How to get to Macau from Hong Kong?

Macau is the neighbour of Hong Kong and it is only 60km southwest away.

There are several ways to get to Macau depending on your time, budget and preferences: with Ferry, by Helicopter or by plane.

A bridge connected Hong Kong and Macau is under construction and is expected to open around the beginning of 2018. It will provide not only one more option travelling between Hong Kong and Macau but also make the travelling much easier.

In this post we will only talk about the most popular way of travelling for the moment.

Turbojet at Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal

Turbojet at Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal

Taking a Ferry from Hong Kong to Macau

Taking a ferry to Macau is the most economical and convenient way. Taking a ferry is very easy and the ferry ride from Hong Kong to Macau will take only approx. 55 – 60 minutes. TurboJET and Cotai Water Jet are the two major ferry boat operators (the ferry service of the Hong Kong North West Express Limited (HKNWE) ceased its operation on September 10, 2012).

At present there are 4 different ferry terminals located throughout Hong Kong serving different routes from Hong Kong to Macau. The Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal and China Ferry Terminal are the most convenient ones. The Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal is located in Sheung Wan (Central) on Hong Kong Island while the China Ferry Terminal is located in Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) on the Kowloon side. Aside from these two ferry terminals, there is another ferry terminal located in Tuen Mun and the SkyPier at the Hong Kong International Airport.

Below you will an overview of the different ferry operators, their routes, frequencies and sailing times:

Macau Ferry Schedule and Timetable

Ferries From Hong Kong To Macau

Company

Routes

Sailing Time

Service Hours

TurboJet

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[Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal] – [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

55min

24 hours daily
(every 15 min)

[Hong Kong International Airport] – [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

50min

11:00am/1:15pm
5:00pm/10:00pm
(daily)

TurboJet (operated by First Ferry)

[China Ferry Terminal] –[Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

60min

7:30am-10:30pm daily
(every 30 min)

CotaiJet

[Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal] – [Macau Taipa Ferry Terminal]

60min

7:00am-11:30pm
(every 30 min)

[China Ferry Terminal] –[Macau Taipa Ferry Terminal]

60min

8:00am/9:00am/11:15am
12:15am/1:30pm/4:30pm

[Hong Kong International Airport] – [Macau Taipa Ferry Terminal]

60min

12:15pm/2:15pm/4:15pm
7:00pm/9:00pm (daily)

[Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal] – [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

60min

7:15am

[China Ferry Terminal] –[Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

60min

9:15am

[Hong Kong International Airport] – [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]

60min

Update 1: There were ferries from [Tuen Mun Ferry Terminal] – [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal] operated by the Hong Kong North West Express Limited (HKNWE). Unfortunately, this company has been closed since the 10th of September 2012. The route from Tuen Mun to Macau has been ended.

Update 2: TurboJET took over the ferry service between Tuen Mun and Macau from January 28th, 2016. Sailing time between Tuen Mun and Macau is roughly 40 minutes. However, at the moment there is a minimum of 14 round trips per week. In the future there might be additional sailings not only to Macau, but also to surrounding cities in the Pearl River Delta.

Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal

Maybe you already notice from the above table, although there are many choices of routes and companies from Hong Kong to Macau, the most convenient, frequent and longest service time is TurboJET starting from Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal. The Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal is close to most of the attractions of Macau. Unless your hotel is close to Taipa area, we recommend you to take the route from [Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal] to [Macau Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal]. Since the Turbojet ferries depart every 15 min, unless it’s special holidays, you don’t need to purchase the boat tickets in advance.

How to Get to Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal?

Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal is situated in Sheung Wan, Central. Take the MTR to Sheung Wan station and take exit D which will lead you to the Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Terminal in the Shun Tak Centre (you have to take several escalators up).

What is the difference between TurboJET and Cotai Water Jet?

Frankly speaking, aside from having different colors of the vessel (TurboJET has red ships and Cotai Water Jet blue ones), there are not many differences between the two ferry operators. Both ferry operators have similar travel classes, equipped vessels and will bring you to Macau in about the same time.

However, there are some differences in terms of sailing frequencies and location where you will embark in Macau.

If you are visiting Macau for the first time, we world recommend taking one of the TurboJET ferries. The frequency of sailings are higher (ferries run on 15mins intervals through the day and night), you have more options to catch a ferry from Hong Kong (as well as returning back from Macau) and arrive in Macau’s Outer Harbour which is the most convenient location. The Macau Maritime Ferry Terminal at the Macau’s Outer Harbour is the perfect starting location, no matter if you come to visit Macau for culture, sightseeing, foodie tours, historic sights, gambling in one of the casinos, visiting one of the many shows or the enjoy a weekend at the famous Macau Grand Prix. It is located at the heart of the city and close to most attractions, casinos and hotels.

The Cotai Water Jet ferries serve primarily the Taipa area. The Taipa Ferry Terminal is close to Cotai (hence the name of the ferry company) where all the major and popular casinos and hotels are located. In Cotai you will find the Venetian Hotel, The City of Dreams, Hard Rock Cafe Hotel as well as the just recently opened The Parisian Macao Hotel (with its version of the Eiffel Tower) and Studio City Hotel also known as the “Batman Casino” with its Batman Dark Knight inspired first 4D Dark Flight simulator. Taking one of the Cotai Water Jet ferries is prefect if you are planning a long weekend in one of the many hotels, love to gamble or would like to enjoy one of the many entertainment shows.

Turbojet Economy Class

Turbojet Economy Class

How much are the ferry tickets to Macau?

