Knowing details such as money matters, visa rules and regulations, weather information, etc., can make a big difference. This is why we’ve put together information that will help you get around with ease when in Singapore.
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Most foreigners coming into Singapore do not require a visa for entry and may be given social visit passes for up to 30 days upon their arrival in Singapore. A list of countries whose nationals require a visa to enter Singapore is available here. We also advise you to consult your local consular office for the latest information with regard to coming into Singapore. Should you require a visa, please refer to the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) website for application procedures.
The currency used in Singapore is the Singapore dollar (S$). Money changing services are available at the Singapore Changi Airport and at most shopping centres and hotels around the island. You can also access the automated teller machines (ATMs) located throughout Singapore. They accept most credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard and American Express.
Average daytime temperatures range between 26°C (79°F) and 30°C (86°F) with little variation throughout the year. It can be somewhat cooler at night. The humidity ranges between 65% and 95% so dress accordingly.
As the city is located just 137 kilometers (85 miles) north of the equator you can expect plenty of strong, brilliant sunshine. The tropical rains are brief but heavy, so pack an umbrella.
Besides air-conditioned areas such as shopping centres, restaurants, entertainment outlets and cinemas, smoking is also an offence on the SMRT (Singapore Mass Rapid Transit system), public buses, taxis and in lifts. Recently, the smoking ban has also been imposed on public eateries and within a five-metre radius from most building entrances, except for allocated smoking areas that are clearly marked with bright yellow paint. A maximum fine of S$1,000 may be imposed on first-time offenders.
Singapore has great public transportation. Be it by bus, Mass Rapid Transport (MRT) or taxicabs, getting around Singapore is very simple. Maps are easy to read and all signs in the MRT stations are in English.
- To travel by the MRT, an EZ-Link card is required. You can choose between a reloadable EZ-Link card (to be purchased from the Transitlink Ticket Office or Passenger Service Centre counters located at the MRT stations) or a single trip card (to be purchased from ticket machines). The ticket machines can also be used to reload the value of your EZ-Link card when needed.
Alternatively, you can opt for the Singapore Tourist Pass, which offers unlimited travel on the MRT system as well as on the bus networks for S$8 per day.
- Taxis: you should be able to hail a cab in most parts of Singapore. It is always best to get a cab from one of the numerous taxi stands in Singapore – hotels and shopping centre taxi stands are a sure bet.
Be aware that taxis can be hard to get during peak hours (Mon-Fri 7:00am - 9:30am and Mon-Sat 5:00pm - 8:00pm) and on rainy days (try to use the buses or MRT trains during peak hours instead). At the hotel, ask the concierge to call you a taxi. If you are out about town, calling for a taxi will cut your waiting time by 20 to 30 minutes. If you have to get to the airport during peak hours, you may wish to consider booking a taxi in advance.
The peak period surcharge is 35% add-on to the metered fare, a call booking is $3.50 from morning to 11pm, and $2.50 thereafter. Midnight surcharge is 50% of the metered fare.
The city’s major cab companies are:
- Comfort Transportation Pte Ltd / CityCab Pte Ltd: +65 6552 1111
- Premier Taxis Pte Ltd: +65 6476 8880
- Maxi Cab: +65 6535 3534
- SMRT Taxis: +65 6555 8888
To enjoy tax-free shopping in Singapore, simply look out for retailers that display the “Tax Refund” logo on their shop front and spend SG100 in a single receipt to qualify.