There’s a lot of things to do in Singapore actually. But, in the most expensive city in the world, things often come with the price (literally) 😅. So, if you want to visit Singapore in a friendly budget, here are some tips and recommended spots you can visit for free based on my personal experiences 😁:
1. Merlion and surrounds
Take a mandatory photo in front of the most famous landmark in Singapore, then go for a stroll to the Cavenagh bridge. You can enjoy the view of Marina Bay, Singapore Flyer, bronze sculptures, and colorful buildings at Boat Quay, along the way. Reward yourself with a slice of traditional Singaporean ice cream when you arrived at the bridge. Just remember to choose the local brand one (not that famous red love shape brand, if you know what I mean) as it is tastier and lot cheaper 😉 . Talking from my experience, the location for local brand seller’s near Cavenagh bridge is at the other side of the river or the north bank.
2. Kampong Glam
In our first visit to Singapore three years ago, we stayed in Little India area. It was a nice location for us. But, after staying in Kampong Glam in our second visit, we would definitely choose Kampong Glam over Little India. Kampong Glam has the tranquil Sultan Mosque, Baghdad Street which is bustling with cafes and shops, Street Arts in Haji Lane, and many more. Kampong Glam is also within walking distance to Bugis Junction, Bugis Street Market, Golden Mille Food Centre and Suntec City. Just perfectly located.
I personally prefer to stay at the hotel which is near to the places I want to visit (with reasonable price of course), because it will save me a lot of money. As you may already know, public transport in Singapore is not that cheap, even if you buy the Singapore Tourist Pass or the EZ-Link Card, so walking is my preferred option. Haha. Every time the GPS shows that the location is less than 2km, I would always go with walking.
3. Public House Playground
Everybody knows that kiddos love playground. And mommy loves it because it’s free :D. So when travel with kid, it’s always a good idea to take them to the public playground. Public playgrounds in Singapore are usually located in public house areas. To see the map of all playgrounds in singapore, you can check this site. It provides information about the playground project all around Singapore. It’s actually a good option when you are running out of idea where to spend the day except to the mall.
This is the market I like the most in Singapore. Even better than Mustafa Centre in my opinion. It’s a heaven for merchandise hunter and street food lover. Explore every corner and every level of it, and you will be surprised by the choices and offers this market has. Buying in groups will also save more money as they usually sell their products in large numbers, for example a fridge magent usually costs you $3-4, but if you buy 5 or 6 magnets, you can have them for $10 only. Another tips is to compare price from one seller to another. My suggestion is to go to the shops outside the main lane area (like the one in the corner or the one that is far from the entrance) and sometimes you will get even cheaper price as they are not as busy as the main lane ones.
5. Always choose food centre, cafeteria, and canteen over restaurant, dining place and fancy cafe.
Feeling hungry after an afternoon walk? Go to food centre, cafeteria, or canteen. They provide good foods in low prices. There are some choices near Jalan Sultan where I stayed in my last visit: Golden Mile Food Centre (with plenty offers range from chicken rice and pad thai to burger and lava baguette) and the Kampong Glam Cafe, to name but a few. Also, if you go to a mall in Singapore, try to find the canteen instead of restaurant. It’s normally located in the basement area. There you will find yummy foods in friendly budget as the food stalls actually target the Mall employees instead of visitors. But don’t worry, it opens to visitors as well so it’s okay to eat there.
Singapore is claimed as the most expensive city in the world for a reason. However, it shouldn’t stop us from enjoying the most of the Lion city. You can always find tips and tricks if you try to. Read reviews, speak to locals, do like locals, are some things we can do to be able to still enjoy Singapore, even in a tight budget.