Personal Lending Solution

Although loan services are now accessible via many channels, obtaining a best-fit loan can still be a complex and time-consuming process. The easiest way to get started is to take a few moments to establish exactly how your loan will improve your cash flow and enrich your life. Below are some tips to help you choose the right plan.

 

Taking your fur buddy on vacation

Just to prepare well, it is possible!

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Summer vacation

Fun for the whole family

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Be a Master Chef!

How much to enrol in Le Cordon Bleu?

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Pet owners around the world are all too familiar with the puppy dog eyes – when they want a bite of your food or a belly rub. The worst is when you’re about to go on vacation and your fur buddy starts moping around, begging you to stay. You don’t want to bring her to a pet hotel and you wished that you could bring her with you. Just to prepare well, it is possible to travel with your fur buddy and enjoy some priceless moments.

Preparations begin 8 months before departure!

Each country requires different documents and procedures. For example, the entry requirements for pets are quite strict in Japan – you will need to prepare 8 months ahead of time and it can cost over $10,000.

What to prepare if taking your dog to Japan
Time Preparations Fees
6-8 months prior to departure  Your dog needs to be implanted with a microchip that is compliant with ISO standards and take rabies vaccination A few hundred dollars
6 months prior to departure  Take your dog for an antibody titer blood test and then send blood samples to a lab approved by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (MAFF) Several thousand dollars
3-6 months prior to departure  It’s time to book the air ticket! Your pet will be treated as live cargo and you will need to specify the type of dog as well as the size and weight of the container Cathay Pacific flights from Hong Kong to Japan costs approximately $94.16 per kilogram
2 months prior to departure You will need to make arrangements with a cargo shipping company for your pet’s return journey Between $7,000-$10,000
40 days prior to departure Submit pet Notification Form by email to the Japanese Animal Quarantine Authority (AQS) and apply for a Special Permit for returning your dog to Hong Kong from the HK Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) $432
10 days before departure Have a veterinarian give your dog a clinical inspection to confirm that she is free from mites and fleas.  Fill out health certificate form recommended by Japan (Form A & Form B) and get it signed by the veterinarian  and endorsed by AFCD Health check-up: a few hundreds to thousand
Endorsement Fee: $155

How to bring my fur buddy home safely?

According to Hong Kong Ordinances, all pets entering Hong Kong must be transported by air as manifested cargo. Upon arrival, you will be able to pick up your pet at the cargo terminal. In the case of Japan, you will need to make arrangements with Nippon Express or Seino for sending your pet back to Hong Kong. The cost to ship ranges from $7,000 to $10,000 and will vary depending on your dog’s breed, weight, container size, etc.

If you are planning to travel abroad with your dog but have budget concerns, you may consider HSBC’s Revolving Credit Facility to get access to cash anytime. There is no fixed repayment period and you can simply repay the minimum amount of 2% of the outstanding balance each month.  After each repayment, your credit limit will be restored automatically without the need to re-apply.

To find out more about personal loans, feel free to call us on 2748 8080, or apply online now.

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It is inevitable that everyone faces pressure and children are no exception. A family trip during summer holiday could be the perfect time to take a break. If you’re looking for holiday ideas that are both relaxing and educational, Australia is one of the perfect places for you to enjoy the natural scenery and learn about environmental protection with your children.

Popular destinations in Eastern Australia

Cairns, Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Sydney, and Melbourne are popular destinations located in Eastern Australia. These are great cities to visit but you’ll have to plan accordingly because the cities are quite far away from each other. You can rent a car but if time is of the essence, you should consider taking inland flights between cities. You can book round trip flights from Hong Kong to Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane, and from there, you can transfer to inland flights to travel to the Gold Coast or Cairns.

Visit the Great Barrier Reef  

Your kids can learn about marine life at the largest coral reef in the world. For a stress-free day, we would recommend booking a one-day tour package through the local travel agency or travel website.

Whale Watching

Whale watching is a must-do and is fun for the whole family. The best time for whale watching in Australia is from May to November, you can spot Dwarf Minke Whales swimming at the bottom of the Great Barrier Reef. Alternatively, you can take a boat ride out to see the humpback whales on the Gold Coast.

Wild Dolphins feeding

On Moreton Island, visitors can hand-feed wild dolphins that visit the shores each evening at sunset. It’s an incredible and unforgettable experience that is only a 70 minute ferry ride from Brisbane!

Witness the magic of penguin parade

Only 90 minutes away from Melbourne is Phillip island, where you can experience one of Australia’s most popular attractions.  Each night at sunset you’ll be amazed by little penguins returning to shore after a day’s fishing.  As the sun fades in the sky, the little penguins waddle up the beach to the safety of their homes in the sand dunes.  This experience is sure to be never forgotten.