Let’s talk about prices. How much are ticket prices for the ferry from Hong Kong to Macau? Since the TurboJet fares are a little bit higher than the Cotai Water Jet ones, we provide an overview about the different travel classes and pricing structure in our table below:

Hong Kong to Macau

Macau to Hong Kong

Economy Class

Weekdays

HK$ 164

HK$ 153

Weekends & Holidays

HK$ 177

HK$ 166

Weekday, Weekends & Holidays (Night Service)

HK$ 200

HK$ 189

Super Class

Weekdays

HK$ 326

HK$ 315

Weekends & Holidays

HK$ 348

HK$ 337

Weekday, Weekends & Holidays (Night Service)

HK$ 369

HK$ 358

VIP Class

From HK$ 2151 to HK$ 2852

From HK$ 2107 to HK$ 2808

Where to buy the Ferry Tickets to Macau?

Ferry tickets to Macau from Hong Kong can be purchased at the customer service counters at the ferry terminals as well as online. However, if you want to skip long lines queuing for the tickets and also would like to enjoy some discounts we highly recommend reading through our advice on buying cheap ferry tickets to Macau in our next paragraph.

Where to buy cheap discounted Ferry Tickets to Macau?

Very often we get the question where to purchase discounted and cheap ferry tickets to Macau from Hong Kong. Both ferry operators have special promotions from time to time (Make sure to keep an eye on our travel news section to keep updated). However, these promotions are usually very specific, are only available during a short time or have certain restrictions (like a specific travel class) and black-out dates where these promotions are not eligible. For example: the Boarding Pass promotion where passengers from a certain airline are eligible for discounted ferry tickets or the Birthday Promotion where you enjoy some discounted ferry ticket on your birthday month.

Having said that, it is obvious that these special promotions are only applicable to a small portion of travellers to Macau. Especially, if you are travelling with family and kids or in a larger group you would like that everyone can enjoy some discounts as well. Time is money and if you don’t want to go through the hassle of all the fine prints figuring out if you are possibly eligible for a discount ticket, you might wonder if there is another way or chance to safe money for your upcoming Macau trip. Is there are place where you can buy ferry tickets to Macau on a sale year around? The answer is: Yes there is. Simply use the links below and you will get an instant saving on your ferry tickets to Macau. Since you get your ticket instantly, you can skip the long lines queuing to buy ferry tickets at the Macau customer service centres.

Turbojet Super Class

Turbojet Super Class

You might wonder what the difference of the Economy Class, Super Class and VIP Class is. Similar to the economy/business/first class concept on a flight you get a small business lounge and a snack on the trip. For the VIP Class you will get a separate room inside the ferry. Decide yourself if it worthwhile to pay the markup price for each trip. There are times where you find yourself paying for the higher priced tickets, especially if you are traveling on weekends or holidays this might be your only choice to get a seat on the ferries.

Snack on Turbojet Super Class

Snack on Turbojet Super Class

Take Helicopter

Furthermore, if you are really press for time and would like to pay the price, you can take the helicopter from Hong Kong to Macau. The traveling time is roughly 15-20 minutes, but expects to pay at least HK$ 4,300 (per person) for the one-way trip. If you are interested to make a once-of-a-lifetime impression by arrival, you might want to have look at Sky Shuttle Helicopter Ltd. Company in Hong Kong.

Macau Skyshuttle Heliport

Macau Skyshuttle Heliport

Visa Requirements and Immigration to Macau

Macau Arrival

Macau Arrival

Do you need a visa for Macau? The simple answer is yes. All visitors to Macau are required to have a visa. Make sure you take your travel documents and passport with you. However, similar to Hong Kong, many countries are exempted from a visa and can visit Macau without an entry permit or visa. Depending which passport and nationality you hold, visitors will be granted a tourist visa for 30-180 days (for more information on how long you are allowed to stay visa-free we highly recommend checking with your local embassy). If you are a resident of the EU,U.K, U.S. or Canada immigration will take you just a few minutes. Just make sure your passport will be valid 6 months after your planned departure date from Macau. If you are a Mainland Chinese citizen and if you already have a Hong Kong visa, you are allowed to enter Macau if you depart from Hong Kong.

In case you hold a passport from Bangladesh, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka or Vietnam you are required to apply for a valid Macau visa in advance through your Chinese embassy (for more information check http://www.fsm.gov.mo/psp/eng/AfMV.html).
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Macau Immigration Form

Macau Immigration Form

In the past, visitors had to fill out an arrival card and received a passport stamp. Macau authorities ended this practice in July 2013. Similar to Hong Kong, Macau immigration officers do not stamp visitor passports at the entry or exit point anymore streamlining the immigration process. Visitors with visa-exempt status as well as with visitor permits will receive a printed arrival card. This printed card must be retained throughout the stay.

Do you need to exchange money or the question which currency you should use in Macau – MOP or HKD?

Many people have been asking if it is necessary to exchange currencies. Macau is using the Macanese Patacas (MOP). However, if you are coming from Hong Kong and have enough Hong Kong Dollars there is no need to exchange money to the Macau Pataca. Most of the stores, taxis and restaurants will happily accept Hong Kong Dollars and will provide you change in Hong Kong Dollar as well. There are several reasons for that. One is that Macau is the perfect weekend get-away for Hong Kong people and therefore a huge inflow of tourists from Hong Kong. The other one is that the Macau Pataca is pegged to the Hong Kong Dollar with a rate somewhere around HK$ 1 = 1.03 MOP which makes it very easy to compare prices. Interestingly, many restaurants and business accept a third currency…the RMB.