This country with a population of only 5 million people is included in the wishlist of tens of thousands of travelers. Incredible architecture, paradoxically high standard of living in Asia, luxury and exotic - I think many of us would like to see it all with our own eyes.
Katya and Kostya, who told us about wintering in Goa not so long ago, shared their experiences of living in this Asian country, dispelling some of the most famous myths.
We immediately say that 80% of the information we owned before leaving there was false. Neither the program “Eagle and Tails”, not a single forum or article gave us the information that we needed to know when going there to live, work or just travel.
Myths about Singapore
Myth one. Solid bans
You can not chew gum, you can not throw cigarette butts, you can not litter, you can not spit, you can not, you can not ...
Of course, there are all these signs in Singapore. But reality looks a little different. Next to the sign “No smoking” there will be a circle of smokers, in a place where it should be clean, there will be rubbish lying around, and where it is forbidden to skate, you will meet a crowd of teenagers on skates. And, of course, chewing gum is chewed there. So don't be scared. Everything is there, like normal people.
The second myth. Singapore has no homeless
And right away on the very first day, walking through the city, we met several "friends" who collected bottles and slept on a park bench.
From here collapses third myth. Who are these vagrants and why do they live on this street in this rich state?
These are pensioners. The fact is that there are no pensions in Singapore. Elderly people should contain children. And if the children were not very positive or wealthy people, then the fate of each parent is only one - to remain in the elderly on the street, as it is expensive to maintain housing in Singapore.
The fourth myth.Singapore is a great place to go to work
If you decide that you are a hero and can conquer any part of the globe, it is better to sink to the ground. Although we sincerely believed in it. English language, higher education, dedication and activity do not solve anything. No one advertise that for one and a half years, meetings against Europeans have been actively held in Singapore (Russians, Ukrainians - in general, all Slavs also did not please them). The Chinese want to see only Chinese and sometimes Hindus at work. It is easy to find a job, but in order to work, we need a work visa, with which the most frequent problem arises, since we simply are not given it because of the lack of quotas.
But, of course, there are exceptions. If you register a company in Singapore, if you are a first-class specialist (for example, a pilot, an aircraft mechanic, engineer, etc.) demanded in Singapore, if you come on an exchange, then you will be happy to be accepted. In other words, if you already have enough money, then you can go. But if you want to go to Singapore to earn, it will not work. To move to Singapore you need a good financial base.
The fifth myth. There are no traffic jams in Singapore and almost no traffic lights
There are traffic jams and a lot of traffic lights. At the red traffic lights, you can stand for 20 minutes. He has some long. Buy a car in Singapore is almost impossible. First, you need to pass on the rights, then get the rights on the rights, then pay a huge tax and pay a considerable amount for the car, because cars, of course, are very expensive in Singapore (most often you can see Ferrari, Bentley and more on the roads . P.).
Myth six. There is a beach in Singapore
The only three beaches you will find on the entertainment island of Sentosa. But you will not see the ocean, you will only see something similar to a quarry. Singapore is a port city, because of this the water in the bay is very dirty, it is almost impossible to swim, but it is possible. =) The very entertainment park Sentosa we really like. Yes, it does not coincide with the exotic that we had in fantasy, but the beaches are really very good. Attractions, shows, fountains, wind tunnel and much more. We went there all the time, had a picnic and still remember these moments with joy.
Singapore Accommodation. Here it is interesting. By law, you can not rent an apartment until you get a work permit, so you get a vicious circle. But thanks to our compatriots, of whom there are about 1,500 in Singapore, it is still possible to rent an apartment informally. We rented a room in Kondo, with a separate shower and toilet, in one of the most pleasant residential areas. On the territory we were pleased with the swimming pool, gym, barbecue area, cafe, tennis court, basketball court and a beautiful park. 300 meters from the seafront and about 20 minutes drive from the center. Costing a room of € 700, utilities included in the price. The place is simply gorgeous, called Вayshore park.
