From restaurant bookings to salon appointments, fitness classes to transport, there are apps for Hong Kong out there to help you navigate through all the city has to offer. Here are 16 apps to download now.
Hong Kong is one of the most exciting cities in the world with so much to offer any visitor or local. Navigating your way around both its streets and its idiosyncrasies, however, is not always easy. Thankfully, a handful of apps for Hong Kong out there exist to smoothen out the process. Below are the ones we use to make the very best of our brilliant hometown.
Apps for Food & Drink in Hong Kong
From discount deals to booking apps, review sites to bottle deliveries, there’s an app out there to help you eat your way around one of the world’s most exciting gastronomic cities.
This is the discount-booking app that locals swear by when eating out, featuring a great selection of restaurants ranging from casual to fine dining. Select the restaurant you would like to dine at, pick a time, date, and a discount on offer (they offer up to 50% off, depending on the time) and you’re good to go.
Insider Tip: To get the best out of Eatigo, look out for deals early in the week and in the early evening, between 6:00 – 6:30 pm. Or, on WOW Wednesdays, their monthly campaign, partnering restaurants offer a flat 50% off for the entire day.
You might also like Eatigo: Connecting Empty Tables with Empty Stomachs
OpenRice is Hong Kong’s rendition of the popular review platform Yelp. A local favourite for deciding where to eat out, it has everything you need to know about where to go and what to eat – from basic contact info to food reviews and price ranges. Dive headfirst into its images to see what the restaurant and food really look like before making reservations through the app or via social media.
Insider Tip: Special discounts are available only if you make a reservation on the app.
BottlesXO is an app that delivers fine wines, craft beers and artisan spirits in Hong Kong and China. Use the app to follow your order with GPS tracking, access flash sales and promotions, and even find food-pairing suggestions for your bottles. Enjoying a good drink has never been so easy.
Insider Tip: For their Hong Kong service, you can order drinks from 3 pm all the way to midnight and on the weekends from noon to midnight. If you’re popping across the border, they also deliver in Shanghai between 10 AM till midnight, daily.
Apps for Fitness & Wellness in Hong Kong
Whether you’re looking to try something new or connect with the local fitness scene when visiting, download these apps to make the most of Hong Kong’s wellness offering.
Hong Kong is a hiking paradise. This app allows you to plan and track your hiking adventure across the city’s endless panoramic trails. With countless routes to follow – plus recommendations from fellow hikers en route – here’s a way to make the most out of the beautiful scenery and pit stops around you.
Classpass offers a flexible fitness membership to replace signing up for pricey packages at multiple studios. The app gives you unprecedented access to hundreds of studios across the city, allowing you to access thousands of classes in hundreds of locations across 60 cities via a single intuitive interface.
You might also like ClassPass: An Exercise in Success
Looking to catch a meditation or Muay Thai session around town? KFit is an app that connects a wide variety of fitness classes around Hong Kong and offers up to 70% discount for last minute bookings.
With BloomMe, you can instantly connect with Hong Kong’s most famous spas and salons across 12 beauty categories. The app also helps you to find well-reviewed places to ensure that you find the best place to go around you.
Apps for Keeping in Touch in Hong Kong
Making new friends in Hong Kong or reaching out to old ones back home won’t be a problem. Thanks to the superfast broadband connection, you’ll find yourself scrolling through Instagram even on a train going 135km/h (London Underground, take note) whilst using these apps to keep in touch.
Alive: Voice & Text Translator
While Google Translate might be the preferred translation app around the world, Alive should be your pick for translating Cantonese on the go. A voice and text translation tool that allows you to translate speech and text into over 110 languages, it’s sure to come in handy whether you’re just cruising around Hong Kong or popping across to Mainland China (where Google Translate doesn’t work).
Insider Tip: Opt for a premium plan for a week to enjoy unlimited translations and offline download packs.
Download Alive: Voice and Text Translator
Before you begin to panic about not being able to text your mum pictures of dumplings that look like animals (yes, that’s a thing here), you’ll be relieved to know WhatsApp works perfectly in Hong Kong – and is used by many businesses as their optimal mode of bookings and information, too.
Insider Tip: Even if you’re not planning a trip to the Mainland, having WeChat in your back pocket to do business in China will save you a lot of trouble because WhatsApp doesn’t work in China unless you’ve got a VPN.
