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Buying models
Living in the UK and buying from Hong Kong
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Firstly, I would like to welcome you to the world's leading website for news, information and photographs of the model buses from Hong Kong, China, Singapore & Japan. 
I do hope you find this site both useful and enjoyable and to help in both these respects, I would suggest you take a moment or two just to read through this section along with the Site navigation section immediately below.

One important point I would like to make is that I do not sell or buy models - the site is solely for information.

Corgi and Exclusive First Editions (EFE), both UK based companies, issued their first Hong Kong liveried models in the mid 1990's, albeit the accuracy of their castings was a little dubious, both basically using existing castings of UK buses - their scales varied between 1/76 and 1/64.

In 1997 Corgi launched their new tri-axle Leyland/Volvo Olympian casting and the release of various colourful liveries soon followed, with a keen interest being shown by many model bus collectors both here in the UK and in Hong Kong, where many of the models were initially released, being commissioned by the Hong Kong bus operators themselves. It was in 1998 that I became interested in these models and the creation of this website followed later that year.

With the level of interest being shown by collectors, several new model bus manufacturers emerged in 1999, these being Hong Kong based companies with quantities of many of their models being made available in the UK. The year 2000 saw seventy-four models released in Hong Kong, many in all-over advertising liveries, as standard liveried models were not always licensed by the bus operator. The  market settled down and by 2004, both Corgi and EFE had withdrawn from the Hong Kong market, leaving just the Hong Kong based companies. During 2008, only seventeen models were released. By 2013, the number of new releases had increased to seventy-one, and during 2016, no less than one-hundred and fifty-two models were released! This trend has continued with 2019 seeing the same number of releases as 2016. The Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 saw the number of new releases drop to one-hundred and eighteen.

Back to the website, and in particular to the main section of the site, Diecast Models - each model released is generally included in three main listings as detailed below. Each listing basically contains the same information, but in a different order: -  

Model Manufacturer these pages list each model produced by the model number allocated by the manufacturer - where the bus operator allocates its own model number, this in shown in brackets below the manufacturer's number
Bus Operator these pages list each model in date released order - where the bus operator has allocated its own number, this is shown first with the manufacturer's model number being shown in brackets below
Vehicle Type these pages list the various variants of each vehicle type and is generally in date released order
Approximately two-hundred models were generally available in the UK in the early years, out of a total of just over one-thousand five-hundred models issued to-date (December 2020). Any quantities available in the UK are indicated in these listings in brackets along with the release dates, which are also shown also in brackets, where known.

The Notes section at the foot of each page, where applicable, provides general information.

Site navigation

This site comprises of various sections, all of which are fairly obvious by their title, links to which appear at the top and bottom of most pages:-
[diecast models] - [information] - [links] - [news] - [plastic models] - [resin models] - [trams] - [xtra]

[diecast models] - covers all diecast model buses and service vehicles - many of the earlier models were issued in the UK as well as Hong Kong, but more recently, the models are only issued in Hong Kong - the background colour of these pages is cream

[home] - this page has now been removed and replaced with the current News page

[information] - a guide to the site and its various sections, an explanation on how to navigate the site, its background, acknowledgements and contributions and the legal bit

[links] - simple enough, a page of links to other related websites and photo galleries

[news] - now combined with the Home page, this will take you to the current month's News - a separate News page exists for each month - it also features both a 'Search the Site' and 'Site Map' facility

[plastic models] - covers all plastic model buses - the background colour of these pages is pink

[resin models] - covers all resin model buses and service vehicles, most of which are only issued in Hong Kong - the background colour of these pages is pale green

[trams] - covers all model trams - the background colour of these pages is pale blue

[xtra] - covers topical items on the real bus scene plus a look at other models, books and souvenirs

As mentioned above, clicking on the [news] link at the top or bottom of a page will take you to the current month's News. To access the previous month's News, click the left-facing spinning arrow. To access the next month's News, click the right-facing spinning arrow. There is also a facility to view a specific month's News.

Also mentioned above, the [diecast models], [plastic models], [resin models] and [trams] pages use different colour page backgrounds and are divided into several categories, listing by Operator, Vehicle type, etc. Once you have reached the required Model page, clicking the left-spinning arrow will take you to the previous model in the same vehicle type, clicking the right-spinning arrow will take you to the next model of the same vehicle type, or the next vehicle type.

To recap.........

A click of a left-facing spinning arrow will take you to either:-

the previous model of the same vehicle type or that vehicle's summary page
the previous book
the previous month's News

A click of a right-facing spinning arrow will take you to either:-

the next model of the same vehicle type or the summary page of the next vehicle type
the next book
the next month's News
Clicking on the   button will always take you to the top of that particular page.


