What Tourists to Singapore Need to Know
If you are a tourist in Singapore, we have compiled some of the information you may need in this single-page article. From clothing, currency, to transportation, this quick bite-sized guide will be handy.
If you are a tourist in Singapore, we have compiled most the information you may need in this single-page article. From clothing, currency, to transportation, this quick bite-sized guide will definitely come in handy.
How to Get Around Singapore
It is extremely easy to get around Singapore. You have a choice of going for public transport (taxi, bus, train) or private ride-sharing (Grab or Gojek)
Public transportation fares are reasonable compared to other major cities globally. You can pay in cash of course, but it would be wise to purchase stored value cards called EZ-Link cards.
What are EZ-Link cards?
EZ Link cards are smart cards used as payment mainly for buses and trains in Singapore. EZ-Link cards are available at TransitLink Ticket Offices and Concession Card Replacement Offices located at MRT stations and bus interchanges.
Upon arrival, you can head to the Changi MRT station and purchase an EZ Link card. Or, you can purchase from convenience stores such as 7-Eleven, Buzz and Cheers. Just head straight to the counter.
How much is an EZ-Link Card?
They cost S$12, with a pre-stored value of S$7 (which means the card cost itself is $5). Anyway, if you’re only staying for 3 days or less, then the Singapore Tourist Pass may be better for you. These Tourist Passes come in 1-day, 2-day and 3-day variations that offer unlimited travel on public transport services and come with a refundable card rental deposit.
Do note that the validity of the Singapore Tourist Pass is based on the operating hours of the basic public transport system.
If you FIRST use the 3-day Singapore Tourist Pass at of 8am of 1 August, the 3-day Singapore Tourist Pass will expire on 3 August at 12 midnight. So, if you FIRST use the 3-day Singapore Tourist Pass at 11:50pm of 1 August, then the 3-day Singapore Tourist Pass will still expire on 3 August at 12 midnight.
Also, the 2-day or 3-day card must be used on consecutive days. PLUS, the pass does not include premium services such as Sentosa Express, RWS8, Night Owl, NightRider, Chinatown Direct, express buses as well as other premium and niche bus services.
Air-conditioned bus stops are conveniently available island-wide and show the routes of all buses that stop there. A ride costs between S$0.92 to S$3.30, depending on the route, use of card/cash, if you’re using Express Services, and travelling distance. Buses run from about 5.30am to 12.45pm depending on the route.
MASS RAPID TRANSIT (MRT)
The MRT network of Singapore extends across these lines: North-South (red), East-West (green), North-East (purple),Circle (orange) line and Downtown line (DTL). Trains normally operate between 5.16 am and 12 midnight with extensions on the eve of public holidays, but just to be sure, check with the station for specific last train timings. Ticket prices start at S$1.10.
Taxis are highly regulated and available 24 hours. There are specific taxi stands, and if you’re staying in a hotel, you can easily ask the concierge to help hail a taxi for you. Tips are not expected in Singapore and fare charges go by the meter. The flagging rate starts at S$3.20 and an additional S$0.70 per kilometer, but of course, this depends on the type of taxi you board. There are premium cabs, limo Surcharges apply if you board a taxi during peak periods, from city areas or under other specific conditions. For bookings, extra charges apply.
If you go for a Comfort Ride via the ComfortDelGro Taxi Booking app, the minimum fare is S$6.00. If you’re travelling from Changi Airport, Limousine Cab services and Maxi Cab (5-7 seaters) are also available, starting from S$50.
The national currency accepted is the Singapore dollar which come in denominations of $2, $5, $10, $50, $100, $500, $1,000 and $10,000. Coins are $1 and 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents. If you are carrying Euros, GBP, USD or other currencies, money changes are available at the airport, or shopping malls.
However, some shops at Changi Airport do accept USD.
Here's a currency converter if you need one right now: https://www.xe.com/currencyconverter/convert/?Amount=1&From=USD&To=SGD
Singapore is normally warm and humid all year round with temperature varying from a little over 30°C (88°F) to 23°C (73.5°F). Of course, there are occasional rain showers, but don’t worry, most walkways in Singapore are covered. Umbrellas cannot be hand-carried on airplanes, so if you can check in a portable umbrella, do so. Or, you can just buy an umbrella from stores in Singapore. They’re available everywhere (even at 7-Eleven) for around S$15.
Today's 2-hour weather, courtesy of NEA: https://www.nea.gov.sg/weather#weather-forecast2hr
Wear light, breathable clothing in Singapore. There is absolutely no need to lug around your heavy boots and outerwear.
For footwear, sandals, walking or running shoes are highly recommended for long walks. Even during heavy rains, the atmosphere will not get that chilly.
You will see a lot of tourists wearing shorts. However, for fine dining, or other posh activities, etiquette dictates to wear less casual clothes. You get the point.