Why you should not (just) visit Singapore.
That's right. You should not visit Singapore. What’s to like? The weather is crazy humid, the roads and walkways are almost always packed and the people just aren’t that nice. So why don’t you live here instead! (Stick with me for a second and let me explain myself)
Sweating like a sinner in church
It’s a small island along the equator so you can’t expect anything less. Tropical spouts of rain followed by constant sun generate a lot of humidity. Tourists who come over, start and end the day in drenched tops and drained faces.
A quick run to the store leaves you longing for a bath, for crying out loud!
But unlike countries in Europe, we don’t have to battle with the ups and downs of the four seasons. No chapped lips or frozen pipes. No autumn allergies or wool-induced rash.
No need to buy a ton of different clothes to respect the seasons.
Living in this weather means you learn how to work around it. First of all, you can always be sure to have a tan; the beaches are never closed. Also, shopping centres are everywhere and so is air-conditioning.
From your serviced apartment to the train station and to work, you’ll only briefly touch the outdoors during your daily commute. If you walk from home to work though, that’s on you.
If driving is expensive, then only I am poor.
Renting (or buying) a car here for your trip is not cheap but somehow the roads are always teeming with traffic. The island is so small that couple with less-than scenic sights, it hardly makes any sense to rent a car during your trip.
However, living here would teach you a thing or two about transportation here. Public transportation, for example, is great! You skip the jams, ERP and the expensive parking. Our buses are comprehensive and trains; clean and frequent.
So just forget about the cars here. It’s unreasonably costly and you won’t even get to enjoy the drive.
It doesn’t matter where you’re from.
I’ll be the first to admit that there used to be a preconception of social-superiority amongst foreigners of non-Asian descent over Singaporeans. Long gone are those days. The local economy is strong and standards of living have improved.
Singaporeans have forged a (somewhat) sense of nationalistic pride. So don’t expect your nationality to be considered ‘exotic’ here. Remember, we see a mass of different people everywhere we go.
BUT, say you settle here, start living with the locals. You make some new friends, form new social circles and start contributing to society. Before you know it, these ‘cold’ local will start opening up and taking an interest in you and your background.
Instead of just being Jamaican (or wherever you are from), allow yourself to become Singaporean-Jamaican. The gals/guys will definitely like that more.
It pays to be safe.
As I said before, the standard of living here is high. Health supplements, branded handbags, Timberland’s, Levi’s, pet care items, sports equipment and even cosmetics; all these items are cheaper in America than in Singapore, for example.
As a tourist, if you are coming here for a bargain hunt; look elsewhere. Although the consumption tax here is not as high as other countries, it is higher than most.
But Singapore is safe. Now, with booming tourist industries and initiatives in many countries, you won’t feel the pressures of dangers as someone visiting an underdeveloped country.
So what I’m saying is for all its negatives, Singapore is actually a great place to live in. From the outside, it might look like Singapore is a fast-paced money hungry progress-driven crazy island but for what its worth, society here has found a balance between cultural assimilation and rapid economic growth.
The country welcomes skilled immigrants and has a great base for integration. Boasting such a tolerant attitude, why wouldn’t you come to live in Singapore?