Heading into China during your stay? WeChat is more than a messaging app in China; it’s a ‘way of life.’ Not only does it allow you to message others, but it also lets you book rail and flight tickets, find local hangouts, book doctor appointments, file police reports, hail taxis, hold video conferences, access bank services and make payments. While it does function in Hong Kong, people prefer to use Whatsapp for messaging and WeChat Pay as a payment option at multiple stores.
Overwhelmed by what you can do with one app?
Learn more here: WeChat for Business
Insider Tip: Get a 4G/3G Mainland China-HK Prepaid SIM Card at any China Mobile Store in Hong Kong for the convenience of data-at-your-fingertips no matter which side of the Hong Kong-China border you’re on. Find the details here.
Apps for Public Transport in Hong Kong
A noisy but efficient network of buses, subways, trams and ferries, Hong Kong’s public transport system may look confusing, but get to grips with it and you’ll find yourself whizzing through all HK’s territories in no time. Don’t forget to get an Octopus payment card for use on all public transport (and plenty of stores), returning it upon leaving to get your HKD 50 deposit back.
The MTR app comes in handy when using the ‘best subway system in the world.’ With a Trip Planner, information on the Airport Express and also the city’s free Airport Express Shuttle Bus service, you can figure out how long your journey will take and how much it will cost.
Insider Tip: The app also provides information on station facilities, shops, exits and nearby malls, and has a helpful section for tourists who want to visit popular attractions.
For step-by-step directions as you travel to any location, attraction, street or major public transit station, just Moovit! View bus and train schedules, arrival times, service alerts and detailed routes on a map. The ‘Get Off’ notifications let you know exactly how far to walk, how long to wait for your line, and how many stops are left.
Insider Tip: If you’re a world traveller and only have space on your phone for one app, Moovit is your best bet: it works in 2,700 cities around the world.
It’s like Google Maps, but better. Citymapper is great for exploring the city when you don’t know where you are. Just press on a nearby bus stop or marker on the map and get nearby information fast without having to first figure out where it is. The app even lets you know the best section of the train to be in to end up closer to your exit. It suggests alternative routes to get to your destination and maps walking directions as you go along. The only downside: it can sometimes lead you astray because of the complex system of footbridges and subways in Hong Kong.
Insider Tip: CityMappers also has a ‘personal trip assistant’ called GO that helps you get from A to B with as little friction as possible.
Apps for Taxis in Hong Kong
Taxis in Hong Kong are a bargain compared to other major cities around the world, but they dance to the beat of their own drum! The apps below should help you find your way via the city’s red, green, and blue cabs.
If you’re ever ‘lucky’ enough to spend a night out at Hong Kong’s infamous party district – Lan Kwai Fong, or stuck out on the streets in the midst of one of the city’s amber rainstorms, you’ll be familiar with one of the city’s taxi rushes – a phenomenon that makes it nigh on impossible to catch a cab. Well, folks, there’s an app to help. With the HK Taxi app, all you have to do is enter your location and phone number and the app will begin to search for the nearest available taxi. The app also has a real-time tracker so you can see where your taxi is and the estimated time of arrival.
Insider Tip: Adding a HKD 20 tip on the HKTaxi App will increase your chances of getting a taxi and save you a couple of minutes of waiting.
HK Taxi Translation App: TakeTaxi
With the HK taxi translation app TakeTaxi, you don’t need to show screenshots of hotel addresses, worry about carrying business cards, or have confusing conversations with your cab driver. The app lets you communicate with taxi drivers in Hong Kong by translating the English names of places into big readable Chinese characters and their phonetic translations. It translates addresses of over 3,000 streets, buildings, schools, hospitals, beaches, parks and sightseeing spots around Hong Kong.
Insider Tip: With the app, you can also save your favourite locations and download the offline translation for later use.
An expensive option in a city of 18,000 licensed cabs, Uber in Hong Kong is best used for longer distances such as remote hiking spots such as the High Island Reservoir.
Insider Tip: The MTR works best for getting from one part of the city to the other (for example, HK Island to Kowloon), especially when getting to and from the airport.
Here for a short trip?
Maybe we can help you out. Our co-working spaces at the Hive Spring offer a professional network of innovators, creatives and entrepreneurs that span across the Asia-Pacific. Just email us at [email protected] for more details.
21 Things To Do in Hong Kong That Don’t Involve Alcohol
Our Guide To The Absolute Best Pizzas In Hong Kong