Helpful Things to Know Before Visiting Singapore

The beautiful city of Singapore was recently showcased in the new blockbuster hit, Crazy Rich Asians. As a person who's lived in Asia for 24 years, I'm very fortunate to have been twice and am eager to share what I know. If you are planning to visit Singapore, one of the first steps is to start the travel document acquisition process. The One Visa site is the best solution especially if the purpose of your travel is employment. While this process is being completed, your next important project is to get to know this small but wealthy destination. Read on to find out more about Singapore, beyond the box office hit.

Speaking English
If you are worried about the language barrier, then you can breathe a sigh of relief. Most Singaporeans are literate, and the state’s schools teach English as a primary language. Even though there is cultural diversity in the country, you can expect that the majority of the people will understand and speak English well. However, in my experience, there were older people who did not speak English (or maybe pretended not to). Be sure to say hi and just ask your question straight  up instead of asking if they speak English though, so as not to offend anyone.

Warm and Humid Climate
Since the state is close to the equator, the weather stays relatively the same all year round. Like most of southeast asia, expect it to be hot or hotter. Therefore, you need to plan well as you will need light and absorbent clothes most of the time. When it comes to choice of shoes, you are likely to be better off with open shoes like flip-flops under most circumstances. If you have to wear closed shoes due to work-related requirements, ensure that you have cotton socks underneath to take care of the sweat.

Metered Taxis and Cabs
The law in Singapore requires taxis to charge by the distance traveled. Even though the rate is regulated as well, you are likely to use a lot of money if you rely on them at all times. Not to mention, cabs in Singapore vary with regards to model and peak hours. They also impose surcharges like highway tolls on your bill. A particularly dreadful memory was when we were smacked with a SG$26 bill driving a block because we were unaware. More affordable options include ridesharing apps like Uber or, better yet, public trains and buses to keep transportation costs low.

Safety in Singapore
Don't be scared of bringing your family to Singapore. There is much written about how Singapore is one of the safest cities in the world. While the country has enhanced security and safety of the highest levels, this does not mean that it has zero crime. You still need to be cautious especially when using the back streets at night and visiting the bars. If you find yourself in a threatening situation, you can dial 999 and seek police help at any time. They are very responsive.

Wi-Fi Hotspot Availability
Singapore is advanced in technology and internet connectivity. Since it is a quickly developing country, almost every business is now offering a free Wi-Fi hotspot. Some Wi-Fi networks are open, which can be a risk if you are dealing with sensitive transactions, while others are password protected and require you to justify that you need to use the network. However, business travelers are in a position to conduct their business without a hitch while in Singapore.

Even though there are more things you need to know before traveling to Singapore, the list we have shared above will be of great help to you. It has the most important things to know.

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