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How to Get Around Hong Kong on the MTR

Did you know that Hong Kong is home to one of the world’s safest and most efficient train systems? The entire network is monitored from an advanced control center that boasts a black incident box that aims to resolve issues in 2 minutes. Everything from sick commuters to track problems are dealt with swiftly, making it an enviable train system for cities everywhere.

The Hong Kong railway system takes around 5 million trips in the average weekday. Navigate like a pro with our handy guide to getting around on the Hong Kong MTR.


Hong Kong MTR

Hong Kong MTR

The Mass Transit Railway (MTR) is a common mode of transport, spanning across Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and the New Territories. It consists of 91 railway stations, and 68 light rail stops, all connected by 11 train lines. The train system is open from early morning until late at night, with trains running as early as 5:50am and the last train reaching until 12:59am.


Tip: Steer clear of huge crowds by avoiding rush hours at 8:30am – 9:00am and 6:00pm – 7:00pm.


Tickets and Fares

MTR Single Journey Ticket (Wikimedia Commons/ATR50, used under CC BY-SA 4.0)

Purchase the Single Journey Ticket if you have a single destination in mind. It comes in two types: adult and concessionary. The latter is available for children aged 3 – 11 and senior citizens aged 65 and above. The fare starts at HK$3.50 and is calculated based on the distance traveled. You can buy the ticket in ticket issuing machines available in all stations.


Tip: Just tap your ticket on the reader at the ticket gate to enter the train station. Then, insert your ticket into the ticket slot upon exiting.


Octopus Card

MTR Octopus Card (Flickr/cogdogblog, used under CC0 1.0)

Opt for a more convenient payment method with the Octopus Card. Introduced in September 1997, the smart card has made commuting hassle-free with its ease of use. This stored value card works on the MTR, buses, ferries, trams, and taxis. You can even use the card to pay for food and drinks in select convenience stores and retail outlets. No need to rummage through your bag for loose change!


Tip: You can reload your Octopus Card in several locations such as 7-Eleven, Circle K, Mcdonald’s, Starbucks, Watsons, and more.


MTR System Map

MTR System Map (Wikimedia Commons/Emphrase, used under CC0 1.0)

There are 11 color-coded train lines in the Hong Kong railway system. These are:

  1. Disneyland Resort Line
  2. East Rail Line
  3. Island Line
  4. Kwun Tong Line
  5. Ma On Shan Line
  6. Tseung Kwan O Line
  7. Tsuen Wan Line
  8. Tung Chung Line
  9. West Rail Line
  10. Light Rail
  11. Airport Express

Airport Express

Hong Kong Airport Express

For the fastest way between the city and airport, hop aboard the Airport Express. The high-speed train takes around 24 minutes to reach Hong Kong Island. There’s also a free shuttle bus from Kowloon and Hong Kong stations to major hotels.


Airport Express travelers can also make use of in-town check in, a handy feature where you can drop off your luggage and roam around the city or airport bag-free. You can claim your bags once your land in your destination.


Travel Passes for Tourists

As a tourist, you’re able to take advantage of MTR travel passes for your specific needs.


Get your hands on the Airport Express Travel Pass, which costs HK$250 for a one-way ticket and HK$350 for a round-trip ticket. In addition, you can also access unlimited travel on the MTR, Light Rail, and MTR bus for 3 consecutive days. Alternatively, enjoy 1 day of unlimited travel on the MTR and Light Rail with the Adult Tourist Day Pass (HK$65) and Child Tourist Day Pass (HK$30).


Tip: Master the train system with the MTR Mobile app, one of the useful travel apps we recommend on your trip to Hong Kong.


Journey around the city on Hong Kong’s reliable railway system. Travel like a local by getting your own Octopus Card, or take advantage of tourist passes such as the Airport Express Travel Pass and Tourist Day Passes. Visit Hong Kong Disneyland, Mong Kok markets, and other top attractions with the Hong Kong MTR.