Operators of ten ferry routes in Hong Kong are applying to raise their fares, with the biggest proposed increase – for the journey between Central and Lamma Island – being double the current fee.

pier 7 makeover
Pier 7 at Central Star Ferry Terminal. Photo: Wikicommons.

The Transport Department revealed in a Legislative Council document on Wednesday that it was handling applications for increases for 10 ferry routes.

Among them, operators of the routes between Central and Peng Chau, Central and Yung Shue Wan and Central and Sok Kwu Wan routes have applied for a 100 per cent increase.

Operators of the Central to Cheung Chau and Central to Mui Wo routes are seeking a 45 per cent hike, while a 28.6 percent rise is sought for the routes connecting North Point, Kwun Tong and Kai Tak.

Yung Shue Wan ferry pier lamma
Yung Shue Wan ferry pier. File photo: Tom Grundy/HKFP.

The Transport Department said it would handle the applications in a “prudent manner… taking into account the operators’ financial situation and prospects, public acceptability and affordability.”

The adult fare for a ride between Central and Yung Shue Wan is currently HK$25.90 on Sundays and public holidays, and HK$18.60 on Mondays to Sundays.

Hong Kong and Kowloon Ferry, which operates the Peng Chau, Yung Shue Wan and Sok Kwu Wan routes, last raised fares in 2021, local media reported.

Star Ferry
Star Ferry. Photo: Kyle Lam/HKFP.

The revelation comes ahead of fees for the Star Ferry increasing later this month. The Hong Kong icon will raise fares by more than 50 per cent for journeys connecting Tsim Sha Tsui with Central and Wan Chai, meaning rides will cost HK$5 for an adult on weekdays and HK$6.50 on weekends and public holidays.

The Star Ferry has struggled with declining customers in recent years due to a lack of tourists during Covid-19.

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Hillary has an interest in social issues and politics. Previously, she reported on Asia broadly - including on Hong Kong's 2019 protests - for TIME Magazine and covered local news at Coconuts Hong Kong.