Stewart McKay, Yau Ma Tei (Kowloon)

Who are you?

My name is Stewart, and I am an English teacher currently living in Hong Kong. I’m originally from the UK.

Where, when and why did you move abroad?

I moved to Hong Kong just over 3 years ago. I always intended to move abroad, to teach English, and a job came up here before anywhere else.

What challenges did you face during the move?The usual I guess – visas and shipping all my stuff out. I was lucky enough to have a flat sorted for me before I arrived. Hong Kong, though, is an easy place to move to. People are always coming and going from all over the world, and you don’t really have to jump through any hoops to sort everything out.

Are there many other expats in your area?

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I live in Yau Ma Tei, in Kowloon, out of the main expat areas on Hong Kong Island. There are a lot of local markets and shops selling woks, shrines and bamboo furniture. But I still see a few Western faces around. I’m only five or so MTR stops from the centre of town, and all the expat bars and restaurants, so it’s really the best of both worlds.

What do you like about life where you are?

Like I said, the area where I live is local enough to remind me that I’m in a foreign country. But, it’s very easy being an expat in Hong Kong. Too easy sometimes… Most people speak English, there are lots of western foods in the supermarkets… Sometimes the only thing that’s different from home is the weather.

What do you think of the food in your new country? What are your particular likes or dislikes?

It’s Chinese food! Dim sum, siu mai, pork buns, sweet and sour… Sometimes it can get a bit strange, with duck’s tongue or eggs that are black from soaking in tea for weeks, but on the whole it’s delicious.

What advice would you give to anyone following in your footsteps?

As tempting as it is, don’t just stick to the expat ghetto. Get out from time to time and live like a local. It’ll help you appreciate your adopted home in a different light. Easy as that.

Stewart shares before information about life in Hong Kong through his blog
What I Did In HongKong


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