It’s the final day of my travel costs series in Southeast Asia. Over the past week I’ve broken down our spending in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Today I’m wrapping up the series with a quick look at how much we spent in Singapore plus a summary of our total costs in the region.
We made our way overland to Singapore by bus from Melaka, Malaysia. The total trip only took a few hours, including a stop at the border. Immigration was very straightforward and we were issued a free 30-day visa on arrival. While we were in Malaysia, we met another travel blogger who was living with his wife in Singapore. He invited us to stay a few nights in his apartment and we were so thankful for the chance to save money, especially in Singapore where accommodations can be pricey.
We stayed for 3 nights and then moved into a 6-bed mixed dorm in a hostel near Little India for an additional 2 nights. We barely got any good sleep in the hostel due to some rather rude dorm mates. Clearly they hadn’t read our post about how to be a good dorm mate.
Our days were spent exploring the various neighbourhoods in Singapore, including Chinatown, Little India, the Quays, the Central Business District, and the Colonial District.
We happened to arrive in Singapore just as the Thaipusam Festival was kicking off. This is a Hindu festival where devotees offer their suffering in exchange for a request from the Gods. They make a long pilgrimage (usually 10-20km) surrounded by their family, and fully display their devotion by carrying a large altar on their shoulders and submitting themselves to various forms of body mutilations (piercing of the skin, tongue, and cheeks).
So, once again, to break down our costs, I’ve split our spending into these categories:
- Visas: the cost to get into the country
- Accommodations: places we stayed
- Transportation: everything from buses within a country and to another country, to bicycle/motorbike rentals, to ferry rides, and subway fares
- Food: everything we ate and drank
- Sites: entrance fees to museums, temples, ruins, day trips, overnight trips, cooking courses, and even a scuba diving course
- Entertainment: seeing cultural performances, going to the movies, etc
- Laundry: laundry was available everywhere we went for very affordable prices, we really didn’t feel like washing our clothes in the sink
- Miscellaneous: all our souvenirs, massages, parcels shipped home, and toiletries
Prices are shown for two (2) people and are in Canadian Dollars, unless otherwise specified.
Singapore: 5 Days, $78.44/day ($1 CAD = $1.25 SGD)
- Visas: $0.00 (yay again!)
- Accommodation: $82.10 (we saved about $150 by staying with a friend for 3 nights)
- Transportation: $31.62
- Food: $252.73
- Sites: $0.00
- Entertainment: $14.35
- Laundry: $0.00 (we were able to do our laundry at our friend’s place)
- Misc: $11.42
- Total: $392.22
So in total we spent $392.22 for 5 days, averaging $78.44/day.
Big-Ticket Item: Nothing, Singapore has a lot of free attractions and great neighbourhoods to wander around in.
Singapore is the most expensive Southeast Asian country, however, it can still be done on a budget. Finding someone to stay with will help cut costs in a big way, but $20/night in a dorm room isn’t a huge sum either. They have an easy to use, state-of-the-art public transportation system that connects to all parts of the island, and enough hawker centers to choose from to keep your food costs low.
While we only stayed in Singapore for 5 days, it was plenty of time to check out the country and see the sights. If you’re just passing through, you probably wouldn’t need much more than that anyways.
Singapore is very multicultural, very diverse, and very modern. If you’re starting to feel a bit of burnout from roughing it in other parts of Southeast Asia, Singapore is a nice little reprieve.
Comments or questions about travel costs in Singapore? Please leave them below!