Meet the Australian mascots

How can you go to Australia without paying a special visit to the koalas and kangaroos? If you’re in Brisbane already, you can visit the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary nearby to feed the kangaroos and hug the koalas up close. Not all zoos will allow visitors to hold the koalas in their arms, so make sure to check on this beforehand.

Average family travel budget for Australia

Assuming a family of four (two adults and two children) and a 10-day trip to Eastern Australia in August, the estimated budget is as follows:

Expense Amount
Hong Kong to Brisbane flight HK$14,000
Brisbane to Cairns flight HK$4,000
Cairns to Sydney flight HK$5,000
Sydney to Melbourne flight HK$3,500
Melbourne to Hong Kong flight HK$11,000
Great Barrier Reef – 1-day excursion HK$5,000
Moreton Island Wild Dolphin Feeding 1-day excursion (additional whale watching, watching marine life, or sandboarding– choose one) HK$4,100
LONE PINE KOALA SANCTUARY admission ticket
(hugging the koalas require a separate ticket purchased at the zoo )
HK$700
Philip Island Penguin Parade HK$3,500
Hervey Bay Whale Watching (half day excursion) HK$1,700
Accommodation HK$15,000
Meals HK$5,000
Car rental, parking, petrol, and transportation HK$5,500
Shopping and other consumption HK$6,000
Total HK$84,000

 

According to the estimate above, the cost for a family trip is close to HK$100,000. In case travel expenses are tight, HSBC’s Revolving Credit Facility may be an option that will allow you to get instant cash at any time. Interest is calculated daily based on the used amount only, so the interest usually turns out to be lower than other loans with interest calculated on a monthly basis.

To find out more about personal loans, feel free to call us on 2748 8080, or apply online now.

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To borrow or not to borrow? Borrow only if you can repay!

 

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With the rise in popularity of celebrity chefs like the well-known British chef Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsay from “Hell’s Kitchen”, the number of people getting in culinary schools is continuing to grow. Those who love cooking may not really want to be master chefs but still want to advance their culinary skills and prove themselves! Well, there are so many courses out there and the tuition fees can be tens of thousands. The highly popular Le Cordon Bleu courses even cost hundreds of thousands!

French Le Cordon Bleu short-term courses from one hundred thousand upwards

In recent years, French culinary school Le Cordon Bleu offered the most sought-after culinary courses, famous actresses like Teresa Mo, CoCo Chiang and Suki Chui having attended its courses. Le Cordon Bleu is the largest culinary school in the world, with courses taught by a number of Michelin-starred chefs. Besides France, it has campuses in Taiwan, Japan and Shanghai, etc. The most popular course is definitely Grand Diplôme which is recognised by the culinary industry around the globe. Graduates will have recognition no matter they start their own businesses or work in related fields.

In reality, “you get what you pay for”. As a world class culinary school, tuition fees are certainly not inexpensive. Le Cordon Bleu offers different kinds of courses, such as short-term, French cuisine, pastry etc. You can choose according to your interests and purposes so as to fulfil your dreams. For instance, a three-month pastry course will cost you €8,000 (approx. HK$74,380) and a three-month cuisine course at €11,000 (approx. HK$102,280).

Professional sommelier certification courses cost only forty thousand upward

Cuisines and fine wines are a perfect match. But how to make good food and wine pairings so as to bring surprises to your taste buds? This requires advanced knowledge. If you want to better understand wines or are interested in becoming a professional sommelier, enrolling in an internationally recognized training institution is the answer. For example, the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) from UK offers courses that are recognized by over 60 countries. Its courses are divided into four levels, including three foundation levels and one diploma level. Those who have passed examinations for all four levels will be awarded a professional sommelier qualification. Tuition fees for all courses cost around forty to fifty thousand, which is relatively affordable.

You may want to better equip yourself through continuous education but yet to have sufficient education fund. Why not consider HSBC’s Personal Instalment Loan to cover your expenses? It offers you a flexible repayment schedule with a maximum 60-month repayment period and no handling fee. In case you need more funds, simply withdraw the repaid loan any time without the need to re-apply!

To find out more about personal loans, feel free to call us on 2748 8080, or apply online now.

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Home renovation

Space-saving solutions for micro-living

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The devil is in the details

6 points to note before applying for a loan

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Which kind of personal loans best suits you?

A comparison of Tax Loan with Instalment Loan

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You may be frustrated by the serious housing problem in Hong Kong with more and more “nano flats” being existed over the past few years. Don’t be disheartened! With cutting-edge designs and out-of-the-box thinking, you can still craft your small unit into a comfortable and highly functional homes.

