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New York to Singapore
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Los Angeles to Singapore
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Chicago to Singapore
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San Francisco to Singapore
Oct 18­ – ­Oct 26
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Seattle to Singapore
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Atlanta to Singapore
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Miami to Singapore
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Singapore at a Glance

  • Country: The Republic of Singapore
  • Time zone: UTC + 8 hours
  • Currency: Singapore Dollar (S$ / SGP)
  • Language: English (main language), Malay, Chinese, Tamil
  • Power & standard plug type: 230 V, 50 Hz, Type C (Europlug), Type G (British standard), Type M (South African standard)
  • Weekend days: Saturday, Sunday

When is the best time to book air tickets to Singapore?

Singapore is the only island-city-country on the planet and the second most popular travel destination in the Asia-Pacific region after Bangkok. But unlike the affordable Thai’s capital, the city-state is far from being wallet friendly. On the contrary, it rounds up the top three most expensive destinations for tourists, with only Dubai and Paris ahead. Here are some tricks to cut expenses, at least a little bit.

Steer clear of holidays and popular events

Singapore doesn’t have a precise high season. Mass tourist invasions usually occur during festivals and popular annual events and drive prices up.

Crowds of Asian guests rush to Singapore mid-January to late February, depending on the dates of Chinese New Year which change annually. Other major events attracting visitors from around the world are the Great Singapore Sale (late June through July) and Formula 1 Grand Prix (the second half of September).

Be ready to fly on weekdays

A bit of flexibility with travel dates can save you a significant sum. The rule of thumb is that Tuesdays and Wednesdays tend to be the cheapest days, while Fridays and Sundays come with the highest prices on international flights.

Book flights in advance

For the best fares, reserve tickets 4 to 8 weeks ahead of the departure date. And don’t leave it to the last minute: You will regret paying the extra price for the same seat.

What should you know about Singapore airports?

Singapore has two civil airports: the famous Changi Airport, which has been ranked the world’s best airport since 2013, and the little-known Seletar Airport accommodating private jets and turboprops. Ten miles (16 km) away from each other, there is no public transport connecting them.

Both airports serve international routes only, simply because Singapore is too small for domestic flights. There are plans to launch low-cost internal air transportation to the downtown area and the resort island of Sentosa.

Singapore Changi Airport (SIN)

Annually, the world’s most awarded airport caters to over 65 million passengers, flying to and from 400 cities in nearly 100 countries. More than 100 airlines operate out of Changi, while four carriers — namely, full-service Singapore Airlines and SilkAir as well as low-cost Jetstar Asia Airlines and Scoot — use it as a hub.

Designed to handle a total capacity of 85 million visitors a year, Changi Airport has three runways and four main passenger terminals, with the fifth one scheduled for completion in the 2030s. Three of four terminals are linked directly to the newly built entertainment complex Jewel Changi, boasting an indoor rainforest and the world’s tallest indoor waterfall.

How to get between terminals

Terminals 1, 2, and 3 create a single, U-shaped complex. You can easily move between them on foot enjoying inter-terminal travelators. The walk will take 10-15 minutes at the max. Another option is going by a free Skytrain that runs every 4 minutes from 5:00 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. The trip lasts 5 minutes or less.

The newest Terminal 4 stands apart and lacks the Skytrain connection. Instead, it is served by a free shuttle bus that carries passengers to and from Terminal 2 arrival hall 24/7. The bus departs every 10-20 minutes depending on the time of day while the transfer takes 10 minutes.

How to get from Changi to the Downtown Core

Changi Airport is just some 12 miles (20 km) away from the Downtown Core, Singapore’s historical and commercial center. So, it won’t take you long to reach the very heart of the city-state.

By Mass Rapid Transit (MRT)
Transfer time - 30 minutes+
Trip cost - approx. 2 SGP (around 1.50 USD)

Changi Airport MRT station is located in the basement of Terminal 2. To find it, just follow the ‘Train to the City’ signs. The metro is open from 5:30 a.m. to midnight, with trains running every 7 to 13 minutes depending on the time of day. The main inconvenience is that you have to change lines at Tarah Merah Station as there is no direct line between Changi and the city center.

By bus
Transfer time - 90 minutes+
Trip cost - approx. 2 SGP (around 1.5 USD)

Public buses depart from all terminals, making many stops en route, so you can get quite close to your exact destination. The fare depends on the distance, and the ride to central area will cost you no more than 2 SGP. Keep in mind, that bus drivers don’t give change. You have to put the exact sum of money into the farebox or use a contactless EZ-link card accepted by all Singapore public transportation.

You can buy an EZ-link card right at the airport — in the 7 Eleven store (Terminal 1 and 2), at Changi MRT Station (Terminal 2 basement), or from one of 11 Changi Recommends booths located in all four terminals. Note, that you have to visit the Changi Recommends official website first and pay for your EZ-ticket online. Only then will the booth give you a physical card.

By taxi
Transfer time - 30 minutes+
Trip cost - from 20 SGP (around 15 USD)

You can hire a licensed metered cab at taxi stands in the arrival halls of each terminal. In addition to the fare, you have to pay the airport surcharge that starts at 3 SGP (around 2 USD) and depends on the time of day.

Seletar Airport (XSP)

Currently, the only airline operating regular flights to Seletar is Malaysia’s Firefly. The carrier uses turboprops — cost-efficient planes with propellers, capable of landing at small airports with short runways — to fly to Subang Airport, formerly main airport of Kuala Lumpur.

Yet, Seletar anticipates welcoming new airlines and new routes in the coming years. Its new two-story passenger terminal has the capacity to handle 700,000 travelers a year. Unfortunately, the short runway doesn’t allow for receiving large aircraft, such as the popular Boeing 737.

