Important Things to Know and Think About Before Moving to Singapore: A Guide for Expats

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Moving to Singapore will provide you and your loved ones with tons of brilliant opportunities. Known for its safe neighbourhoods, stunning scenery, fantastic healthcare, and ginormous expat community, you are sure to be in safe hands if you’re planning to move to the country.

Before you get packing your bags and start your new life overseas, there are certain things to know and think about first. Whether you just want to learn more about the country and its culture, or to get you excited for what awaits, here are some things expats should bear in mind first.

Prepare for the Humidity

Singapore is a country that sits just above the equator. Because of this, the country’s climate is about as tropical as it possibly gets! You can expect pleasant temperatures all year round. In fact, the entire 12 months could see you soaking up the sunshine! Thankfully, most properties across the island come with air conditioning. This means you won’t have to worry about staying cool when the sun is beating down. If you’re not the biggest lover of sunshine and high humidity, we recommend looking at other countries to settle down in!

You Will Need a Job Before Moving

This one is very important. Singapore has very tight visa and employment laws. These are in place to regulate who can and cannot work in the country. In a nutshell, most people will need to have a job or an offer of one in place before they can even think of moving to Singapore. After this is confirmed, you can obtain your employment pass from the Ministry of Manpower. Thanks to Singapore’s booming job market, you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding the right role for your talents. 

Pick the Right Place to Live

Singapore’s housing market is booming. There are plenty of properties and communities to call home. When you start to look into homes, you may need to find and compare home loans to cover the total cost. PropertyGuru can help you find a suitable home loan for your needs. They have an extensive list of properties to buy and rent in Singapore, including condos. Take your time hunting for the right property. You want to make sure you pick an abode that’s suitable for you and all the family. 

Healthcare Is Excellent

One of the drawing factors of Singapore is its excellent medical care. This is all thanks to the country’s universal healthcare system that’s funded by the public and government. There are three areas of the country’s healthcare system to know about. These are the MediSheild, MediSave, and MediFund. The latter is for citizens only, whereas MediSave and MediShield are open to permanent residents. You must pay a monthly amount into a healthcare savings account which is put towards the healthcare system. 

Be Aware of Fines

If there is one thing Singapore is infamous for, it’s their harsh punishments and fines. Because of this, you need to be on your best behaviour the moment you land in the country. Before you do set foot on Singapore land, it’s wise to familiarise yourself with some basic laws. For example, it’s against the law to eat or drink on public transport. You are also not allowed to jaywalk or litter. If you think about feeding the pigeons, think again! You could receive a fine for doing so.

Lots of Wildlife

Singapore is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. While humans make up a large bulk of the population, there are plenty of beautiful creatures that call Singapore home too. This includes the raffles’ banded langur, which is a small, endangered monkey that can only be found in the country’s Central Catchment Nature Reserve. Around the southern islands of Singapore, you can find endangered sea turtles lurking about too.

Get Used to Using Public Transport

If you’re planning to move to Singapore, you may not think twice about buying a car. However, the process may be a little trickier than you are used to. To start, it isn’t as cheap as in other countries. Even if you’re able to afford it, you will have to pay the government for a COE (certificate of entitlement), which can end up costing the same amount as the car! You’ll find many people use public transport instead. Their public transport is clean, cheap, and heavily reliable. In fact, a 20-minute delay can make the newspapers! 

Expat life can be exciting, refreshing and enriching. There aren’t many places that capture this formula better than Singapore. Whether you’re making the move to Singapore alone, with a partner, or as a family unit, getting to know the country and its culture better before jetting off will help you prepare and get ready for your fresh exciting new chapter of life.

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