1. Get more storage space by a platform bed

A platform bed with closet space underneath can help use every inch of available space without impacting the overall outlook of your house design.

2. Open concept design

Walls are great for privacy but when you’re living in a tiny home, too many walls are a waste of space. Knocking down walls will help open up the room and give the perception that your unit is a lot bigger than it is. Just make sure that the wall you are tearing down is not the main wall and that your plan complies with fire regulations.

3. Make use of wall space and convert it into storage

If you don’t want to lose your privacy by removing a wall, you can consider using a built-in wardrobe to act as a separation between the living room and the bedroom.

4. Use transformable furniture

Transforming furniture is an ideal choice for space optimization, like desks that turn into beds and cabinets that extend into dining tables, has become increasingly popular for micro-living and is available at most major furniture chains. While the price is a bit more expensive than average, it is definitely worth to furnish a micro-apartment comfortably.

5. Embrace “Danshari”

Danshari is an ultimate decluttering discipline which is originated by a famous Japanese writer, Hideko Yamashita, means ditching materialism for the simple life. She promotes three ideograms – “refuse” to bring unnecessary possessions into your life, “throw away” existing clutter, and “separate” from a desire for material possessions. Only objects that are useful for you in that moment should be retained. Once you practice Danshari, you will find that keeping your home neat and clean is a simple task!

Even the smallest spaces can be turned into a comfortable home but it does come at a cost - decorating your home yourself will cost over $100,000 at a minimum, while bringing in a professional designer will cost you much more. Applying for a personal loan may be a good option to cover the expenses. HSBC’s Personal Instalment Loan offers you flexible repayment period. Additionally, there is no handling fee and allow you to redraw repaid principle anytime.

To find out more about personal loans, feel free to call us on 2748 8080, or apply online now.

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To borrow or not to borrow? Borrow only if you can repay!

 

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We are all familiar with loan promotion slogans like “Loan amount of up to HK$1,000,000 or 20 times your monthly salary!”, “Monthly flat rate as low as 0.1%!” and “Annualized Percentage Rate as low as 1.9%!” However, do you understand the implications of these slogans? Make sure you thoroughly understand before applying for a loan!

What is the maximum amount that could be borrowed?

The borrowing limit for each loan scheme varies. It could be over a million dollars or over ten times one’s monthly salary, but this doesn’t mean that we have to borrow up to the limit. You should consider your actual needs and ability to repay before applying for a loan. Borrowing more than needed incurs unnecessary interest payments. Even though you might be able to repay earlier, you would probably have to pay a penalty imposed by the lenders in order to compensate their loss of interest income. Therefore, the borrowing amount should be based on actual needs. Don’t just focus on a large loan amount and low interest rate.

How to calculate interests for instalment loans?

Suppose a customer borrows HK$100,000, with a monthly flat rate of 0.3% and a repayment period of 24 months:
Monthly interest: HK$100,000 x 0.3% = HK$300
Interest for the whole period: HK$300 x 24 months = HK$7,200

Assuming a 1% handling charge per annum is required:
Handling charge per annum: HK$100,000 x 1% = HK$1,000
Handling charge for the whole period: HK$1,000 x 2 = HK$2,000

Total repayment amount: HK$100,000 + HK$7,200 +HK$2,000=HK$109,200
Monthly repayment amount: HK$109,200 / 24 = HK$4,550

The simplified calculation above is for reference only. The actual calculation methods for individual financial institutions could be different.

Does a low monthly flat rate mean a good deal?

In determining whether a loan plan is good or not, many people think that a direct comparison of monthly flat rates is the answer. In fact, monthly flat rates is used to calculate the monthly interest expense only, other costs such as handling charges and annual fees are yet to include. Some loan schemes offered with interest /cash rebates which have not been counted as well.

What is Annualized Percentage Rate?

To compare the total costs of different loan schemes, borrowers should take a close look at the Annualized Percentage Rate (APR). For customers’ easy understanding, the Hong Kong Association of Banks requires all lending institutions to use the same method to calculate APR in accordance with the Code of Banking Practice, thereby showing loan interest and all other expenses, including handling fees, annual fees etc. Simply put, the lower the APR, the lower the borrowing cost!

How to get the most preferential rate?

