Why We Started Sam the Local

You’ve heard many stories from our Locals in the past few weeks and today, Sam the Local Co-Founder, Anita, will share how the company came to be.

Maggie and Anita

Maggie and I moved to Hong Kong 5 years ago from California. We met in Hong Kong through mutual friends and realized we both moved to Hong Kong due to our love and curiosity of the city. We each found our way to the city through our jobs. We worked, explored the city, and learned so much more about the city through our friends and families. They would introduce us to their own hidden gems, places to eat at, favorite hikes, and where they liked to visit in their local neighborhood. What we realized is that everyone has unique knowledge and stories they like to share with other people. We decided that we couldn’t keep all this interesting knowledge to ourselves or risk other people missing out on what makes this city special – the people and their stories.

RISE Food Crawl_750x563

We launched Sam the Local in January 2015 so that people like you could experience Hong Kong as you would with a local friend. Each of these experiences is private and customized, with an itinerary tailored just for you so you don’t need to spend time thinking about what to do, where to go, get lost finding it, or dealing with language barriers. Once you get there, your personal storyteller tells you why that place is special/unique.

We knew that they couldn’t be just anybody that was taking our dear friends and customers around. Ultimately we revised our processes to where we are now. Each Local that as a profile on our website has gone through a 2-step screening process, a phone interview followed by a 1-hour trial experience with one of us, so before they get to you, we know they are friendly, personable, and knowledgable people. We have been taken to many places and each place has different stories and facts based on who is showing us, their own interests, experiences, and knowledge.

Outing with Locals

Of all names, why do we call our company, Sam the Local? Because everyone has a friend named Sam, it’s a gender neutral name and what we do is very human and we want to personify this. Each of these people on our platform would be like your Local friend showing you around. The irony? Despite having 60+ Locals on our website that speak 10+ languages, none of them are named Sam. 🙂

Our goal for the year: To be able to share more of these exclusive stories with you, so you can see this city in a different light.

I want to go on an experience!

Sam the Local connects you to people so that you have access to word-of-mouth knowledge that can’t be found through forums or Top 10 lists. Our Locals build an itinerary based on your interests and then take you to see the things based on the itinerary. Pick a Local to book for your Outing, and please reach out if you have any questions.

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Sam the Local

Sam the Local connect you with Hong Kong insiders for customized experiences based on your interests.


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