The room is more modest, in the area on the outskirts, but in a new house, we rented again from a compatriot for € 450 per month. Hotels in Singapore are expensive, renting an apartment and living with Indians or Chinese, which is probably not very good either, so the forum where we found accommodation can be useful to you: www.nashdom.sg.
Kitchen. Very tasty food. They have such places, called food court, there are many different restaurants, shops, eateries, etc. Prices from € 1. Chinese, Indian, Malay, Thai, Filipino food for every taste.
Products in stores: meat - expensive, cheaper chicken, pasta, noodles, vegetables - for nothing. We ate noodles and vegetables.
Transport. Metro, of course. Clean, fast, interesting. It is interesting to observe people. =) It is the same as in Moscow.
Visa. Citizens of Russia and the CIS countries need a visa to travel to Singapore, with the exception of a transit stay of 96 hours with a ticket to a third country.
Some facts about Singapore
Singapore is waiting for self-sufficient. Neither compatriots nor the Chinese will help you. Aid, most likely, wait on the Indians.
Singapore singular. He is waiting for successful and confident. If you have the opportunity to live or work there, be sure to agree. The beauty of the city center does not convey any words. For us, this is the city of the future. Avatar gardens, parks, Marina Bay Sands, observation platforms, DNA bridge, the biggest Ferris wheel - every time we came for a walk in the center, we could not believe that this was happening to us. The lights of the night city, skyscrapers, casinos and the smell of yummy at every turn. A zoo where you can have breakfast with monkeys, a botanical garden where you can walk for two days, embankments, Sentosa, grill zones, coconuts are some kind of unreal combination of civilization and exotics. In Singapore, you can experience the life of different nations, take a walk in the Indian, Chinese, Arabian quarters, ride a water bus, drink real tea.
Singapore is fashionable, but at the same time simple. Do not be afraid of prohibitions, the only thing you need to take care in advance (while still at home) is about a work visa, because as soon as you are stamped "approved", you will immediately open the door to a completely new planet, Singapore.
We spent some wonderful months in Singapore. And be sure to come back to live in this "space" yet.
Katya and Kostya Shapovalov, organizers of the Hellomir project.
Have you ever been to Singapore? Share your impressions and discoveries in the comments.
1. Awesome nightlife
As in many cities of the world, the whole nightlife of Singapore is concentrated in the center.
If you want to have a good time and have fun, then Leo City has a lot to offer you. For those who love to dance all night, the nightclub Zouk is the best place, if you're lucky, you can see performances by such famous DJs as David Guetta and The Chemical Brothers.
There are bars on the roofs with breathtaking views. Well, if you manage to visit the seashore, then the Marina Bay Sands casino and the Clarke quay is the most for night parties.
How to get there and what is needed for this?
It will take you a lot of time to fly, if you fly from Moscow, then about 10 hours, which, of course, is tiring. You can search for options with transfers, usually they are carried out in the UAE or in Bangkok, Thailand.
You will need a visa to travel if you have arrived in the country for more than 4 days. It is necessary to take care of it in advance, usually it is done in just a few working days.
As for customs, everything is simple: as elsewhere, the importation of drugs, various psychotropic and some drugs is prohibited, a full list of prohibited products can be found on the embassy website.
Remember that before going to Singapore you should carefully prepare yourself, because, as in this country, there are a lot of restrictions and fines that may not be completely understood by our tourist.
For example, there is a ban on chewing gum, sell it only in pharmacies and only on prescription. They did not expect? That is why it is so important to inquire about the rules and habits of the country to which you are going.
The local currency is Singapore dollars, it is they are accepted in all stores and hotels, so the funds brought with them must be exchanged.
Another point: in Singapore there is no tip, firstly, they are already included in the cost of services, and, secondly, it simply does not combine with the education and local mentality of residents.
Singapore's climate and hotels
The island’s climate is quite hot, the overall impression may be impaired by the very high humidity, which is explained by the tropical monsoon climate.
Almost all year round, the temperature here is kept at 32 ° degrees, the most favorable and “dry” months for visiting are the period from June to August, even September and October can still be attributed to tolerable options.
