Your Perfect Backpack for Singapore
Shifting from one home to another is such a headache, isn’t it? So much to pack, unpack, carry along, leave behind and a lot of chaos. If this is what happens when you move between homes, imagine what a hassle moving to a new country could be; a country you have no idea about. To start with, you have no idea about their culture, the do’s and don’ts in the country, the metro system and this list could go on. There are a bunch of items you need to carry along with you if you plan to stay there longer than if you’re just travelling. As an exchange student, you get to spend at the least 4 months, long enough for you to be aware of the stuff you need to carry along with you. Well, if you happen to be a full-time student or an intern, this article serves you too.
To start with, I’m short of words to describe what Singapore, the Lion City, is to me. It’s my second home. I have spent close to three years in this beautiful, sunny (and very very humid) country, and yet, it takes me back by surprise with new things to do and to explore. Singapore, smaller than even one of the states in India, is a hub for development and progress in every way possible; be it the super well connected metro system that can take you from one end of the country to another in just 2 hours, or the local food which can leave you sweating (thanks to the tons of chilies), or the stunning architecture ranging from the world famous Marina Bay Sands to the beautiful streets of the Arab lane.
Don’t just a few words about Singapore give you chills? Then imagine being able to come to Singapore for your exchange semester, internship or just coming here for your studies. If you have been lucky enough to have the opportunity to step into this wonderful country, give this article a read and get answers to all your questions.
“So, what all should I pack?” “Do I need to carry .
I’m glad you have asked, and here’s the perfectly drafted list of things to carry when coming to Singapore.
Must Have Things
ID It goes without saying that your Passport is the most important document when entering any country. Once you’re in Singapore, as a student, you’ll be issued a students’ pass. I strongly advise you to carry it with you anywhere you go. Singapore is a safe country, so you don’t need to worry about losing your cards (given, you aren’t careless about your things). Additionally, students’ pass entails you to certain discounts and perks, so keep an eye on such offers and watch out guys.
Since Singapore is a sunny country and it has similar weather year-round, it’s really essential to carry a sunscreen. If you’re shifting from a little colder place, sunscreen is going to be your life savior. I would suggest a sunscreen with SPF 30+ to SPF 50. Make sure you buy one in lotion consistency to avoid dryness and irritation to skin.
U Umbrella/raincoat/rain cover
Well, the weather in Singapore is much more volatile and unpredictable than even the stock market. It could just be super sunny one minute and with the blink of an eye it could start raining. With that kind of weather, it’s advisable to carry an umbrella or a raincoat to avoid getting wet and regretting going out. If you are unable to carry one in your luggage, do not worry; head to Daiso, Miniso, 7-eleven or any hypermarket to get an umbrella for affordable and reasonable prices.
Singapore uses type G plugs. So, if you’re travelling from the Middle East or Europe, this won’t be of concern to you. But if you’re travelling from the US, India or any other country that doesn’t use the type G sockets, I urge you to carry an adapter with you so that you can charge your phone and not get lost.
Whether you’re travelling, going to a party or just sitting in your house, one of the most discussed topics, whether be among friends or family, is clothing. But, when it comes to suggesting clothing for Singapore, there are three different type of clothes you need to carry.
First, your most comfortable collection of cotton clothes. For the guys, I would recommend cotton t-shirts, shirts, pants and shorts. But girls, get some pajamas, super comfy dresses, skirts and pants. Also, do carry a pair of flip-flops. These will be best suited when you’re going for classes or casually chilling around the city.
Now coming to the second type. If you’re planning to get an Instagrammable picture with the Marina Bay, or at other touristy locations, put on your good clothes (comfy clothing still recommended). These could also be the ones you put on for the night life as well. Singapore night life is amazing and if you’re going to go clubbing, then do get a pair of heels (for the girls) and a nice outfit.
Moving on to the third, swimwear. Singapore has many beaches all across the island and it’s surrounded by so many other countries that are worth travelling to, that swimwear is a must carry.
Additionally, do carry a light, thin jacket as it gets really chilly in the malls, grocery stores, cinema halls or sometimes the weather could just be surprisingly pleasant.
Other things to carry
Cash/Card: Once you land in Singapore, you’ll need some money to buy a metro card (if you’re planning to travel by metro) or to get home by cab. You can either pay by your credit/debit cards or you can just get some Singaporean dollars in cash. DO NOT exchange currency in the airport as there’s a lot of commission and you just end up losing a good amount of money. I would suggest getting up to 500 SGD exchanged in your home country for immediate usage and converting the rest once you’re settled in Singapore.
Medications: If you’re using antibiotics or any kind of other medicines prescribed to you in your home country, I strongly urge you to carry those medicines with you. Antibiotics and many other medicines aren’t available over the counter in Singapore, so it would be best to carry medicines that will last for your stay.
Camera: This isn’t a must pack. But I would say if you’re the photographer kind of person and are passionate about it, do get your camera because Singapore has a lot to offer and you can surely capture some amazing shots. But otherwise, smartphones have cameras with good enough pixels that lessen you the pain of carrying a camera.
Water bottle: If you’re the kind that buys bottled water, it’s totally fine. But if you like to use the multi-use water bottles, here’s the good news- the tap water in Singapore is said to be pure and safe for drinking. Given the weather, it’s important to keep yourself hydrated. So, go keep your favorite water bottle right away in that luggage.
Accessories: A toiletry bag with lip balm, anti-perspirant, perfume, a mini sunscreen, lotion, sanitary napkin and a travel pillow could come in handy when travelling to a nearby country. You could also save some space for your souvenir shopping rather than bringing back a big tube of sunscreen.
*No Chewing gums: REMEMBER THIS. Singapore has banned consumption of chewing gums. Chewing gums aren’t sold in Singapore at all and if you’re caught having one in public you’ll be fined.
This was the list of all the necessary and a few miscellaneous items to carry when coming to Singapore. If you want to know more about life in Singapore, how to settle in the new country and other related stuff, stay tuned in for our next article and do visit us again.