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London to Singapore - Advice please!

London to Singapore - Advice please!

Old Feb 26th 2015, 3:11 pm
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Default London to Singapore - Advice please!

Hi All!

My partner and I are considering moving to Singapore from London in the not so distant future. We are relatively young (28 and 26) and my partner has visited Singapore previously. She really likes the place, so I'm more than willing to give it a shot!

I'm in financial services and have been offered a role with a low basic salary with high commission potential. Having had numerous discussions with the firm, targets seem attainable and I have experience in a similar role in the UK. I will have a small amount of savings in the bank, if needed. They have offered flights and accommodation allowance too.

Other half is a teacher, and it looks as though she could get a fairly good wage (£40k) and accommodation paid for. She hasn't been offered a job yet, but is in the process of identifying and applying to schools.

We understand living expenses in Singapore are high, however as we both live in London we are used to paying through our noses! Appreciate that tax is lower over there too.

We are both keen to try something new and I just wanted to get peoples thoughts/advice/suggestions/tips that may help make our decision.

Thanks!
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 12:42 am
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Both of you try to get your accommodation allowances paid in cash rather than the company pays the apartment owner direct.
You can then use the cash as you like.

You'll pay tax on this whether you get paid in cash or the company pays direct.
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 3:20 am
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

I made the London Singapore move, and the change in cost of living was eye-watering! Particularly nights out... that was 20 years ago,but a trip back last year suggested things hadn't got any cheaper. In fact, I think I read somewhere that Singapore had just moved to the top of the most expensive cities list?

I'm not saying that to scare you off - I loved it. We were there 8 years, and would be back like a shot if the right offer came along.Just do your research, make sure the offer is the right one, and go out and enjoy yourselves. Lucky gits
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 11:39 am
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Ditto...ditto.

Do plenty of research. Singapore is an expensive place these days but, as ex Reg would probably point out, live as the locals and it doesn't have to be so expensive I understand.

All,the best and hope it works out.
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Thanks all for the responses so far. We have made a few enquiries re teaching jobs, but a fair few seem to have been filled already. We're going to have another look this weekend, so fingers crossed.


Are the travel costs cheap over there? I appreciate a car is extortionate/out of the question, but how does the metro and bus travel stack up against similar costs in London?

I'm also a keen sportsman so would be keen to look at potential clubs to join.

Thanks again
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 3:03 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Originally Posted by bakedbean View Post
Ditto...ditto.

Do plenty of research. Singapore is an expensive place these days but, as ex Reg would probably point out, live as the locals and it doesn't have to be so expensive I understand.
Definitely - if I went to the hawker center out the back of my apartment I could get a plate of fried noodles for a dollar, and a large bottle of (warm!) beer for $2. If I went to Boat Quay or wherever it would be at least $20 for a jug of beer. When visiting last year we fed a family of 5 on some great food in an HDB hawker for less than $30. Later on I went to meet some old friends on Emerald Hill. I was first there, ordered a pint, handed over a 20 and waited for change. I waited in vain
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Old Feb 27th 2015, 3:12 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Originally Posted by mb25 View Post
Thanks all for the responses so far. We have made a few enquiries re teaching jobs, but a fair few seem to have been filled already. We're going to have another look this weekend, so fingers crossed.


Are the travel costs cheap over there? I appreciate a car is extortionate/out of the question, but how does the metro and bus travel stack up against similar costs in London?

I'm also a keen sportsman so would be keen to look at potential clubs to join.

Thanks again
Unless it's changed drastically, I think you may find the teacher situation is pretty fluid - lots of coming and going, so slots opening up all the time. I never used the bus, but I suspect cheap. Metro costs certainly very cheap compared to London, from what I remember, as are Taxi's. It is definitely very convenient to have a car, but it is possible to live without one. Although I never did...

Clubs - lots of expats join one of the "nationality" clubs - American, British, Swiss etc. but they're not everyones cup of tea. There are also the country clubs, but if you think the cars are extortionate, you definitely won't like the fees for the CC's. We never joined a club, but never missed it. The condos tend to have and/all of the pool/tennis/squash/weight room facilities. I did join a local gym, but honestly cannot remember how much it was. We rarely played "personal" golf in Singapore - we drove over to Malaysia or got the ferry down to Indonesia for the day, which I used to love. We did play "coprporate entertainment" golf in Singapore and there are some gorgeous course for sure, but again, very pricey. We did used to play a nice little 9 holer now and then on a Friday morning before work...can't remember the name. Very hilly, pretty short, but it was only 40 or 50 bucks for 9 holes (more if you were Japanese).

Just a reminder, most of my info is from the 95-2002 era!
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Old Feb 28th 2015, 11:20 am
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Originally Posted by Yorkieabroad View Post
Later on I went to meet some old friends on Emerald Hill. I was first there, ordered a pint, handed over a 20 and waited for change. I waited in vain
Five Emerald Hill?? Whenever we went in there, always had to hassle them to bring change back
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Old Feb 28th 2015, 12:23 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Originally Posted by bakedbean View Post
Five Emerald Hill?? Whenever we went in there, always had to hassle them to bring change back
Yup, or at least that's where we started. They always had that odd system where you gave the money to the bartender ( of which there were many ) then they gave it to the cashier ( singular ) to process with the inevitable result that the busier they got, the longer it took to process the transaction. To start with, I just assumed that they were being slow, but when friend arrived, he confirmed my growing suspicion that my transaction had run its course. It was an ex-transaction. It was not resting nor pining for the fjords. It was over. Done. Finished. There would be no change.
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Old Mar 3rd 2015, 2:37 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Hi mb25,

Can I ask what job application method you use for the role in SG? Was it from an offer from your current firm or did you look elsewhere online? I'm in a sticky situation at the moment where I am also seeking opportunities in SG but I haven't had any luck in getting responses back from online applications.

I'm 25 and in the IT industry so it might be slightly different but welcome any advice/thoughts.

Thanks.
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Old Mar 3rd 2015, 3:01 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Thanks everyone for the feedback! Really useful.

Banany, I have just sent you a direct message.
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Old Mar 3rd 2015, 3:06 pm
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Default Re: London to Singapore - Advice please!

Thanks mb25 - I need to make 3 posts on the Forum before I can view messages (I joined today). I will respond when I can!
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