Hong Kong was hit by a strong typhoon at 8:00pm GMT on Monday 23 July, resulting in a considerable number of cancelled and delayed flights to and from Hong Kong airport. Britons planning to holiday in Hong Kong in the coming days are strongly advised to check updates from their airline and monitor local advice from local authorities.
Hong Kong is an increasingly popular tourist destination and attracts thousands of British holidaymakers annually. In July 2011 over 3.8 million foreigners journeyed the area, which set the record for any location worldwide in a single month. However, travellers this July may face severe disruptions in terms of air travel, local public transport and ferry links connecting Hong Kong island to other neighbouring islands such as Kowloon and the New Territories. Moreover, between midnight on Monday 23 July and 08:00am local time 60 flights were cancelled, 60 delayed and 16 diverted, as announced by the Airport Authority.
Typhoon Vincente is the most serious typhoon to strike Hong Kong since 1999 and triggered a No 10 hurricane signal. According to reports wind speeds calmed from 88mph to 37mph within hours, and thus the alert level has now been lowered. Nonetheless, visitors and residents should take care of strong gales, flooding and flying debris.
Inner-city public transport links remain disrupted but are hoped to be resumed as soon as possible. British nationals already on holiday in Hong Kong can make use of the 24 temporary shelters that have been opened by the government, principally in subway stations.
Britons travelling to southern China may equally be affected; typhoon Vincente sweot into the province of Guandong soon after striking Hong Kong, causing nine flights to be cancelled at Zhuhai Airport on the evening of Monday 23 July as well as extensive interruptions to the local rail network. As result, we strongly recommend that all Britons journeying to the region remain vigilant of updates, official advice and warnings.
For more information see the Hong Kong Observatory website.
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