How to get from Seletar to the Downtown Core

Seletar is the same distance from downtown as Changi Airport, around 12 miles (20 km). However, the airport’s connection to the city leaves much to be desired.

By bus
Transfer time - 60 minutes+
Trip cost - approx. 2 SGP (around 1.50 USD)

Seletar is served only by the 102 bus route that connects the airport with some other parts of Singapore and runs past three metro stations. Buses pick up passengers at the terminal every 10-15 minutes. The line operates from 5:45 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

By taxi
Transfer time - 30 minutes+
Trip cost - from 20 SGP (around 15 USD)

You can find a taxi stand just outside the departure hall. Apart from metered taxi fares, the airport has a 3 SGP (around 2 USD) surcharge.

What is the best way to get around Singapore?

According to recent estimates, Singapore is the second best public transport system in the world, trailing only another Asian Tiger — Hong Kong. Given the fact that traffic jams often cause delays on roads, the fastest and most convenient way to zip around the city are the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) and Light Rapid Transit (LRT) systems. The MRT/LRT network is really extensive, with lines reaching almost any key city attraction.

The MRT fare depends on distance and payment method. You will save 0.5-0.7 SGD (0.35-0.50 USD) on each trip if paying by a contactless EZ-link Card instead of standard paper tickets.

The cheapest paper ticket costs 1.50 SGP (1.1 USD) and covers a distance of up to 1.8 miles (around 3.2 km). If using the smart card, the fare for the same trip will be only 0.83 SGP (0.6 USD). What is more, EZ-link cards are accepted by buses, taxi services, hawker centers, stores, and many other places.

You can buy EZ-link card at any MRT station for 12 SGP (around 8.50 USD) or in one of numerous 7-Eleven stores for 10 SGP (around 7 USD). In both case, the price includes 5 SGP (3.50 USD) of the non-refundable card value while the rest is available for payments.

What’s the weather like in Singapore?

Whenever you visit Singapore, it gives you a very warm welcome. Located just 85 miles (around 137 km) north of the Equator, the city-state enjoys a tropical rainforest climate. Hot and rainy weather prevails in the city all year round, with temperatures ranging between 77°F and 88°F (25°C and 31 °C) and relative humidity often exceeding 90%.

Singapore has no distinct wet and dry seasons, as heavy rainfalls can occur during any month. Instead, the city experiences the following weather cycles:

  • Northeast Monsoon Season (mid-November to early March) is divided into a wet phase (December and January) with continuous showers in the afternoons and a dry phase (February and March) with relatively little rain.
  • Southeast Monsoon Season (June through September) witnesses short thunderstorms before midday.
  • Inter-monsoon periods, lasting from March to May and October to November, are characterized by moderate rains in the afternoons and early evenings.

If you aren’t a fan of cloudbursts, try to visit Singapore during comparatively dry February and March and avoid the place in November and December, which statistically bring the heaviest rainfall. For reference, the warmest month in Singapore is April and the coolest one is January.

What is the average hotel price in Singapore?

You may check into one of the backpacker hostels within walking distance from an MRT station for 15-20 USD per night. The price includes a bed in a dormitory room for 4-10 persons, dining area with a refrigerator and microwave, air-conditioning, free WiFi, and occasionally a breakfast. The main complaints about such accommodations come down to worn out mattresses, untidy and noisy rooms, leaking and smelly showers.

Single rooms at hostels start at 35 USD while a double-room will cost you no less than 50 USD. Room rates at 2-star budget hotels average 75-100 USD per night.

Mid-range hotel chains near major attractions — with high-quality bedding and on-site restaurants — charge 100-200 USD per night. A night in a luxury hotel with 4 or 5 stars will cost you roughly 300 USD.

What are the must-try dishes in Singapore?

Singaporean food mixes traditions of Chinese, Indonesian, Indian, Western, and, especially, Malay cuisine. This fusion gave birth to unique national dishes you should definitely give a try.

The number one authentic dish is chili crab listed in CNN’s World’s 50 most delicious foods. Despite the name, succulent crabs dipped in delicious tomato sauce are not that spicy. The meal is served with buns to take the edge off the seasonings and soak up the sauce.

Some other iconic foods are Hainanese chicken (pieces of steamed chicken on white rice), Singaporean laksa (thick and creamy soup with coconut milk, noodles, chicken and prawns), Hokkien mee (noodles stir-fried with eggs, prawns, squid, and slices of pork), oyster omelet, popiah (spring rolls). And, of course, no guest can resist the temptation to start the day with the traditional local breakfast — kaya toast and kopi (toast with coconut jam and creamy coffee made of caramelized Robusta beans).

The budget way to savor local dishes is to buy them from hawker centers (food courts). A bowl of nutritious laksa, a plate of chili crab, or a large portion of local noodles will cost you 3-5 USD. The price of a cup of kopi starts at 1 USD. If you want to visit one of the top-notch restaurants, dining out can easily exceed 100 USD per person.

What are the must-see places in Singapore?

A perfect way to start discovering the city is by taking a walk along the Waterfront Promenade around Marina Bay, the location of key attractions of the city-state.

Thе two-mile (3.5 km) stroll offers stunning views of the Singapore skyline and its famous landmarks such as the towers of the luxury Marina Bay Sands hotel, the giant Flyer observation wheel, the futuristic building of ArtScience Museum.

A pedestrian bridge connects the far end of the Waterfront Promenade with Merlion Park. This park is home to Singapore’s major symbol — the statue of the Merlion, the mythical creature with the body of a fish and the head of a lion.

Within a walking distance off the Merlion, you’ll find another most-visited spot, the famous Gardens by the Bay with their sci-fi supertrees, Flower Dome and Cloud Forest.

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