Hong Kong’s Ching Ming-Easter holiday rush has so far seen 42% more people leave the city than enter it. During the season, which began on April 1, 2.1 million people departed the city and 1.5 million travellers arrived in the SAR as of April 6, according to figures provided by the Immigration Department.

So far, the highest number of departures was recorded on April 4 (401,078), the eve of the Ching Ming Festival, while the greatest number of arrivals was logged on April 2 (308,813).

Hong Kong residents accounted for most of the departures during this six-day period (1.69 million). Most of them left for the Mainland via land and sea crossing points (1.4 million), with Lo Wu being the most favoured point of departure as 386,895 passengers crossed into the Mainland there.

April 1279,157414,309
April 2308,813330,008
April 3212,022284,459
April 4193,702401,078
April 5281,051386,943
April 6239,813340,477
The total number of people who arrived in and departed from Hong Kong using air, sea and land crossing points from April 1-6, 2023 (© Hong Kong Immigration Department)

Last week, the Immigration Department estimated that 9 million passengers would travel between Hong Kong and Mainland China between from April 1-10, and that 83.5% of them would use land crossing points. Authorities anticipated that Lo Wu would see the heaviest traffic, followed by the Lok Ma Chau Spur Line and the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge.

Hong Kong lifted several Covid-related travel restrictions earlier this year, by first resuming quarantine-free cross-border travel with the Mainland in January. The city then restarted key cross-border transportation services by reopening the Lo Wu MTR Station and resuming the Hong Kong section of the Express Rail Link. Authorities also ended pre-departure Covid-19 testing requirements for northbound and southbound travellers in February.

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Earlier this year, the SAR also scrapped several restrictions on international travel, most notably the vaccination requirements for tourists, as well as the pre-flight Covid-19 testing and health declaration for all Hong Kong-bound visitors. All social-distancing limitations, such as the caps on group gatherings and seating at F&B establishments, are no longer in force and the public health emergency regulations that governed them expired last month.

Header image credits: Kima Yueaum Howai via Wiki Commons

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From the Middle East to the Far East and a couple of places in between, Anjali has lived in no fewer than seven cities in Asia, and has travelled extensively in the region. She worked as a lifestyle journalist in India before coming to Hong Kong, where her favourite thing to do is island-hopping with her daughter. You can check out her musings on motherhood, courtesy her Instagram profile.

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