2021 Domestic Helper Salary Hong Kong (HK)
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2021 Domestic Helper Salary Hong Kong (HK)

Date Posted: 18/06/2021 Posted By: Steve

Foreign Domestic Workers Wages

Minimum wages for foreign domestic workers in Hong Kong are regulated by the Hong Kong government, which currently stands at HK$ 4,630 per month and is subject to annual adjustments. With the growing demand for increased wages due to the increasing cost of living, some employers have started offering higher salaries and other benefits to attract and retain their employees and prevent them from changing jobs. These benefits may include granting food allowances, end-of-year bonuses, additional vacation, extended annual leave, and additional home travel.

What is the minimum wage in Hong Kong for a domestic worker in 2021?

  • The Hong Kong government has set a MAW (minimum allowable wage) of HK$ 4,630 per month to be paid by an employer to the helper / domestic worker.
  • The standard employment contract also includes a residence allowance of HK$1,121 per month, which the employer must pay separately. If food allowance is not given, the employer must provide the employee with free food, which means the helper will cook the food with the employer's ingredients.
  • There is always free accommodation at the employer's home.
  • The domestic worker must also obtain a free ticket to return to the home country after the contract's expiration or termination.
  • The employer must cover the medical costs of the helper and take out insurance for the helper.

These laws show that the employer has to pay the helper and consider other compulsory expenses before hiring one.


Someone told me I might get away with paying less...

We don't recommend you try - not only is this mean spirited and unethical, but it can also get you into serious hot water. The maximum sentence for underpaying your domestic helper 3 years in one of Hong Kong's charming jails, but you can enjoy a HK$350k fine to amplify the pain of doing bird. We don't think you should consider this and don't be stingy!

Anyway - you know the old adage - "you pays peanuts, you gets monkeys£! Pay your helper handsomely, and she is likely to work happily in your home - everyone wins!


The importance of salary to the domestic worker - money isn't everything

Those who intend to hire domestic workers in Hong Kong should consider that the helper is leaving their family and country to work for them in a foreign country. It is essential to recognize the service provided by the helper. The helper sends part of the salary home to assist their family and spends some living in Hong Kong. Living in Hong Kong sometimes costs more than half the helper's salary, with the helper saving several hundred dollars in savings. Even after working so hard, the helper's financial situation usually does not improve. The helper arrives in Hong Kong hoping that the salary will help improve their family's standard of living. However, the reality of the cost of living in HK is growing at an accelerating rate. The employer's minimum wage to the employee is not sufficient to cover the daily expenses of the employee's family. The pay is the first thing a helper looks for when offered a job. The salary must be profitable enough for the helper to consider moving from one country to another.


Food and Salary Allowance - we often recommend that you offer both!

For contracts signed on September 28, 2019, or after that, the minimum wage for a domestic helper is HK$ 4,630 per month. Also, as stated above, domestic workers are entitled to a maintenance allowance of HK$ 1,121 monthly, or the employer must provide food.

Contracts signed on or before September 27, 2019, with a previous minimum wage of HK$ 4,520 per month and a food allowance of at least $1,075 per month, will be processed by the Department of Immigration provided the domestic worker arrives on or before October 25.

This is the minimum wage for a domestic worker, and employers must pay at least this amount. However, homeowners may find it necessary to pay higher wages to hire and retain a more experienced domestic worker.


When to pay food and salary allowance to a domestic worker?

Domestic workers must receive a monthly payment within seven days of the end of the payment period. If you are paying a maintenance allowance, we recommend paying it at the beginning of the month.

Note: Payment by bank transfer is highly recommended. Both the employer and the domestic worker will have a payment history. However, many domestic workers do not have a bank account and/or may prefer to be paid in cash. In this case, you must sign a payment slip every month and keep a copy.

The advantages of offering a good salary are formidable.

It can be challenging for families living in Hong Kong to find a domestic helper to help with household chores. The availability of helpers is gradually decreasing due to the unattractive wages offered by employers. The best remedy is that employers should attract better workers by paying better wages. The salary level should be such that the helper can send money home and save money for daily expenses. There are numerous advantages that an employer can enjoy by offering an excellent salary to the employee. The most important benefit is that a good wage allows the domestic helper to continue working for a long time and help their family back home. The family that hires the worker will benefit from the service and help of the helper. Suppose the helper's salary is profitable and commensurate with the helper's skills and qualifications. In that case, they will be driven to perform better and work harder. It is possible to establish a harmonious relationship between the helper and the employer based on mutual benefit. It is always better to have the best interest of your worker(s) at heart. It also increases the level of trust between you (the employer) and your helper (the employee).

Treating your domestic helper(s) with respect and recognizing their efforts can go a long way in creating a good working environment for the helper, increasing their productivity. Therefore, an issue as necessary as the maid or housekeeper's salary should be carefully considered before hiring a helper.

To find a helper who will be happy with a salary that suits your family, contact our team via WhatsApp on 65079170 - we are always happy to help. 

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