I would like to thank the following for their kind co-operation in providing news, reviews, photographs and information :-

ABC Models, Bus Fan World, Philip Chan, Citybus, the late Don Craggs, Stuart Dobie, Mr Kwok of 80M Bus Model Shop, Gakei, Edward Hong, Jacky Ho, Gareth Jones, Joe Kwong of Jotus.com, Grant Ng Kwok Kuen, Jacky Lau, Dennis Law, Lee Tin Yau, Bobby Liu, Donald MacRae, New World First Bus, Ray Ng, the late Peter Owens, Andrew Shirley, Terry Stapley, Chelton Tsze, Alan Wong and Keith Wood.

Visitor's own Model Reviews are always most welcome, as is any other information or photographs of the models or the prototype vehicles.

Site background.

This site is designed using basic HTML, the aim being to keep it simple, thus enabling pages to be loaded quickly.  It is best viewed at 1024 x 768, true colour or above. With IE4 or above, ensure that your text size on the 'View' menu bar is set to medium.

The site went live on 5th November 1998, the counter being added on 28th December 1998.

In October 2006, owing to mounting problems with my Internet Service Provider, Orange, I purchased webspace from a web hosting company and the site was moved to www.orientalmodelbuses.co.uk.

The site celebrated its 10th anniversary in November 2008 - on 31st March 2017 the site closed for six months for personal reasons, but it was re-launched in early October that same year - the site celebrated its 20th anniversary in November 2018.

The site celebrated its 25th anniversary in November 2023.

The site was created and is maintained solely by me in my spare time, and is NOT my full time occupation!!   I do not sell models, and it is not run for financial gain, but as an aid to fellow collectors in providing the latest news, information and photographs.

Site statistics

418 hits were recorded for the month of January 1999 - the 100,000th hit was recorded on 28th August 2000, with August 2000 also being the first month since the site was set up to receive in excess of 10,000 hits. The 200,000th hit was received on 24 June 2001.

June 2013 saw the highest number of visits for the 'Home' page at 28,084.
June 2013 saw the highest number of visits for the 'News' page at 42,861. 
3rd November 2010 saw the highest number of visits in a day for the 'News' page at 2,746.

Comprehensive statistics can be viewed by clicking on the eXTReMe Tracker icon at the foot of the current News page. The table below give an overview. 

Home/Current News Page
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total
2023 19,443 15,308 18,285 19,678 20,367 20,125 21,928 19,679 16,097 18,719 19,249 20,658 229,536
2022 29,267 23,560 21,943 21,707 20,970 20,190 21,239 20,603 19,027 20,771 19,054 18,661 256,992
2021 22,949 21,713 25,621 26,912 28,369 27,643 28,523 27,136 23,818 27,736 25,220 26,778 312,418
2020 19,989 17,734 18.329 20.267 20.906 21,881 24,135 24,960 23,111 22,068 19,868 21,729 254,977
2019 17,812 16,373 17,778 18,421 19,533 18,251 18,319 17,853 17,662 17,487 19,116 19,891 218,496
2018 17,280 14,721 14,459 16,100 17,174 16,014 16,517 16,367 13,390 15,949 15,709 16,078 189.758
2017 31,680 25,709 23,246 6,000 the site was off-line during this period 7,644 11,585 15,033 120,897
2016 32,537 30,404 32,499 28,789 27,992 29,222 30.202 30,671 29,139 25,758 25,505 30,408 353,126
2015 32,450 31,651 34,224 33,079 35,627 32,510 36,022 33,327 30,704 33,839 30,075 33,665 397,173
2014 39,179 31,769 36,999 32,238 35,984 38,014 35,034 31,469 32,504 34,348 23,450 32,027 403,010
2013 36,670 30,629 35,419 34,091 42,222 42,861 39,813 33,103 35,127 33,762 36,659 39,885 440,212
2012 32,453 26,220 30,827 28,981 39,300 36,897 34,781 30,082 29,990 30,157 29,938 32,205 381,831
2011 30,390 26,472 30,550 27,012 33,085 29,141 31,143 29,198 30,183 29,410 22,608 30,767 349,959
2010 27,932 26,791 27,282 23,306 27,236 26,902 29,725 25,085 26,905 25,817 27,720 26,177 320,878
2009 24,565 17,651 23,886 24,442 27,314 28,339 28,766 27,182 23,284 25,027 22,066 25,457 297,979
2008 20,559 17,412 18,720 18,067 17,733 19,595 19,365 17,620 20,722 22,560 23,034 22,789 238,176
2007 17,337 16,663 16,661 14,587 17,119 21,085 20,087 21,081 18,144 20,147 17,730 18,660 219,301
2006 27,359 22,322 24,299 26,166 25,147 23,404 21,984 22,295 24,140 25,056 19,459 17,681 279,312
2005 14,802 12,712 13,416 13,910 14,712 14,777 16,523 19,007 17,802 20,257 25,203 23,106 206,227
2004 15,621 12,046 14,212 14,384 14,733 11,953 12,608 15,842 13,419 12,483 13,657 14,984 165,942
2003 15,705 10,326 12,912 10,542 11,452 14,045 14,876 13,995 13,425 12,114 13,826 14,359 157,577
2002 11,167 8,460 6,991 7,781 9,384 9,260 11,256 10,753 11,444 13,720 11,767 11,771 123,754
2001 - - - - - - - - - - - 11,428 11,428

