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Hong Kong

22 bytes added, 13:23, 18 September 2010
[[Image:LanKwaiFong_Night.JPG|thumb|240px|[[Hong Kong Island#Drink|Lan Kwai Fong]] at night]]
Traditionally, in much of China, people are more likely to drink tea, rather than alcoholic beverages. Many east Asian people are genetically predisposed to alcohol intolerance, a condition that often manifests itself as the so-called 'Asian flush'. Nevertheless, many Chinese people do drink but don't expect the binge-drinking culture found in some western countries. There are many neighbourhoods in Hong Kong without much in the way of a bar or pub.
Drinking alcohol with food is acceptable, but there is no expectation to order alcohol with your mealin any restaurant. A number of restaurants popular eateries do not sell alcohol.
If drinking alcohol is not your thing, then Hong Kong might be described as a teetotaler's paradise. Many eateries places offer a good range of non-alcoholic drinks, including extravagant mocktails that might seem more like a dessert. Such drinks are often consumed with a thick straw and may contain a variety of exotic sweet ingredients.
'''Lan Kwai Fong''' (Central), '''Wanchai''' and '''Knutsford Terrace''' (Kowloon) are the three main drinking areas where locals, expats and tourists mingle together. Here you will certainly find a party atmosphere, but don't expect the drunken brawls and rowdiness that you might be used to back home. If you come to Hong Kong , and get drunk , you will certainly risk drawing considerable attention to yourself if you cannot hold your drink.
The minimum age for drinking in a bar is 18 years. There is usually a requirement for young adults to prove their age, especially when going to a nightclub. The accepted ID in clubs is either your passport or a Hong Kong ID card. Photocopies are rarely accepted due to minors forging photocopiesusing fake documents.
Drinking out in Hong Kong can be expensive, especially if you choose imported drinks in fashionable western-style bars. However, away from the tourist trail, some Chinese restaurants may have a beer promotion aimed at meeting the needs of groups of diners. In cooked food centres, usually found at the wet markets, young women are often employed to promote a particular brand of beer. Convenience stores such as Circle-K, and supermarkets all sell a reasonable range of drinks. In Lan Kwai Fong, the 7-Eleven there is a very popular 'bar' for party-animals on a budget.
In a move to discourage smoking, tourists are only allowed to carry no more than 19 duty-free cigarettes or 25g of tobacco products since August 2010. The government has also banned the sales of tobacco products in duty-free shops on arrival gates.
Offenders can be charged for cigarette smuggling and the penalty can be tough. According to one local account, a man was fined $2000 after being found guilty of carrying five packs of cigarettes. Illegal duty-free cigarettes can be seen for sale in several locations, such as in night markets, but both the buyer and seller may be charged for smuggling. Be aware that the police are known to launch frequent raids at any time. Once caught, ignorance is not an accepted defence.
Cigarettes in Hong Kong cost around $30-60 for a pack of 20. Most popular brands include Marlboro, Salem and Kent which are sold at $39. There are also some cheaper brands catering for smokers on a budget. Hand-rolling tobacco is not common and is only available in specialty shops.

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