Of course, borrowers wish to get the most preferential rate when applying for a loan. Other than requested loan amount and repayment period, financial institutions would also consider other factors such as applicant’s financial status, debt servicing record, personal credit score and occupation. For example, if the applicant is a doctor, lawyer, civil servant etc with good financial status and a good personal credit score, a more preferential rate would probably be offered. From time to time, banks would provide different kinds of special offers such as cash rebates and waivers of handling fees. Borrowers should shop around and carefully compare all promotional offer and don’t just focus on a low rate.

Could credit scores also affect loan approval?

The term “credit score” been often used in recent years. This score is calculated with reference to the borrowing and credit card usage status, repayment record, debt and even bankruptcy record of the applicant. Whether a repayment is on time or overdue will affect the credit score. Generally speaking, during the loan approval process, the higher the credit score of the applicant, the more preferential the interest rate. On the contrary, if the credit score is low, not only the interest rate but also the approved loan size would be affected. The loan application might even be declined in such a case.

Talk to HSBC if you have borrowing needs. HSBC’s Personal Instalment Loan offers a fixed repayment amount with a repayment period of up to 60 months. You can make your repayment plan according to what you can afford. If you want a flexible repayment, you may also consider HSBC’s Revolving Credit Facility. The approval time can be even shorter for applicants who have payroll accounts or proof of income records at HSBC.

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Everyone is unique, so do their needs? Borrowers should understand the features of different loan products to select the “right” one. What are the choices among personal loans? How to calculate the interest? Which kind is most suitable for you?

Choose the right loans to suit different purposes

If this is your first time borrowing or if you prefer stability, fixed loan is relatively simple and more suitable for you. Fixed loan provides a fixed repayment period and monthly repayment amount, so borrowers can reduce the risk of going over budget. The most common fixed loan schemes include instalment loans, tax loans, credit card cash instalment plans, etc. Their repayment periods, loan amount limits and fees are different so that different purposes and requirements are satisfied.

Instalment loans: The monthly repayment amount is fixed. The loan amount could be 12 times the monthly salary of the applicant with repayment period of 6 to 60 months in general. Instalment loan may be more suitable for big ticket size spend such as renovation, continuing education, wedding or medical expenses, etc. In case you need more cash flow thereafter, some banks even offer a “loan redraw” service. Borrowers can simply redraw the repaid loan any time with no need to apply for a new loan again, thus saving valuable time.

Tax loans: Tax loans are seasonal products that are launched in tax season every year offering a lower interest rate than other loan schemes, but with a shorter repayment period, ranging from 6 to 24 months. Although the main purpose of a tax loan is for paying tax, some banks do not have any limits on the loan purposes and do not require applicants to submit tax returns. Another feature is that some tax loans allow borrowers to withdraw loans in 2 phases according to the tax due, thereby saving lots of interest expenses.

Credit card cash instalment plans: This loan allows borrowers to withdraw cash directly from their credit card account with a fixed monthly repayment amount and repayment period from 12 to 60 months. The cash withdrawal may be less than other loan schemes comparatively, with a cap up to the available credit limit of the applicant’s credit card. If the applicant does not want to open and deal with extra loan accounts, the credit card cash instalment plan could be a suitable choice.

Is simply choosing the longest repayment period a good idea?

An instalment loan may offer repayment period up to 60-month and you might think that to start with the longest period is a good idea as you could simply make early repayment anytime when you have spare money, thus allowing you to save expenses on interest. This may be a lousy idea as most banks will charge an amount equal to a certain percentage of the loan amount or a specific amount as the early repayment penalty. In general, banks use the Rule of 78 to apportion the interest and principal repaid for each monthly repayment. Although repayment amounts in each month are the same, the proportions of interest would be higher and those of the principal repaid would be lower during the early period. In other words, after repaying on time for a certain period, the outstanding interest amount may be relatively little. Borrowers may not save money or even lose more if they choose to make early repayment. This is because the outstanding interest saved may not be enough to cover the penalty. Borrowers are advised to ask the banks about the related expenses for early repayment, including the amount of principal not yet repaid, penalty for early repayment and outstanding interest. Then, they could decide whether to repay early but only after careful comparison and consideration.

In fact, some banks provide a cooling-off period. HSBC’s Personal Instalment Loan offers a cooling-off period of 30 days. In case applicants decide to cancel the loan within 30 days after the loan is approved, all they have to pay is the interest based on the number of day borrowed but no penalty on early repayment. Therefore, applicants’ expenses are greatly reduced.

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To borrow or not to borrow? Borrow only if you can repay!

 

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Useful Links

If you need help, please call...

Personal Instalment Loan/Revolving Credit Facility: (852) 2748 8080
Cash Instalment Plan: (852) 2233 3051
Spending Instalment Plan: (852) 2233 3052

To borrow or not to borrow? Borrow only if you cay repay!