Make the most of your trip to Singapore with this guide to important information, tips and advice for visitors.
The Singapore dollar is used here and notes come in denominations of S$2, S$5, S$10, S$50, S$100, S$1,000 and S$10,000. Coins come in 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents and S$1.
You will be able to speak English to Singaporeans, most of whom are fluent in it. Many Singaporeans also speak an additional language, usually Mandarin Chinese, Malay or Tamil.
Tipping is encouraged when you experience good service, and this would be above the standard 10 percent gratuity to your bill added by some restaurants and hotels.
Getting Around Singapore
Singapore’s public transport system is fast and efficient and will whizz you to most places without fuss.
Singapore’s MRT (mass rapid transit) system is probably the fastest way to zip around the city. The extensive rail network means that most of Singapore’s key attractions are within walking distance from an MRT station.
You can buy tickets for single trips, but if you intend to use the MRT and basic bus services frequently during your visit, you can buy a Singapore Tourist Pass, a special EZ-Link stored-value card which will allow you unlimited travel for one day (S$10), two days (S$16) or three days (S$20). The cards can be bought at the TransitLink Ticket Office at the following MRT stations: Changi Airport, Orchard, Chinatown, City Hall, Raffles Place, Ang Mo Kio, HarbourFront, Bugis, Lavender and Bayfront.
Singapore’s trains and stations are accessible to wheel chair users and the visually impaired, as well as families with strollers.
Taxis are comfortable and especially handy if you want to go to places not accessible by the bus or MRT. Cabs here are metered, but there may be surcharges depending on when, where and which company’s taxi you board. To get a rough idea of the final fare, check with the driver on the surcharges and ask for a receipt at the end of the trip. You can hail a taxi by the roadside at most places, or by queuing for one at taxi stands found at most shopping malls, hotels and tourist attractions. If you wish to book a cab, you can call a common taxi booking number, 6-DIAL CAB (6342-5222), and your call will be routed to an available taxi company's call centre.
Singapore's bus system has an extensive network of routes covering most places in Singapore and is the most economical way to get around, as well as being one of the most scenic.
You can pay your bus fare using an EZ-Link stored-value card or the Singapore Tourist Pass, which you tap on the card reader located next to the driver as you board. Do remember to tap your card again, on the reader located at the rear exit, when you alight. You can also pay in cash but you need to have exact change.
Most buses in Singapore have air-conditioning - a welcome comfort in a tropical city.
Singapore is hot and humid all year-round, with temperatures usually reaching over 86°F. You should be prepared for rain at any time, which can be torrential but usually brief.