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Moving to HK with infant....advice?

  1. #9
    loupou is offline Baby Guru
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    Mar 2003
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    New Territories
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    Ibuprofen

    Ozmaofoz,

    Ibuprofen is available by prescription only in HK and I've never seen it prescribed for kids. The usual thing given to kids is paracetemol suspension. So, if you are really devoted to this baby motrin stuff, bring some along with you. If you use ibuprofen yourself, you might want to bring a jar.

    That said, I have bought it w/out a 'scrip at some dispensaries (I sometimes suffer from repetetive strain injury).

    Teething gel is available in the major chain drugstores and in smaller dispensaries.


    The standard vaccination schedule in HK is listed here.
    http://www.info.gov.hk/dh/publicat/web/immuni_e.htm
    They are free at all the Maternal Child Health Centres.
    http://www.info.gov.hk/dh/telephon/mchc_e.htm

    BCG is not a standard one in the USA, but the incidence of TB is still quite high in HK.

    Be aware that the most common "soy milk" drink, "Vitasoy" here has cow milk solids in it.

    Depending on where you end up living, most of your travel could be on MTR (subway), or double-decker bus, or minibus, or taxi. I never used a car seat w/ my kids except when we were in our own car.

    Helpers usually live-in and work 6 days a week.

    Good luck in your move.

  2. #10
    armstroe's Avatar
    armstroe is offline Registered User
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    We moved to HK 6 yrs ago when my daughter was 6 months old - here's what I brought from Oz that were a complete waste...

    @ Emmalunga pram - what was I thinking????? We were first living in midlevels and the pram took up the whole footpath. Plus there are stairs everywhere. I ended up buying a "combi" brand pram here (Japanese make). It's lightweight, folds up to carry over the shoulder and is easy to open and close with one hand. I used this until my daughter was at least 2.5yrs. I'm now using the same one 6 years later with my new baby

    Problem with prams bought locally is that they have lower handles. I'm 5' 11, so it's a bit of a pain pushing something quite low, but the convenience factor makes up for it

    @ One of those baby backpacks - honestly, kids just get too heavy to carry this way

    @ travel cot - I should have put her cot on the plane with us instead of getting her cot shipped. It was 6 weeks of hell when we first got here because she was in unfamiliar bedding, and she loathed the travel cot even though I introduced it to her in Oz

    You are lucky you are coming up now instead of 6 years ago, so much is available here that you won't need to bring up heaps of things. Plus the prices are more reasonable then they used to be. However if your baby is walking before you get up here, get his shoes before you move. They are so expensive here.

    My elder daughter has never been good with cow's milk but I've always been able to use the Vitasoy here - you can get the same one they export to Australia.

    Check out what medical insurance your partner's work is offering. There are some great doctors here, and I've actually found they have more time for you then any I saw in Sydney

  3. #11
    twinkle is offline Registered User
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    Aug 2003
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    Mid Levels HK
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    I came to HK when I was pregnant and I had almost everything I needed shipped here from home.

    At the time I wasd grateful, just because it eliminated the need to spend each weekend shopping. If I had to do it over again, I would bring the bare essentials:

    baby carrier
    small toiletry/bath kit to get you through the first few weeks
    emergency medicine and first aid kit
    Blankies and washcloths


    Almost everything can be bought here, and just in the last year I have seen so much improvement with the range of products available (thanks, in part, to "Bumps to Babes"). But I find some things soooo expensive here (like receiving blankets or good quality baby bedding). The one thing that I still get from home are Mylicon drops for gas. They are amazing and work instantly to calm a colicky baby.

  4. #12
    Slee is offline Registered User
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    Regarding goat's milk, I haven't seen fresh goat's milk, but a small store called Healthgate on Des Voeux Rd sells it in powder form and as long life milk. Most supermarkets have goat's cheeses, while Great (that's it's name!) sells goat's milk yogurt.

  5. #13
    ozmaofoz is offline Registered User
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    Houston, Tx
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    Fantastic! Thanks so much for all the advice and help!

    I will not be bringing the stroller. Just the hip hammock (which is just super handy) and the backpack. I'm sure I'll regret the backpack - I have images of baby and I hiking all around the trails in the mountains but truthfully we'll probably just spend our days hiding from the heat in the apartment. By the time we get to hiking, he'll be big enough to do his own hiking! Second thought - scratch the backpack.

    Thank you so much for the lead on goat's milk. My son won't take formula (predigested or soy based ones). That was a big question mark for me.

    I'm all stocked up on Baby Ibuprofen and Baby Symethicone. We're also starting him on the TB vaccine this next go round, and vaccinating with an Asian formula version flu shot. Thanks for all your handy advice. You ladies are saving me a lot of worry.

    I will be in Kowloon. What the heck does that mean? Anyone else in Kowloon?

    As for helpers , I found this very confusing (from an agency website)

    Is it Legal to hire a part-time maid?
    No. Although it is common practice to hire a part-time Helper, in fact this is illegal and can result in criminal conviction for both the Employer and Helper .

    What does this mean? Our apartment is small and not big enough for a live-in. I was hoping to just have someone come in twice a week to watch the baby and do the "deep cleaning". Is such a thing just totally not possible? I'm confused (big surprise!).

    Thank you again. I will be in HK a month sooner than I thought, and all your advice is saving me a lot of worry and aggravation.

  6. #14
    Slee is offline Registered User
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    Don't worry too much about simethi...(forgotten how to spell it). It is available in Hong Kong and is marketed as Infacol - thank God, as I don't know how we would have survived without it.

  7. #15
    pkh
    pkh is offline Registered User
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    It is illegal to hire part time maid only if it is a foreign domestic helper. Hong Kong has a large contingent of foreign domestic helpers, mainly from the Philippines, Indonesia or Thailand. They are on specific visas tied to particular employers. Therefore, hiring them part time is illegal. Many people do that though....

    However, you can hire local part time maids - that is not a problem. The Hong Kong government has trained a lot of part time domestic helpers recently, but they are more expensive then the foreign ones... that is why so many people are "illegally" hiring foreign part time maid.

    Kowloon - I am living in Kowloon - Tsim Sha Tsui. Hong Kong is made up of one big island (the Hong Kong Island), the Kowloon Peninsula and numerous small outlying islands. You will be closer to the everyday Hong Kong people if you live in Kowloon (pardon me you all Hong Kong Islanders). There are more expats on the HK Island.

  8. #16
    ozmaofoz is offline Registered User
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    Alright! Baby and I have our passports and our tickets. We'll be traveling from the States in mid Feb.

    I really appreciate all the suggestions and resources. Once I get to HK, I'll be looking up the YMCA playgroups and will join the HK La Leche League.

    We will not have a live-in because our apartment is already serviced by maids twice a week, and after living with my in-laws for a year I am really looking forward to some serious privacy with my husband *wink*. We only have one child and would like to save the money that a helper would cost, at least the first year. I wouldn't mind a mother's day out for the baby a couple days a week!

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