From November and almost until the very end of winter in Singapore, the period of rains begins, the price of hotels traditionally falls at this time, except for periods of festivals and holidays, of which there are a great many.
As for accommodation, be calm, there are simply no bad hotels or hotels here, even the status of 2 * -3 * promises a rather high service.
If you are going on holidays with children, then perhaps you should stay in hotels located closer to the sea, on Sentosa Island. Urban-type hotels located closer to the center of Singapore do not have their own territory and usually represent high-rise buildings.
What to see?
Sights of Singapore is a whole separate chapter on which you can talk long and hard. Of course, this list will open the magical amusement park Universal Studios, which is located on the island of Sentosa.
Here you will find dizzying rides for children and adults, as well as impressive shows and festivals, in addition, here, on the territory of the complex, you will find the world's largest oceanarium and water park.
In its pools, sea water is used and anyone can swim with a mask under the water, surrounded by real tropical fish and corals. Here, not far away, there is a huge zoo or, more correctly, an animal reserve, on whose territory the largest population of orangutans lives in captivity. In this place, the animals do not sit in cages, they walk freely in their reserve, which is protected by rocks, vegetation and waterfalls.
If you went to Singapore, be sure to visit the night safari and bird park Jurong Bird park, futuristic gardens with huge greenhouses, crowded with the most rare and different representatives of the subtropical fauna.
Be sure to visit the huge shopping malls, because Singapore is the first transshipment hub of all products and even the latest fashion fashions. Do not forget to visit the local restaurants with traditional cuisine, which boasts a list of its own famous dishes.
For example, here you should try chili crab, fried carrot cake, chicken with rice in Haino and Laksa (noodles and shrimps). And finally, do not forget to admire the night views of the city, which at this time turns into a real city of the future, a space station with atmospheric illuminated skyscrapers, leaving in an endless heights.
Fly to Singapore cheap: myth or true? The cost of our trip.
This post was created specifically to make an objective conclusion - you can still in Singapore fly for cheap or not? There are so many myths that this is a super expensive city, that there is no cheap rent of apartments, hotels, and housing in general. In part, these myths have a right to exist. After all, Singapore is a modern metropolis, with many amenities and developed infrastructure. Naturally, you have to pay for it :)
But, on the other hand, as we already understood from our experience of independent travels, it does not matter to which city or country you are flying. There is always a cheap way, albeit with a minimum, but comfort to spend a few days even in Singapore. At the same time, you will not spoil your impression of it as an amazing and unique city in all of Southeast Asia.
Against the background of the Marina Bay Hotel in Singapore to content ↑
Flights to Singapore
Let's go in order. The first thing you need to spend money on is airfare. In our case, we are definitely lucky. First, we flew from Phuket, it is relatively close to Singapore. Secondly, they used a local low-cost airline, which is very numerous in Asia, Jetstar. By ordering directly from this airline, it turned out even cheaper than AirAsia offered us.
Booking hotel in singapore
Let's go further. After buying a ticket, you need to book a hotel. Even here we didn’t become particularly picky because we knew that most of the time we would be on sightseeing and getting to know the city. We needed to take off for two nights. We specifically chose a flight that arrives in the morning until earlier, or rather, almost at night :) Therefore, our first day began at 6:00 in the morning :)
Accommodation options in hotels in Singapore:
The cost of a hostel for two nights for two: 80 Singapore dollars or 3760 rubles
After booking the hotel and air tickets, you will need to apply for a visa to Singapore. This process is mandatory for all citizens of Russia. And here, too, you can save a little. Namely, choose an accredited official agency (directly, unfortunately, for some time it is impossible to submit documents), which will do it at a lower cost, compared to other companies. The total price for a visa on the Internet ranges from 40 to 100 US dollars.
The cost of a visa to Singapore for two: 5654 rubles
Singapore visa to content ↑
On-site transport (Singapore subway)
After you flew to Singapore, settled into the hotel (well, or before settling, who has what plan-boar as they say), you need to resolve the issue of transport and movements. We chose the best option - it is to travel by subway. Especially in Singapore, it is very developed, stable, fast - in general, some advantages. To save on travel, we purchased a special EZ-Link card.
