There are only three city-states all over the world. Two of them are in Europe. There’s the Vatican City, and there’s Monaco.
The third and last city-state in the world is in Asia, which has the nickname of The Lion City. Would you gander a guess of what place that is?
Well, the answer is the prosperous country of Singapore. Too many surprises so are Hong Kong, not a city-state.
The island of Singapore is one of the most stable economies in the world. One of the major industries in the country that is supporting its economy is its tourism.
Singapore is a unique country, and there are certain things about it that you should know before you consider going there. After all, you wouldn’t want to make mistakes and risk offending the locals when you’re there.
On that note, before you start packing your luggage sets, here are 15 things you need to know before your visit.
Brush up on your Singlish.
Schools in Singapore teach English as one of its primary languages. However, you shouldn’t assume that everyone you encounter there can understand English.
Otherwise, you might get yourself into quite a pickle. On that note, you might want to brush up on a bit of Singlish or Singaporean English before your trip.
Singlish is a blend of English and Singaporean slang. There are a lot of Singlish that locals apply to everyday life. One example is “Can or not?”
They say this when they want to ask if something is possible. Another famous example would be “lah,” which they add at the very end of sentences only for emphasis.
Heading To Singapore and wonder what to do and which attractions to see?
The humidity can be intense.
Before travelling to any new place, you should always check up on what the weather or climate is going to be. For Singapore, one thing that will hit you like a ton of bricks would be the humidity. If you’re not used to it, you’re going to end up sweating like a pig when you’re there, so pack light clothes.
Also, Singapore has a lot of thunderstorms. So much so that they’re the lightning capital of the world. Therefore, you should prepare yourself for the eventual storm that you might catch when you’re there.
Airbnb rentals are mostly illegal.
For a lot of people travelling with a budget, Airbnb is a life-saver. It offers affordable lodging for travellers all over the world. Unfortunately, though, Airbnb can be anywhere in the world except for Singapore. However, there are plenty of other affordable accommodations available if you know where to look.
For example, you can stay in hostels instead that you can find in Chinatown or Little India of Singapore. Another place you can find affordable lodging would be the popular budget hotel chains in Singapore. Look for the name Hotel 81 or Fragrance Hotels when you want to book a room.
Experience local dishes at Hawker Centres.
If you want to try out Singaporean food without drilling a hole in your wallet, then you should go to the hawker centres.
There is a lot of local and international cuisine available there, and it won’t cost you too much money. A must-have dish when you’re in Singapore would be the Hainanese chicken rice and satay.
Tipping is not mandatory.
If you’re used to the tipping culture in some Western countries, then you should know that it’s different in Singapore. In your receipt, you can usually find a service charge in addition to the food that you’re paying for in cafes or restaurants. These are indirect tips, so people don’t expect you to tip.
If you want to, though, it’s not illegal to tip, so feel free to make your service staff’s day with a tip.
Get around by taking their public transportation.
Unlike in countries outside of Singapore, you won’t have to worry about how to get around the country. Singapore’s public transportation system is reliable, and it can take you all over the country with ease.
Whether it’s a bus, train, or taxi, all of these options are quite viable if you want to get around.
Access the Internet anytime, anywhere.
Another great thing about Singapore is that there are plenty of places in Singapore that offers WiFi services. Even tourists can connect to them.
All you need to be able to connect to the public WiFi is your mobile number, and then they’ll send you a one-time password. After that, you’re pretty much good to go.
Chewing gum is banned.
One interesting fact that people often talk about when it comes to fun facts about Singapore is that they don’t have chewing gum there. Buying, selling, and even importing chewing gum is illegal. If you have some on you, you need to be discreet about how you get rid of them.
Better yet, don’t have some on you before your trip so you won’t worry about getting rid of gum.
Smoke in designated areas.
Although gums are illegal, smoking isn’t. However, there are stringent rules in Singapore around it. If you’re a smoker, then you should know that you’re not allowed to smoke indoors.
There are specific smoking points in a lot of areas that you have to hunt down.
Don’t be reckless because smoking might get you a conviction in court or a fine of up to a thousand dollars.
When you get to Singapore, you’ll notice how clean everywhere is. Even the areas where you would expect it to be dirty are still quite decent.
With that said, you should know that the No Littering rule is also strictly enforced. There are plenty of trash bins available, so you can wait until you find one to throw away your trash.
All over the country, the golden rule is that you keep left whenever you’re on the go. This rule applies for when you drive, walk, and when you’re on the escalator, and so on.
You won’t receive a citation, or anything of you stand on the right. However, following their flow would be courteous.
They have many variations of coffee.
There are plenty of coffee shops in Singapore, and they have a lot of variations in their coffee. There’s Kopi-O, which is plain black coffee. There’s Kopi-C, which is still black coffee but with evaporated milk.
There’s a lot more out there, and it’s always interesting to find out local coffee culture.
Alcohol drinks are expensive.
If you plan on trying out some of the local alcohol, then do note that alcoholic drinks in Singapore are quite expensive. You also can’t purchase or drink alcohol publicly after 10:30 PM.
If you want cheaper booze, your best bet would be a duty-free shop at the airport before entering the country. The hawker centres are an excellent source too.
Tap water is safe for consumption.
You don’t need to buy bottled water when you’re in Singapore. Why? Because tap water here is safe for consumption and has no weird taste.
Drinking tap water from your place of accommodation is okay, but don’t do it in public places like coffee shops or especially the hawker centres.
Take advantage of free attractions.
Although there are a lot of expensive things in Singapore, you don’t have to worry about entertainment. There are a lot of free attractions that you can try in Singapore. All of the parks in Singapore are free to enter.
The light and water shows at the Marina Bay Sands and the Gardens by the Bay are also free. There are so many more free attractions that you can try, so save up your money for other things.
Singapore is a modern city-state that has a lot of conveniences but also a lot of rules. Before you visit, make sure that you run through this list and remember these key reminders about the way of life in Singapore.
That way, your trip to Singapore is hassle-free and full of excitement and joy instead.
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