Travel news and advice

Hong Kong’s BN(O) passport holders entitled to same consular services as other British nationals

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 07 August, 2018, 5:20pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 07 August, 2018, 5:20pm

I am writing in response to your article on BN(O) passports, published on August 1 (“What is a British National (Overseas) passport and what is a holder entitled to?”).

The article stated that “ … there have been cases when the British Consulate has stepped in to help BN(O) holders outside Hong Kong”. This wording risks leaving a misleading impression with the reader. In fact, BN(O) passport holders outside Hong Kong are entitled to, and routinely receive, the same levels of help from UK diplomatic posts overseas as other British nationals. Our teams provide assistance to BN(O) passport holders overseas who have been victims of crime, hospitalised, arrested or detained.

For example, the British Consulate General’s consular team in Hong Kong is currently working with 13 other British missions around the world to provide consular services to more than 50 BN(O)s held in prison abroad. This entails helping the transfer of money; facilitating communications between the arrested person and family and friends; and making annual visits to prisoners in the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia and Thailand.

Your readers may also be interested to know that the British Consulate General also provides emergency travel documents and notarial services for BN(O) passport holders in Hong Kong.

For more details on what consular assistance entails and who we can help, please see Support for British Nationals Abroad: A Guide. This guide can be found on

Andrew Heyn, British Consul-General