Travel by metro (3 full days, an average of 5-6 trips per day): $ 10 - two travel cards, $ 30 - travel for two, for a total of $ 40 or 1,880 rubles
Metro in Singapore to content ↑
In the process of moving around Singapore, you will have a choice of visiting certain sights. Many of them are paid and cost quite a lot of money, transferring to the ruble exchange rate :) We chose no less spectacular and beautiful sights, spending only one viewing platform. At the same time, the impressions received in the aggregate were exactly not less than if they had forked out, for example, $ 40 for each person behind the observation wheel :) There was no free time, the schedule was visited tightly :)
Spent on sights: 10 Singapore dollars or 470 rubles
In general, planning a trip is a very useful event :) Although our trip was small in time, only three days, but we prepared for it more carefully. Since in an unfamiliar city, and even with a currency that is quite close in performance to the usual dollar, it is better not to joke and clearly know what, where and how you will do.
Planning a trip is a guarantee that you will not spend extra money on unforeseen actions. Singapore is not an exception, but on the contrary, the most general rule.
By the way, just below in the comments there is a link to the electronic version of the boar plan :)
How to eat cheap in Singapore?
Also quite naturally, the question arises of food, water, drinks, etc. You can eat inexpensively in special food courts with predominantly Chinese, Malaysian food. We mainly ate in Chinatown, very tasty and very cheap :) We bought water in 7-Eleven stores, they are well known to us in Thailand. Also in many public places there are special machines for drinking, completely free.
Food, water, drinks, food, etc. for three days for two: 50 Singapore dollars or 2350 rubles
Food courts in Chinatown (Singapore) to content ↑
If everything is folded, then our a turnkey trip to Singapore for three full daystwo nights cost us for two 26.084 rubles. Or about 13 thousand rubles for one. Of course, tickets from Moscow to Singapore will be much more expensive. Но тем не менее, этими подсчетами мы хотели доказать, а точнее разрушить один из мифов — Сингапур это не обязательно дорого, платно и сурово:)
Вовсе нет, наши впечатления крайне положительные, конечно мы ограничивали себя в чем-то, но это мелочи по сравнению с главной задачей — проникнуться самим городом, страной. After all, Ponte Ponte, all this secular prosperous life that everyone has in mind, but believe me, there is nothing more emotional than talking to the Chinese, who make up 70% of the population of Singapore over a mug of delicious beer and snacks, which they treat you for free. Hear how they all gather here every week, although they are all over 60 years old and understand what the strength of their community is and where all this genuine optimism comes from :)
- Decide on the date of departure on a trip
- Calculate trip budget
- Buy flights
- To book a hotel
- Get medical insurance (preferably, but not necessarily)
- Get a visa (if required)
- Go on a trip
Getting to this state is most convenient on the plane. Buy tickets to Singapore is best on the site Aviasales.ru. This service finds cheap tickets, scanning offers from most international airlines. On different sites, the same air ticket may cost differently, but thanks to Aviasales you will receive a ticket at the lowest price. I have been using this site almost since its discovery, and there are no complaints about its work. Usually cheap tickets to Singapore (there and back) cost 450 €.
Fly to Singapore can be sent to Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kiev, Minsk, and sometimes there are flights from the regions. Direct flights are more expensive, if you want to save, then buy tickets for flights with transfer. And another tip: buy tickets in advance, the sooner the better, at least 3 months, and better for 6, then prices will be minimal.
If you are already in one of the countries of Southeast Asia, then it is easier and cheaper to fly to Singapore on a low-cost airline (low-cost carrier). The ticket will cost a few tens of dollars.
There are no cheap hotels in Singapore, there are only relatively cheap ones. But all of them are comfortable, there are air-conditioners everywhere (this is simply necessary if you consider that the average temperature in the city is + 32 0 C: the equator is not far away), the staff is friendly and caring. There are, of course, hostels, the stay in which does not greatly affect your budget, but not all travelers agree to exchange a hotel for a hostel. What is a hostel and how to stay budget read here.
