The situation of expatriates in Singapore

Singapore is an increasingly popular place for our French-speaking expatriates.

Singapore is one of the favorite destinations for expats in Asia. This city-state located on an island at the tip of The Peninsula of Malaysia is known worldwide as synonymous with economic success. Its very good quality infrastructure, its health facilities, its tourist attractions, its local food… all these elements make Singapore, one of the first destination choices for expats.

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Singapore: The city coveted by expats

Why do many expats choose the city of Singapore?

Accommodation facilities in Singapore

There are three types of accommodation in Singapore. We find there :

– Apartments: There are two types of apartments which are HBD accommodation and condominiums. HBDs are a great place to stay if your budget is tight. They are located near supermarkets, clinics, schools or shopping centers. The condominiums have equipment such as swimming pools, gyms, etc. The monthly rent is between 2000 and 20,000 SGD (1,200 and 12,500 euros).

– The studio: In Singapore, a studio has the bedroom separated from the living room and the kitchen. A studio in the city center will cost you around 600 SGD (or 350 euros) per month.

– Villas: There are two main types of villas. Traditional villas and colonial villas. However, foreigners do not have the right to purchase these villas (except at Santosa Cove) as they are owned by the Singaporean state.

If you want to become a homeowner in Singapore, visit the Singapore Land Authority website

Singapore’s varied food

In Singapore, the diversity of cuisines is at the rendezvous. There is something for every taste. The food courts offer a wide choice of flavors: local, Indian, Malaysian or “western”. A meal can cost you between 3 and 10 SGD (or between 2 and 6 euros).

Efficient public transport

They are particularly developed and allow you to move anywhere and anytime. In addition to this facility, the price remains very affordable.

A very good quality school system

The school system is of very good quality. According to Hsbc Expat Explorer, 47% of expats rate local schools as great. 62% of them consider that the education received in Singapore is of better quality than in their country of origin. In addition, state schools are much cheaper than international schools (3,500 SGD versus 15,000 SGD).

A stable country experiencing economic growth

Singapore’s greatest asset is its stability. Whether politically or financially, the country has changed little or nothing. The laws and rules are relatively clear and above all respected. Singapore is immune to the earthquakes, typhoons, tsunamis and other disasters that regularly strike Asia. In other words, there is very little insecurity.

Which visa for expatriates in Singapore?

The “Employment Pass” is increasingly difficult to obtain. It is a work permit aimed at company executives, managers and specialized and graduate professionals. Indeed, Singapore has decided to reduce its dependence on foreign labor. The Employment Pass is therefore reserved for expatriates earning at least 4,500 SGD (or 2,800 euros).

To obtain the Dependent Pass for his family, a minimum of 6,000 SGD (or 3,700 euros) is required. This is the best visa for a foreigner coming to work in Singapore. In fact, since November 2020, employees posted to Singapore can no longer benefit from a residence permit for members of their family. An exception for nationals of countries that have signed a free trade agreement with Singapore, such as Australia or India. In addition, these posted workers will no longer be allowed to stay on site, even for a limited period, once their work visa has expired.

Why is it always more difficult for expats to go to Singapore?

For many years the government encouraged the recruitment of foreign labor due to its very low birth rate. This has caused a big increase in the costs of living, especially the prices of real estate, transport and medical, and created competition against local employees.
Singapore, despite being one of the top destinations for expats, no longer seems to be as welcoming to them.

Do you need health insurance for Singapore?

The medical cost in Singapore is high. People are well looked after, but technological developments and the general increase in the cost of living in Singapore are pushing up medical prices. Living in Singapore without medical insurance is strongly discouraged. Expats in Singapore should purchase expat health insurance in Singapore to avoid any surprises when receiving the bill. In some cases, the employer will be able to insure his employees and if not, it’s up to everyone to find their contract. Expatriate insurance will be particularly suitable for several reasons:

  • Worldwide coverage including your home country
  • Excellent coverage limits with regard to medical costs
  • Often more affordable price for GoldExpat insurance better positioned than many local insurers in Singapore
  • Coverage during work assignments or vacations outside Singapore, important for a geographically limited country

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