Hong Kong Identity Card For Foreigners

Hong Kong Identity Card For Foreigners

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Whether you plan to stay in Hong Kong for the short or long term will depend on which category you are registered into, and everyone needs to have a Hong Kong smart identity card, also known as HKID. Hong Kong is the most popular choice among foreign investors. Hence, making the procedures simple and user-friendly is very necessary to attract these investors.

Continue reading to find out about HKID and discover its advantages, and why the need of Hong Kong identity card for foreigners.

What is Hong Kong Identity Card For Foreigners?

A foreigner who enters Hong Kong through the proper channels will be allowed to live in the area for up to 180 days. Nevertheless, a person would still need to apply for a Hong Kong identity card for foreigners to be a legally non-permanent resident.

Foreigners willing to live in the Hong Kong jurisdiction is required to apply for a Hong Kong smart Identity card. This smart Identity card is a document that has a micro-chip and besides being a form of identification, there are many other public services.

HKID card size is a credit-card-shaped and incorporate the microchip that has the immigration-related data including the thumbprint and the personal information. This automation enables foreigners to clear immigration and customs formalities using the automated fingerprint kiosks. At the same time, it is also possible to program the smart identity card to serve various other purposes unrelated to immigration, such as a library card.

The Hong Kong laws are very strict as everyone should carry their smart identity cards with them at all times! However, keep in mind that this document is not a substitute for other important documents such as travel documents from your home country.

The Hong Kong Identity Card Evolution

Smart identity cards were adopted as a way of identification in Hong Kong back in 2012. Nevertheless, it has been the undergoing territory-wide identity card replacement exercise for replacing the old cards to the new smart cards that have the enhanced security features, long durability and the chip technology integrated on personal information and data.

Who is Eligible to Apply HKID?

According to the Registration of Persons Ordinance, all individual aged 11 or above in Hong Kong has to apply for a smart identity card.

The Hong Kong people are granted the right to stay in their country when they apply for an identity card.

If that person has a family, and any of their family members are older than 11 years, they will also have to apply for their smart identity cards. The children below the age of 11 do not require an HKID.

All new arrivals should apply for a Hong Kong Identity card within 30 days of their arrival.

How to get Hong Kong Identity Card For Foreigners?

The first step towards acquiring a smart identity card is for applicants to submit the necessary documents and fill out the application forms in the Registration of Persons Offices.

One way to avoid long queues is to make prior appointments with the Hong Kong Immigration Department. Up to 4 applicants are allowed to sign up for each available appointment.

There is an appointment scheduling period in the offices of the Registration of Persons which is from 24 days. Hence, there is a recommendation for applicants to make appointment bookings before they come to the office. There is an option to book a slot online and visit the Office of the Registration of Persons under the Immigration Department of Hong Kong.

When you go for the registration day bring with you all your valid travel documents and a copy of your visa. This will show that you lawfully commenced residing here and that you are a legitimate resident.

Applicants between 11 and 17 years must have a valid birth certificate as well.
Before you start this, you may need to pick up application forms from the office or download the application form for the HKID card from the Internet. The other option is to complete the application form on-site at the office. Nevertheless, please be sure that you have the necessary documents of all applicants before you do so!

Benefits of HKID Cards

Hong Kong Identity card holders can benefit from these advantages and also have to be aware of their obligations: 

  • The first and most appealing reason for this card is that it gives identification. Hence, foreigners who live in Hong Kong on a non-permanent visa must carry this smart ID card at all times.
  • Hong Kong ID cards are secure. Data and information from the cards along with multiple layers of the same are embedded in the chip of that card to cut it short from possibilities of counterfeit or wrong use due to theft of cards or loss of the same as well.
  • The card also offers tremendous convenience because it can be used for different non-immigration processes.
  • All the government electronic services are delivered through the card. The secure identity card is the foundation of the system.
  • The thumbprint templates, which are embedded in the microchip on the identity card, allow cardholders to avail faster immigration clearance through e-channels of the Automated Passengers Clearance System and the Automated Vehicle Clearance System respectively.
  • Hong Kong Identity Cards give them a fast-track lane when clearing customs at airports.
  • Having a smart identity card gives the owners of the cards access to bank accounts.
  • The Hong Kong Identity card is certainly a helpful tool when seeking a job.

Process and Durations

The Hong Kong ID card that is issued to non-persons of permanent residency gives them the permission to live in the territory for a particular time.

Permanent residents do not enjoy the privileges citizens reserve for themselves. Such rights include the right to vote, the right to travel outside the country and the right to other things.

After ten working days we assure you that the smart identity card will be ready excluding the weekend and holiday.

The applicant should also make sure that the application deadline is detailed on the acknowledgment of application submission.

Additional Tips

  • As you ensure the safety of your smart identity card, make the right choice for its storage by using an appropriate holder.
  • Do not bend the card or use a magnet to check. Besides, do not pair the card with keys and coins, either.
  • In case you lose your card or it is damaged, book a Registration of Persons Office and seek an identity card replacement within 14 days.
  • A smart ID card replacement will be a HK$370 fee applied.

How FastLane Group Can Help?

We hope the details explained in this guide help you to process your HKID card. Please keep in mind that if you are going to live the whole time in Hong Kong, the best policy is to honor the local laws, and registering to get this smart identity card is one single option. 

If you need to apply for your Hong Kong Identity Card for Foreigners, a professional service, FastLane group can assist you step-by-step process. We also offer corporate services like a company secretary, accounting, and audit. With the depth of knowledge of our team, we can help your company meet al requirements and guarantee that the procedure is efficient, timely, and complete with all necessary documentation. 

Get in touch with us right now to find out more about how we can support your success!