Book hotel in Singapore safer on the website Roomguru.ru. This is an international project that was used by millions of people around the world. And the prices of the rooms will delight anyone. There is also a similar company, Hotellook.ru, which provides similar opportunities for searching, but is not as convenient, has fewer filters for searching and thematic hotel collections, which greatly facilitate the selection of a place to rest. Read how to book a hotel in this article yourself.
Rental of property
When traveling around the world, it is important for every tourist to solve the problem with the place of temporary residence. Going to Singapore, many are ready to stay in local hotels and boarding houses. But the hotel room is not a cheap pleasure, especially when the planned trip is rather long and includes more than 5 people. For such a case, the Airbnb website was created, where you can independently book an apartment, a small room or a house, this accommodation option is sometimes more beneficial for a large company than staying at a hotel, although it has its drawbacks, in particular, you need to pay special attention to security and the choice of a suitable option, so you need to know in advance what features rent apartments on airbnb. But let's see what makes this service so attractive for tourists.
- The opportunity to save. The Airbnb website has many lucrative offers that make renting apartments in any country in the world, including Singapore, no longer a problem for companies / families of 5 or more people. Here to book accommodation is especially important during the holidays, since the cost of living in hotel rooms is greatly increasing, and the price of rented apartments remains the same. There is also a special Airbnb discount, which is given for the first rental, and allows you to save a little.
- The ability to rent a house is absolutely in any area of the city. Booking apartments will allow you to live in a variety of residential options. You can rent a choice of apartments located in a skyscraper, ordinary apartments, detached villas and penthouses, large cottages and even yachts. At the same time there is a budget option - a room in the apartment. So to say, you can choose housing for every taste and budget.
- Unforgettable experience and experience. Renting an apartment through Airbnb, you can plunge into the atmosphere of the traditions of the country, expand your horizons and gain valuable experience. Rental housing in Singapore is a great opportunity to appreciate the characteristics and quality of life.
- Communicating with the owner of the apartment will allow you to improve your own language skills. Thus, you will be able to clarify information about the location of a particular attraction, learn something from the history of the country, about real prices and life principles of Singapore.
In conclusion, I would like to note that the rental service is an excellent assistant not only for the selection and rental of housing, but can also become a real lifesaver for you. While you are traveling the world, you can also rent out your own apartment without intermediaries through this site, which will allow you to cover, for example, the cost of the same road.
Singapore has a lot of different types of attractions, so people on arrival rarely ask themselves what to see and where to go. Everyone can create their own program of visiting interesting places. The most popular are: Singapore Zoo (in 2006 recognized as one of the best places in the world for family holidays), the Ferris wheel (the largest in the world), a botanical garden. I will give a list of the most memorable sights of Singapore:
- Ferris wheel
- Botanical Garden
- Optical Illusion Museum
- Parks Night Safari and River Safari
- Jurong Bird Park
- Amusement Park Universal Studios
If you are visiting Singapore in transit and are going to stay in the country for less than 96 hours, then you will not need a visa. Upon arrival at the airport of this country, you will receive a transit visa if you have:
- Availability of a ticket for a specific date in a third country
- Passport with a clean page and valid for more than 6 months
- Funds for staying in Singapore or confirmed hotel bookings for the entire stay
The trip will be considered a transit only if it is confirmed by a ticket to a third country. For example, fly from Moscow to Singapore, and then from Singapore to Bangkok (Moscow - Singapore - Bangkok) - you will be given a transit visa along this route. But if the route is as follows: Moscow-Singapore-Moscow, then you can not count on a transit visa, you will have to arrange a regular one.
