Many of the millions of travellers who visit Hong Kong every year spare at least one day to visit neighboring Macau, where some of the world’s best casinos can be found, alongside rich Sino-Portuguese heritage, impressive historic cathedrals and fabulous food… The Hong Kong to Macau ferry is the main means of transport between HK and Macau, so understanding how it works and what are the different options, is the most important factor when planning your Macau day trip.
There are currently three major operators on the line between Hong Kong and Macau, namely TurboJET, New World First Ferry and Cotai Jet. Their ferries depart from two different ports in HK, as well as from Hong Kong Airport’s Sky pier, and arrive at two different ports in Macau, and the journey takes approximately one hour, no matter who you travel with.
The boarding procedures at any of the ferry terminals are ‘hassle free’, so unless there is a public holiday or festival, you will not have to show up more than an hour before departure, and can also buy the ticket at the terminal itself.
TurboJET(or Shun Tak-China Travel Ship Management, as they are officially called) departs from Shun Tak Centre in Central, which can be directly accessed from exit-D of Sheung Wan MTR Station. Their Flying Cat and JetFoil ferries leave in 15 minutes intervals, from 7am to midnight, but they also have seven departures during the night, in case you want to get to Macau early in the morning, or return to Hong Kong late at night. In Macau: They arrive at the main Macau Ferry Terminal.
The catamarans of New World First Ferry (or NWFF) depart every 30 minutes, between 7am and 10:30pm, from China Ferry Terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, which is located right next to Harbour City, and a short walk from either Nathan Road (across Kowloon Park) or Star Ferry Pier, on Tsim sha Tsui’s promenade (via Canton Road), and also arrive at the main Hong Kong-Macau Ferry Pier, in Macau.
Cotai Jet, the third company, operates a fleet of high-speed catamarans, which can carry up to 400 passengers. They depart mainly from Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal (Shun Tak Centre) in Central, although they also have three daily departures from Tsim sha Tsui’s China Ferry Terminal, and travels mainly to Taipa Temporary Ferry Terminal, in Macau, which makes them the preferable choice for those travellers who want to visit the glitzy casinos of Macau’s Cotai Strip. Another advantage Cotai Jet offers to casino visitors is a complimentary shuttle ride from the pier to Sands Macao, or The Venetian Macao-Resort-Hotel.
Those of you who travel with TurboJET or New World First Ferry to the main Macau Ferry Terminal can simply take a bus from the bus bay on the other side of the taxi stand, as you exit immigration. Many of the routes that depart from here travel to the city’s major sightseeing spots, like The Lisboa, Senado Square and A-ma Temple.