6 October 2016

Albane - Expat in Hong Kong

Albane - Expat in Hong Kong

We’ve had the chance to talk to Albane, 26, a French expat who has moved to Hong Kong with her partner. Ms. Albane who has been living there for two and a half years, now works as a purchasing manager.

Read more about her experiences in the full interview below.


Q: Where are you from originally?

A: France – South West.


Q: What made you move out of France?

A: I wanted to start my career in a dynamic and multi-cultural country.


Q: Where are you living now? How did you come to choose this new country of residence?

A: Hong Kong – same reason as what made me move.


Q: How long have you been living in Hong Kong?

A: Two and a half years.


Q: Are you living alone or with your family? If yes, how are they adjusting to the Expat Lifestyle?

A: In couple. We adjust exactly the same way – coming, finding a job.


Q: Do you miss home and family sometimes? How do you cope with homesickness?

A: Of course – eating French food and skyping.


Q: What do you think about the locals?

A: Smily – dynamic & in their own world.


Q: Was it easy making friends and meeting people? Do you mainly socialise with other expats in Hong Kong? How did you manage to find a social circle there?  

A: Not easy to find some friends even if there is a big French community – yes my friends are mostly all expats – going out has been the best way.


Q: How does the cost of living in Hong Kong compare to your home?

A: Expensive.

  • Q: How much is a cup of coffee?

A: 4 euros.  

  • Q: How much is a meal in an inexpensive restaurant?

A: 4 euros.

  • Q: How much is a meal in an expensive restaurant?

A: 300 euros.

  • Q: How much is a bottle of wine? How about a pack of cigarettes?

A: 15 euros basic one – 7 euros.


Q: Do you have any tips for future expats when it comes to opening a bank account in Hong Kong?

A:  Patience and a bit of saving.


Q: How will you describe your experience with government paperwork such as applications for Visa and work permits? Why is that so?

A: With employment, a visa was an easy thing for me – apparently not the case for everybody – administration is very efficient here.


Q: Would you say that healthcare in Hong Kong is reliable? Any preferred clinics or advice for expats?

A: By chance, I didn’t go to the doctor often – but I pretty confident about health care in HK.


Q: Did you secure a health insurance in your home or Hong Kong? What should be the essentials in the coverage for expats, in your opinion?

A: Good working insurance first – if not better to have an adding one in your host country.


Q: What was the most memorable about the packing and moving process to Hong Kong? Which was the mover you chose and how was your experience with them?

A: Only one baggage for me, so sorry I can’t help.


Q: What is the biggest challenge that you have faced as a new expat?

A: n/a


Q: What do you think are the positive and negative sides of living in Hong Kong?

A: Positives: dynamic job market – big city, countryside and beaches in the same place - good places to go out – Asian culture.  Negatives: missing your country – expensive rent and small living apartment


Q: What are the best things to do in the area? Any particular recommendations for future expats?

A: Walk and discover – you can visit HK side/ Kowloon side – countryside by hiking – spend time to the beaches.


Q: Do you have plans to move to a different country or back home in the future?

A: It’s not planned yet.


Q: What tips will you give to expats living in the country?

A: Don’t give up if you come to launch a company or find a job.


Q: Do you have favourite websites or blogs about your host country?

A: HK magazine.