Whether you are relocating to Singapore for work or pleasure, there are several factors you must familiarise yourself with ahead of time. This can streamline the entire process from start to finish and allow you to experience a stress-free move. From upfront costs and hidden fees to age-old customs and traditions, it can pay to be prepared. Continue reading to find out what you should know before moving to Singapore.
It can be expensive
Before you relocate to Singapore, it may benefit you to know that it can be relatively expensive. The reason why will differ from local to local but, as with most countries associated with a high cost of living, it is possible to get by on a budget. This can be done by shopping and eating out at local food markets and stalls, avoiding tourist hotspots, and relying on public transport to get to and from work on a daily basis. From buses, taxis, and trains, there are more ways than ever before to travel within the country. In addition, Singapore also benefits from a relatively low rate of income tax compared to a number of European countries. For example, by comparing the cost of living in Singapore with the cost of living in London, you are much more likely to have spare cash left over at the end of each month when you relocate to the Garden City.
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A short-term lease is common
With the cost of buying and renting in Singapore continuing to increase at a steady pace, finding a suitable place to live can require a great deal of time, effort, and money. You may also struggle to source accommodation within close proximity of key public transport links such as bus, train, and metro stations. This is one of the main reasons why a short-team lease is a common option for a growing number of homeowners or foreigners on the hunt for their forever home in Singapore. By opting for temporary accommodation or choosing a short-term lease, you can find out everything you need to know ahead of time and determine which geographical location is perfect for you in order to settle down and start a family or make the switch to Singaporean residency on a long-term basis. Before you make an informed decision, however, you must also research which financial options are available to you. For example, you may qualify for a BOC Home Loan.
You must find a job beforehand
If you have decided to move to Singapore, it may benefit you to find a job before you even set foot onto the plane. The country is home to a series of strict employment laws that may prevent you from finding a job as a non-Singaporean resident. As a result, it is crucial to secure an offer in principle before you relocate. This will then grant you access to an employment pass from the Ministry of Manpower which can assist you in your journey as a foreign professional to seek long-term employment. In order to acquire an employment pass, you must able be able to prove that you earn a minimum of $4,500 per month and are equipped with relevant qualifications. Whilst you may be able to visit neighbouring countries on a tourist visa before eventually deciding to settle down, Singaporean authorities tend to be a little stricter.
It can be very hot
As with most countries located just miles from the equator, Singapore benefits from hot temperatures throughout the year. But whilst this may spark joy in those accustomed to below freezing temperatures, it can take time to adjust to. With each passing month, the temperature rarely drops below 30 degrees, and the humidity tends to remain relatively unchanged. The country does, however, benefit from mass air conditioning with most residential and commercial buildings home to an AC unit. As a result, you must pack accordingly and be prepared to overhaul your wardrobe from the second you land on the tarmac.
It is extremely clean
As a first-time visitor to the country, you may be taken aback at how clean Singapore is. This is largely due to a country-wide campaign in the 1980s overseen by former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew where the public consumption of chewing gum was banned. If you do decide to litter or find yourself watching on as a fellow foreigner makes the same mistake, there is a harsh punishment and even heftier price to pay.
Before you make the move to Singapore, there are a number of factors you must familiarise yourself with ahead of time. By doing so, you can ensure the entire process is as stress-free as it possibly can be. For example, it can be expensive, a short-term lease is common, you must find a job beforehand, it can be very hot, and it is extremely clean.