[Updated Apr 2017]
Singapore is widely known to be an expensive city. In fact, a 2015 study cities it to be the most expensive city in the world. Yes, over Switzerland. Here’s how I navigate nomading in Singapore.
I have family that I stay with when in Singapore, but if I didn’t, as with most cities I’d recommend Airbnb or colive.co. Get $40 off your first Airbnb stay here. Some hip and central neighbourhoods include Tiong Bahru, Novena, and Payar Lebar. Some other resources include these Facebook Groups: FindYourRoomInSG and Flat & Flatmates in Singapore.
Public transit (busses and MRTs) is great in Singapore. The fare is by distance, and most trips would not cost you more than $1-2 USD. The roads are not bicycle-friendly, and the intense heat and humidity makes it unpleasant and challenging to do too much walking.
If you’re living in the East, head to East Coast Park to walk, run, or cycle.
Coffee Bean and Starbucks’ wifi tend to make you re-login every half an hour.
In 2016, The Hub gave me a choice between a free week or month pass. Now it seems like they only offer a free day, but you should call or drop by to confirm. They have 2 central locations – HUB@CUPPAGE is by Somerset MRT, along Orchard Road, and HUB@PRINCEP is near to Bugis.
The Hive has “Try Out Tuesdays”, though what’s not advertised is that you can try it for a max of 3 times. The have a beautiful location with a rooftop deck, are located around the corner from hip Hongkong St, and across the street from Clarke Quay MRT.
I like the library@orchard or the National Library in Bugis. The latter can be so incredibly cold on the 5th floor, so I switch it up with the outdoors Hans Cafe on the ground floor. It’s also a good spot for a coffee break, but note that they don’t have power outlets.
For networking events and the like, check The List.
- Local food. It can be found everywhere: hawker centres, food courts in malls.. and the standard is pretty consistent. Some of my favourite dishes are laksa, chicken rice, nasi lemak, stingray + kangkong, hokkien mee, char kway teow.
- If you’re working from any of the places above on Orchard Road, here’s what to eat on Orchard Road for under $6.
- Have a Singapore Sling at Raffles Hotel, where it was invented.
- Have high tea at Fullerton Hotel.
- Gardens by the Bay. I didn’t quite like the indoor Cloud Forest, but I loved the Skyway. Both were in Hitman: Agent 47. The Supertrees have a great, free light show timed to music everyday at 7.45 and 8.45pm.
- While at the Gardens, I guess you have to check out Marina Bay Sands that’s across the street. It’s an “integrated resort” i.e. a casino, hotel, and several shops and restaurants by Las Vegas Sands. Complete with a copy of Vegas’ Venice canals, it’s most famous for its infinity pool at the top. Grab a drink from one of the restaurant/bars at the top instead of paying S$23 to go to the Observation Deck.
- Visit National Gallery, an integration of the former Supreme Court and City Hall buildings. Visit for the architecture, for the art, and for excellent Peranakan cuisine at National Kitchen by Violent Oon (reservations recommended).
- Stroll and/or shop along Orchard Road. If you’re there from November, they put up extravagant Christmas lights.
- Wander through Little India. Eat roti prata, get henna.
Cover photo credit: Samantha Fu