It is important to know that some low-cost air carriers (for example, AirAsia) in all cases require a regular visa, even if you fly to Singapore in transit, so always check this item with the airline. If you still counted on a transit visa and bought a ticket from a low-cost airline, but you are not allowed to board the plane, then refer to the TIMATIC information system, specifically to the “transit” section (the low-cost airlines employees like to refer to the “entry” section, which states that a visa is required for entry, but you have a transit trip). And best of all to print these sections and present them in case of problems.
In all other cases, a visa is required. You can get the usual visa (not transit) online. If you need help, contact Pony Express (they will help you with filling out an application, scan all the necessary documents, there are offices throughout Russia).
To Singapore from Asian resorts
Some travelers who are already on holiday in the resorts of the nearby Asian countries (mainly Thailand and Vietnam) use a trick that allows you to get a transit visa even if they return to their resort again. Here's an example of how to get from Thailand to Singapore by yourself: You are now relaxing in Bangkok, but you want to drop by for a couple of days to Singapore and go back to Bangkok, then the order is the following: buy the cheapest return ticket (from Singapore) to any other nearby third country (Malaysia or Indonesia), this will be a confirmation that you are visiting Singapore by transit, and after the trip just do not fly to Malaysia or Indonesia, you can immediately return to Bangkok. True, a ticket to a third country will disappear, but it costs only a couple of tens of dollars, but you will not have to bother with a visa. This method is mainly used by travelers from Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya.
If you expect to rest in Singapore for more than 4 days, then apply for a regular visa.
It is important to remember that in Singapore are very heavy fines, even for minor offenses. If you chew chewing gum in a public place, you will part with $ 500 (Singapore dollars), for having a snack in a public place, the punishment is exactly the same, you will have to pay $ 1,000 for smoking, and you will be fined $ 5000 for bringing it to a public place . Fines for motorists are in a large range, from $ 120 to $ 1000, there is also a penalty of arrest up to 6 months. For example, if you go to the prohibitory signal of the traffic light, then you will part with $ 200.
Everywhere there are signs on which is drawn, what is prohibited and how much fine is due for it, so follow local laws.
Here are some Singapore fines (from $ 500):
- Throw trash out of the urn
- Food consumption in a public place
- Import more than one cigarette blog
- Running fireworks in the wrong place
- Spitting in a public place
- Exceeding speed from 50 to 60 km / h on a car (up to $ 1,000 or arrest up to 6 months)
- Talking on a cell phone while driving (deprivation of rights or arrest)
Some violations include corporal punishment (strikes with a thin stick that leaves marks on the body after the strike); these include: vandalism, attempted murder, armed robbery, violation of immigration laws and length of stay in the country. Also in Singapore there is the death penalty, used in most cases in relation to drug traffickers.
Cost of rest
Traveling to Singapore is quite expensive. The main items of expenditure are as follows (standard rest per person, per week):
- Flights to and from = 500 €
- Hotel room (6 nights) = 700 €
- Food = 150 €
- Public transportation = € 100
- Sightseeing = 200 €
- Various purchases = 250 €
- Visa = 35 €
Total: 1935 €. You can spend your vacation much cheaper if you buy airline tickets at the airline's special offer (you need to monitor the airline websites for several months), live in a hostel (need to pay € 20 per night), do not spend money on various purchases. You can also become a real independent traveler and spend only $ 1500 or even less for a month of travel. Learn how to travel cheaply in this guide.
How to save on travel
- Get tickets on the site Aviasales.ru. So you fly to Singapore cheaper.
- Book hotels on RoomGuru. Huge selection of places to stay. The service does not charge extras and finds the most interesting offers.
- Book a hotel and buy flights a few months before the trip.
- You can check into the hostel and pay a lot less for housing. Book a place in the hostel can be all on the same RoomGuru.
- If you are settled in the hostel, you can cook your own food in the kitchen. Just go to the supermarket, buy groceries and cook something for yourself, so you can save money on restaurants and cafes.
Now you know how to go to Singapore on your own. Use these tips and advice, they will significantly improve your vacation. Rest in this country is interesting and quite unusual. Do not delay the trip, because life goes on, you need to see as many beautiful places on our planet as possible. Best wishes to you!