Singapore has become even more expensive for expatriates to live in


fotoudavid

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Singapore has become even more expensive for expatriates to live in, climbing from ninth spot in Asia to No. 8. -- ST PHOTO: ASHLEIGH SIM

OVER the past six months, Singapore has become even more expensive for expatriates to live in, climbing from ninth spot in Asia to No. 8, said the latest cost of living survey from ECA International.

Rising prices and the strengthening of the Singapore dollar against major currencies propelled Singapore in the cost of living stakes from 79th position globally to 42nd over the past year.

That means it is more expensive for expatriates to live in Singapore than Central London which is ranked 50th worldwide, but not New York, which came in at No.39, based on ECA's latest twice-yearly survey, released on Thursday.

However, it is not all doom and gloom. ECA International regional director for Asia Lee Quane said the rise in Singapore's cost of living is a double-edged sword.

'For companies bringing senior talent into Singapore, the cost of an assignment will increase as higher allowances are required to maintain employees' purchasing power. On the other hand, companies sending employees out of Singapore can apply lower cost of living allowances and still provide sufficient remuneration to maintain a good standard of living.'

The difference between the cost of living in Singapore and that of Hong Kong, the sixth most expensive city in Asia, is also rapidly narrowing, he noted. Two years ago there was a 15 per cent gap in the cost of living between Hong Kong and Singapore. This gap fell to 7 per cent a year ago and now stands at just 2 per cent.

http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Singapore/Story/STIStory_609771.html
 

night86mare

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i find it very hard to believe that singapore costs more than central london for expats.
 

Leong23

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#3
Just have my early lunch, got rice, sotong, veg, egg and a cup of milk tea.
Total cost: S$3.90 which is less than £2.
 

#4
actually it's how u live that decides how expensive it is... if expats live like locals, rent HDB, take bus, eat at coffee shops, i dun think its expensive.... and i see many are already doing it... i can see many expats at my area already...
 

zero o

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If i am not mistaken, the calculation is based on a "basket of needs of the expatriates". This will include housing, education, transportation, medical and other components.

If u look at high end housing, rentals are in the region of $7k to $20k or even higher depending on size. An executive saloon is also not cheap .. 5, E and A6 all come in around $200k.

When u see "expats" in HDB estates, most of these guys are typically on local terms .. ie they dont have expat perks like housing allowance etc

My 2 cents guys :):)
 

Feb 4, 2008
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i find it very hard to believe that singapore costs more than central london for expats.
My brit colleague says singapore more expensive than london. Here sandwich, wine, western restaurants, car, kit kat, prime beef, cheese, milk, cereals are all more expensive than london. Ang mo will always prefer ang mo food. Not like us can eat chai tao kway for breakfast - $2.50
 

Feb 4, 2008
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If i am not mistaken, the calculation is based on a "basket of needs of the expatriates". This will include housing, education, transportation, medical and other components.

If u look at high end housing, rentals are in the region of $7k to $20k or even higher depending on size. An executive saloon is also not cheap .. 5, E and A6 all come in around $200k.

When u see "expats" in HDB estates, most of these guys are typically on local terms .. ie they dont have expat perks like housing allowance etc

My 2 cents guys :):)
No need look high end. Even the mid range condos are more expensive than places like london. When i was studying there a few years ago I paid about 1.3k pounds rent / mth for a 2 bedroom condo (comes with pool, gym) in central london (postcode start with WC). Now the 2 bedroom condos in Singapore near town is more than that price.
 

night86mare

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My brit colleague says singapore more expensive than london. Here sandwich, wine, western restaurants, car, kit kat, prime beef, cheese, milk, cereals are all more expensive than london. Ang mo will always prefer ang mo food. Not like us can eat chai tao kway for breakfast - $2.50
i think it's not fair to assume that expats are all ang mo.

but yes, agreed that a lot of the ang mo things in singapore would cost more than they could in london.
 

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night86mare

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If i am not mistaken, the calculation is based on a "basket of needs of the expatriates". This will include housing, education, transportation, medical and other components.

If u look at high end housing, rentals are in the region of $7k to $20k or even higher depending on size. An executive saloon is also not cheap .. 5, E and A6 all come in around $200k.

When u see "expats" in HDB estates, most of these guys are typically on local terms .. ie they dont have expat perks like housing allowance etc

My 2 cents guys :):)
definition of "expat":

Expats - An expatriate (in abbreviated form, expat) is a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country and culture other than that of the person's upbringing or legal residence. The word comes from the Latin term expatriātus from ' ("out of") and ' the ablative case of '''' ("country, fatherland").

this would mean that the term can also apply to my friends working in london for british companies. they don't seem to have any housing or car allowance.

you mean this study is using the "elite group of expats"? :bsmilie:
 

night86mare

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That's because you live with your parents. :bsmilie: :bsmilie:
i am nonetheless, well aware of the cost of rentals in singapore, electricity bills, internet bills and water bills. all these have been taken into account. for the most part, i handle my own meals.

is there anything else that expats need to know when they don't live with their parents? :)
 

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Deyeno

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#13
From my perspective from living here for over 20years, after I exported myself from NZ.

Singapore is as expensive as you want to make it. You want to live like an expat, then yes it will get expensive, you want to fit in and learn about a new culture, then eat local.

Compared to NZ, yes schooling, housing(buy or rent), cars, are 3 to 3 times more expensive, food depending on what you eat, or where you buy it from is up to you.

It really depends on your lifestyle and what you are accustomed to to.

Cheers ....
:)
 

zero o

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definition of "expat":

Expats - An expatriate (in abbreviated form, expat) is a person temporarily or permanently residing in a country and culture other than that of the person's upbringing or legal residence. The word comes from the Latin term expatriātus from ' ("out of") and ' the ablative case of '''' ("country, fatherland").

this would mean that the term can also apply to my friends working in london for british companies. they don't seem to have any housing or car allowance.

you mean this study is using the "elite group of expats"? :bsmilie:

The definition of expat can vary depends on who is using it and in what context. But my general understanding is that when the term expat is used, it generally means a foreigner with perks. For foreigners without the perks of housing allowance etc, the term "local terms" is used to differentiate and distinguish.
 

night86mare

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The definition of expat can vary depends on who is using it and in what context. But my general understanding is that when the term expat is used, it generally means a foreigner with perks. For foreigners without the perks of housing allowance etc, the term "local terms" is used to differentiate and distinguish.
i guess so - then if that's the case, and your definition is indeed accurate in the context of the study.... then as the commoner on the street, this doesn't say much to me. the trouble is that certain happy people will take this out of context, and paint it as a representation of living costs - even when it is essentially a representation of living costs when you want to "live it up" to a certain extent.
 

zero o

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i guess so - then if that's the case, and your definition is indeed accurate in the context of the study.... then as the commoner on the street, this doesn't say much to me. the trouble is that certain happy people will take this out of context, and paint it as a representation of living costs - even when it is essentially a representation of living costs when you want to "live it up" to a certain extent.
Depending on their agenda, people will be happy to take whatever studies and survey out there and manipulate it such that it suits their argument. You are also right in that many people want to "live it up like the Jones'" when they are not in the income bracket of the Jones' - and then complain about cost of living.
 

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