VLDB 2002
28th International Conference on
Very Large Data Bases
Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel
August 20-23, 2002
Hong Kong, China


| Location | Time Difference | Weather in August | Languages | Currency | Banks and Currency Exchange |
Tipping | Electricity | Mobile Phone Network | Visa Requirements |



Hong Kong is located approximately 1,240 miles (1,996 kilometers) south of Beijing. Its exact location is 22oN, 114oE, which is the same latitude as Mexico City, Hawaii and the Bahamas.

Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region of China. It has a total area of about 1,100 square kilometers and is divided into four districts: Hong Kong Island, Kowloon Peninsula, New Territories and 235 outlying islands.

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GMT + 8 hrs.

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General weather conditions

Hot and humid; occasional heavy tropical showers


Range: 26oC (78oF) to 31oC (88oF)


Around 81%

Recommended dress

Short sleeves and cotton or linen clothes are best.
A light sweater or jacket for indoor use is a must as restaurants tend to set their air-conditioning to very cold.
A hat for outdoor activities to protect against the sun is highly recommended.
An umbrella for the occasional shower is advisable.

Visit the Hong Kong Observatory website for the current weather forecast.

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Chinese and English are the official languages of Hong Kong. Over 95% of the residents speak Cantonese and Mandarin (Putonghua) is increasingly widespread. English is the common language in international business.

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The official currency is the Hong Kong Dollar (HK$) which is pegged to the US dollar at HK$7.8 to US$1.00.

Currency converter

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Banks are open Monday to Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. ATMs are located throughout the city.

Currency exchange is available at banks, at the airport and at exchange kiosks in the shopping areas. Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept major credit cards. U.S. dollar traveler's checks are easily cashed.

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Bills in restaurants and bars will normally have a 10% service charge added. If paying by credit card do not add any additional tip as, generally, this will not be given to the waiter/server. If paying by cash, it is customary to leave the small coins in the change as an additional tip. For taxis, one normally rounds the fare up to the nearest dollar; no other tipping is required for taxis.

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The electricity supply is 200/220 volts, 50 Hz. Three-rectangular pin plugs are the norm (i.e., plug type G at the Expat Forum web page). Foreign appliances may require an adapter.

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GSM, PCS, CDMA and TDMA networks are available in Hong Kong.

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Please check the specific visa requirements for your country at the Hong Kong Immigration Department web site.

Generally, visas are not required for visitors from most countries. The length of allowed visa-free stay in Hong Kong varies from 14 days to 3 months. All visitors to Hong Kong must have a valid travel document, endorsed where necessary for Hong Kong. These should be valid for at least one month beyond your planned departure from Hong Kong, and in the case of certain nationalities, at least six months. On request, a formal letter of invitation can be issued by the organizing secretariat.

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