Contributions to the Site

I welcome any news, information and photographs relating to the contents of the site. Generally, the maximum size photograph I use on the site is 2048 x 1400, with a file size of about 400kb. The copyright of all photographs submitted should rest with the sender and they should not be taken or copied from any other source. Photographs will be acknowledged and if requested, a copyright watermark applied.

Buying models

The availability of models can depend on who commissions the model, who produces it and obviously how many are made. Corgi really started the interest in Hong Kong buses when it issued its three-axle Leyland Olympians in 1997 for the various Hong Kong Bus operators, to celebrate the Handover of Hong Kong to China. Many of these were produced in large numbers, generally over 10,000, and whilst being initially difficult to get hold of here in the UK, the operators had agreements with Corgi which has seen most of stocks of unsold models being returned to Corgi, and appearing at considerably reduced prices several years, or sometimes months, later. Collector's Model releases were generally available at 'normal' prices both in Hong Kong and here in the UK. EFE has issued a handful of Hong Kong models, most of which had been released previously in Hong Kong by other manufacturers, MBE, Drumwell, etc. The number of model manufacturers has decreased over the years and now the majority of KMB models are issued by 80M Bus Model. Model 1 is the other main model manufacturer, generally releasing New World First Bus and Citybus models. Resin models increased in popularity during the early 2000's, when there wasn't the range of diecast models, but the number of new releases has decreased considerably of late.  

There are several bus model specialists based in Hong Kong - the following four all have English websites:-

Jotus Model Depot - specialise in mail order, accepting credit cards through a secure site

80M Bus Model Shop  - have several shops in Hong Kong, all of which are well worth a visit. Also offer a mail order service.

Network Shuttle - have several shops and again specialise in mail order, accepting PayPal or major credit cards through a secure site

MSD BusShop 61-63, Apple Solo, 14 Kings Road, Tin Hau, Hong Kong Island(opposite Exit A1 of Tin Hau MTR Station)

All the above regularly provide this site with news and photographs of new models and further details of each can be found on the links page. Should you decide to use any of them, please mention this site.

If you are experiencing difficulty in obtaining a particular model, please e-mail me, and I will try and help you find it.


I have attempted to seek the appropriate permissions to use the various photographs on the site, however, if your photograph appears, for which I have not sought your permission for its use, please e-mail me and it will be removed immediately.

All the information included on this site is provided in good faith and I cannot therefore accept any responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions.

All photographs are copyright of Oriental Model Buses unless acknowledged to another source. You are NOT welcome to use any material or photographs without prior written permission from the owner.

As a matter of policy, I do not allow the use of any of my photographs

for use on auction sites such as eBay.

The following are some of eBay's copyright guidelines:-

eBay Guideline: Contrary to popular belief, the fact that material is posted on the world wide web does not mean it is in the "public domain" or otherwise free to be taken, copied or used by others. Creators of web content probably have copyright, trademark and other rights in the material they create. Copying, modifying and possibly linking to content created by others could expose you to legal liability.

eBay Guideline: No Copying Allowed! When you prepare your auction listings you generally should use only material (text, photographs, etc.) and trademarks/names that you created or own yourself or licensed from the owners.

eBay Guideline: No Unauthorised Linking to Photos! You cannot link to somebody else's picture (so it appears in your auction) without the owner's permission.

Living in the UK and buying from Hong Kong
For full details of charges that may be incurred by UK residents when buying from overseas, visit the UK Government's website, in particular the section for HM Revenue and Customs :- 'Notice 143: A guide for international post users'.
The Royal Mail may also charge a handling fee in addition to the above charges, all of which are collected by the Royal Mail.

[diecast models] - [information] - [links] - [news] - [plastic models] - [resin models] - [trams] - [xtra]
This page last updated Saturday, 1st June 2024
Oriental Model Buses