There are several ways to access Macau either by plane, helicopter, boat or car. Its close proximity to Hong Kong would account for its huge number of weekend visitors. For many years, the only way to Macau was to fly to Hong Kong and take a ferry to get across. But today, getting to Macau offers a variety of choices.
The Macau International Airport is situated in Taipa Island, which is about ten minutes away from the peninsula by use of the Macau-Taipa Bridge. There are about twenty airlines that have daily flights to and from Macau that connect to main cities such as those in Mainland China, Taiwan, Korean, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia and the Philippines.
There have been an increasing number of people that make use of the helicopter when getting to Macau by air. This reason is highly due to the no-nonsense approach of travelling by helicopter. Heli Express Limited and East Asia Airlines offer flights between Hong Kong to Macau to Shenzhen with each flight to the next at approximately 15 minutes each.
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Alternatively, getting to Macau by sea is still what the majority of visitors opt to make use of. With its frequent departures from the Hong Kong Island 24 hours a day, a scenic route and steady travel convenience, traveling to Macau by boat is the most cost-effective and most convenient of all the available options. The Turbo Jet and Cotai Jet offer trips from Sheung Wan, Hong Kong to Macau every 15 to 30 minutes during the day and at every hour at night. Taking a ferry boat from Kowloon at the China (HK) Ferry Terminal to get to Macau takes about 90 minutes which has less frequent trips compared to those stationed in the Hong Kong Island.
To make traveling to Macau easier for both Hong Kong and Macau residents as well as tourists, there are several services that provide a direct trip from the Hong Kong International Airport directly to the Skypier where the boats to Macau are docked. This way, visitors will be able to bypass the immigration and transfer directly to the dock.
There are two vehicular entry points when getting to Macau by land from China. One is at the Portas do Cerco, which is located at the extreme northern part of the Macau Peninsula that connects Gongbei to Zhulai. This entry point is open from 7 in the morning until 12 at midnight and is often regarded as a busy entry point. Another option to get to Macau by car is to use the Lotus Bridge, which links the Cotai Strip with the Wanzai district of Zhulai. This much quieter crossing requires driving over the bridge which is open from 9 in the morning to 8 in the evening.
It is important to know that a Macau visa is not needed with many passports mostly from Western countries. However, depending on your nationality, either a 30 or 90-day entry permit without charge is needed. It is also vital to know that Macau has a separate immigration regime from Mainland China which means that anyone getting to Macau is already deemed to leave China. A Chinese visa is then required to re-enter China from Macau.