjustments, cancel or select seats by booking directly.
- Also check with local comparison engines Zuji, Webjet and Priceline (beware results rarely include tax). Skyscanner is also a good option – state your destination as ‘everywhere’ or use the map tool if you are unfussed about where you want to go but want to check prices. Blog readers also suggested Kayak, which is particularly good for multi-stop flights.
- Some discount low-cost airlines will not be listed on the search engines. Depending on your destination, consider Cebu Pacific (Philippines) Peach (Japan), Dragon Air, Hong Kong Airlines, Jetstar (launching soon), and, in particular, Air Asia. Air Asia have hubs in Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok which may offer cheaper onward flights than heading from HK.
- Check Cathay Pacific’s Fan Fares page for last-minute off-peak deals, both long and short-haul. Subscribe by email.
- For further savings, look into flying from Macau, Shenzhen and Guangzhou, but be sure to factor in the time/costs of getting there-and-back. Air Asia and Tiger Airways fly out of Macau – factor in the ferry journey, or find a cheap ticket on Groupon.
- A detailed list of cheap carriers in the region can be found on Wikitravel.
- Finally, check the Flight Centre, by phone or email, who guarantee to beat any quote.
- Be sure to sign up for Asia Miles and look out for offers with Citibank, HSBC or American Express credit cards which often include airport lounge access and Air Miles. Park ‘n’ Shop Moneyback card points may be converted to Asia Miles. Octopus auto-top-ups can often be linked to credit cards in order to gain Asia Miles too.
- For flights within the Chinese mainland, try TravelZen.
Any more tips? Please leave in the comments below.
Click here for a full list of useful links for expats. Other tips for foreigners residing in HK…
- Accessing iPlayer from Abroad.
- Cheapest Books Delivered to HK.
- Cheapest Mobiles: Top 4 Places.
- China Visa – How to Apply.
- Comprehensive Map of HK Markets & Hidden Malls.
- Escaping HSBC: HK’s Alternative & Least Worst Banking Options.
- Flat-Hunting Guide and Links.
- Flight Tips and Links.
- How to Bypass the South China Morning Post Paywall.
- Local Job Hunting Links.
- Navigating HSBC’s New ATM Card Farce.
- Teaching Work in Hong Kong.