Cracking Singapore on a low budget

  • Southeast Asia’s most ultra-modern island city is surely hard to crack on a low budget. Yes, you are right, we are talking about Singapore, the lion city that never stops to amaze anybody with its cosmopolitan vibe.With the increasing tourist flow from India to Singapore, it is easier way to get a Singapore visa for Indian passport holders.

    Here we give you some insider tips on ‘how to save money in Singapore’ if you are on a Singapore holiday on a low budget.

    1. Accommodation

    It is one of the most important factors that can make or break your budget. Singapore does have some of the most luxurious hotels that provide you a premium experience. Having said that, Singapore also has a number of options for a traveller on a shoe-string budget. To begin with, there are a number of hostels that provide cheap accommodation in Singapore. The hostels in Singapore are a great value for money surfeit with breakfast and internet access. However, what if you are visiting with a family or are not a hostel person at all? Then head to Little India and Chinatown to find the cheapest accommodation options in Singapore. One more important thing that goes into deciding the hotel is your holiday schedule. Always stay closer to the places of your interest. This way, you are saving a whole lot on travel. Our suggestion for good budget hotels are CherryLoft, Aqueen Hotel Lavender, Grand Imperial Hotel and Cultural Hotel.

    Golden tip: Choose a hotel that provides free breakfast and Wi-Fi even if it is slightly costlier. It will work out to be cheaper.

    2. Food

    Generally, you will find affordable eating options around a budget hotel. However, Singapore has a whole fancy culture of food hawkers. We swear by their taste and the scintillating effect it leaves on your taste buds. The hawker stalls are famous for chilli crab, laksa soup, dim sums and char kway teow. It is very much possible to eat like a king on a pauper’s budget!

    Golden tip: The most delicious food in Singapore lies on the street.

    3. Partying

    To be very frank, if you are on a low budget, then partying can be re-looked at. However, knocking the ‘Happy Hours’ is a great option. There are couple of places in Singapore that will give you the taste of its nightlife at almost half the price. Ladies can take advantage of ‘ladies night’ and rope in some amazing discounts. Some economical options to shake a leg and chug down a few drinks are New Asia Bar, Brewerkz, Orgo and Wala Wala Café & Bar. Clarke Quay is the partying hub of Singapore.

    Golden tip: You can even hit some karaoke bars in Singapore and give singing a shot.

    4. Sightseeing

    Singapore is one destination that keeps on reinventing itself. Even in a span of one year, Singapore keeps on adding new attractions and / or recreates the old ones. In such a situation, it may really get difficult for you to zero down on places. Merlion Park, Gardens by the Bay, Chinatown, Little India, Labrador Nature Park (a WWII memorial), Singapore Botanic Gardens, hiking trails at Southern Ridges, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve and Bukit Timah Nature Reserve are absolutely free of cost, as in they charge no entrance fee.

    Golden tip: Things in Singapore that are free, fun and fantastic. 

    5. Transportation

    Private transportation doesn’t come cheap in Singapore. However, Singapore’s MRT service is affordable and well-connected to most of the areas. You could get an EZ-Link card sold at MRT stations and recharge it as per your convenience. Although this amount is not refundable, it is a cheaper option and can be used for various channels.

    Golden tip: EZ-Link card can be used at MRT & LRT stations, 7-11 stores, some restaurants and cafés.

    6. Shopping

    Be it for friends/families or yourself, shopping is definitely necessary when you are on a trip, especially a foreign trip. The Chinatown street markets are excellent to buy fridge magnets, Singapore branded tees, Merlion souvenirs and much more. Tourist privilege cards are available at some malls on Orchard Road that entitle you to some discounts.

    Golden tip: Get a receipt in case you have shopped over S$100 at one particular shop With this receipt, you may claim refund for tourist tax at the immigration counter post completing the necessary formalities at the Changi Airport.

    7. Free WiFi

    Wireless@SG is Singapore’s free public WiFi service. Wireless@SG is available in most malls, cafés and libraries, but it may not be fast enough to connect you to a video call. You may use the WiFi to update status on social media or check email and WhatsApp. The only pre-requisite is a local SIM card.

    Golden tip: Call using Facebook messenger or Viber. This way, you may save on your international calls.

    If you follow these simple tips, your Singapore holiday will be enjoyable and economical, at the same time.

    Author : Winnie Karnik