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Hadley Says

What Happens if You Overstay Your Hong Kong Visa Limit of Stay?

January 22nd, 2013

Posted by / in Employment Visas, Family Visas, Hadley Says…, Investment Visas, Special Programmes, Visitor Visas / 19 responses


The Immigration Department are very strict about people who overstay their visa in Hong Kong.

If you are a visitor here and find yourself a day or 2 accidently overstaying, and have a good reason for this oversight, you may very well be able to sort it out at the airport as you depart.

However, you must appreciate that it is not recommended that you allow this to happen, nor that the Hong Kong ID will be happy with this sorry state of affairs.

In every other case, you must immediately report to Immigration Tower in Wanchai as soon as you realize that your current limit of stay has expired – visitor or resident alike.

The Hong Kong Immigration Department take the question of visa overstayers very seriously indeed – and long term overstayers could find themselves incarcerated for a period before being removed from Hong Kong – so under no circumstances should you allow an overstay to happen.

If you are a resident and have a genuine reason for slightly overstaying your visa (say because you’ve been in hospital) and there has been no-one around to help you sort your visa out, you can expect that the Department will be sympathetic and happy to help.

But everyone has a legal obligation to remain in Hong Kong subject to all their conditions of stay, including the limit or time imposed, and if you breach this, the consequences can be very serious indeed.

So please, take your visa expiry date as sacrosanct and plan your lives here around the immigration permissions you have been given – including the time allowed to stay.

More Stuff to Help You Along

The Visa Geeza on RTHK Radio 3 – July 2012

How a Hong Kong employment visa application can go completely wrong if you don’t know what you’re doing

Why do Hong Kong investment visas get denied?

Will he – or won’t he? Mike Tyson his criminal record and his Hong Kong visa

Will ImmD ever tell you why a Hong Kong visitor visa application has been refused?


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The Hong Kong Visa Geeza (a.k.a Stephen Barnes) is a co-founder of the Hong Kong Visa Centre and author of the Hong Kong Visa Handbook. A law graduate of the London School of Economics, Stephen has been practicing Hong Kong immigration since 1993 and is widely acknowledged as the leading authority on business immigration matters here for the last 24 years.

  • Gaze

    15 Nov 2017 am30 11:36am

    My friend had a case of overstayed and she was reported in Immigration on her case. She was detained for 7 weeks and now she’s back in Philippines after that. My question is how many years she can come back in HK to work again and if that case is her record for overstaying is cleared already?

    • The Visa Geeza

      17 Nov 2017 pm30 12:06pm

      It is unlikely she will be allowed to return. There is no minimum time away to clear an overstay record. If ImmD believe she will overstay again they will not admit her again.

  • Kar

    31 Oct 2017 pm31 1:32pm

    Hi! I had a one day overstay in Hong Kong. I have a Macau non-resident working visa. Can I still enter hongkong even just for a couple of days? Or if not, How many days should I refrain from entering Hong Kong? Is there any law? Thank you very much!

    • The Visa Geeza

      8 Nov 2017 am30 9:41am

      1 day overstay on one occasion should not be problematic – so long as it’s your only instance.

  • Jessie

    18 Jul 2017 am31 12:38am

    I have overstayed for two months and i reported already in immigration in Kowloon. My question is that if i still can come back in Hong Kong after. Because im about to leave in hong kong because i need to renew my passport. I got married here in hong kong last year on October, and my husband apply me as a dependent. And the immigration ask me to go back to my country, but im worried what if i cannot come back?
    Please answer my a question.. thank you

    • The Visa Geeza

      18 Jul 2017 pm31 1:57pm

      As a non permanent resident ImmD ALWAYS have the ability to deny your re-entry into Hong Kong. There’s not much more I can say than that really.

  • Julien

    18 May 2017 am31 11:47am


    I’ve an active hk working visa until may 2020 but I’m actually overseas and I don’t have a job in hk

    How long I can stay overseas before my working visa will be cancel ?

    Thanks for your help


    • The Visa Geeza

      18 May 2017 pm31 1:22pm

      Your employment visa will therefore expire in May 2020. But if you don’t work for your sponsoring employer you only have the privilege to reside in HK until then; you no longer have the privilege to work which ceased when you stopped working for your employing sponsor of record.


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