Newly eligible Hongkongers will receive consumption vouchers worth HK$5,000 or HK$2,500, depending on their resident status, from July this year. Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Financial Secretary Paul Chan said that new registrants for the scheme can claim their vouchers in two instalments: the first on July 16, and the second on October 16.
In addition, Hong Kong residents who already received their first consumption voucher payment for 2023 on April 16 will start getting their second instalments on July 16. Permanent residents and new Mainland arrivals will receive HK$2,000, while non-permanent residents and students will get HK$1,000.
What criteria should a new consumption voucher registrant meet?
According to Principal Assistant Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury (Treasury), Ricky Chong, the government will consider the following people new registrants for the second phase of the 2023 consumption voucher scheme:
- Hongkongers who have just turned 18 years old
- New Hong Kong permanent residents
- New arrivals from Mainland China
- People who have come to study in Hong Kong or live in the city via various admission schemes
Hongkongers under the age of 65 who have requested to withdraw their mandatory provident fund, or who have been away from the city for at least 36 months will not qualify for the scheme unless they provide documentary evidence to prove they have not left the city permanently.
How can new registrants sign up for the consumption voucher scheme?
Registrations for Hongkongers who have recently qualified for this year’s consumption voucher scheme will be open from June 5-27. They may sign up for the scheme online or at any of the nine service centres that will be open during this time.
They must then choose how they want to receive their vouchers, and can choose e-wallets from AliPayHK, BoC Pay, PayMe, Tap&Go, and WeChat Pay HK, or their Octopus cards.
When will newly eligible recipients get their vouchers?
Payment timelines will differ for new registrants, depending on how they choose to receive their vouchers.
- E-wallets: New Hong Kong permanent residents and arrivals from Mainland China will get HK$3,000 on July 16, and the remaining HK$2,000 on October 16. Non-permanent residents will receive their first payment of HK$1,500 on July 16, and the remaining HK$1,000 on October 16. The vouchers are valid until February 29, 2024.
- Octopus cards: New registrants will get the first payment of HK$3,000 or HK$2,000, depending on their resident status on July 16. They will get the remaining HK$2,000 or HK$1,000, starting October 16, only if they finish spending their first instalment. If not, they will get the second payment on the 16th of the following months, until February 16, 2024. The last date to collect the vouchers on Octopus cards is June 30, 2024.
When will current registrants get their second payments?
Hongkongers who have already received their first consumption voucher payments on April 16 this year will receive their second payments on the same platform. However, if they wish to change their e-wallets or registration details, they should do so from June 5-27.
Chan announced this year’s consumption voucher scheme as part of the 2023-2024 budget as a measure to boost the local economy. The Financial Secretary also said that he hoped Hong Kong residents would use the vouchers to spend at the various Happy Hong Kong events the government has organised to give people who live in the city and tourists the chance to experience new recreational events and activities.
Header image credits: Frenciss Lips via Wikimedia Commons