November 14, 2011

BUDGET: Singapore

Tiny Singapore consistently ranks as one of the wealthiest countries in the world and has earned the title of being on the expensive side for shoestring travelers. So in committing with our meager travel reserves fund, we have been meticulous in listing down expenses for the leg of this “Amazing Race­ish” trip. Yes, this is an exact fussy listing, down to the last cent.

This budget is per person with the overnight accommodations shared between two people. Travel was September 13­-15 (2 days/2 nights) this year and Singaporean Dollar to Philippine Peso is roughly pegged at Php35.

*Roundtrip sleeper train from KL P1,250
**Overnight hostel accommodation P1,000
***SG Sightseeing pass for 2 days on a Hop on Hop off tour bus P1,155 (S$ 33)
****Meals P1,833 (S$ 52.37)
*****Inland transportation costs (Bus, MRT, 1 cab ride) P749 (S$ 21.40)
2 Spare batteries (for Nikon D90 & PanasonicLX3) P2,275 (S$65)
Souvenirs P700 (S$10)
TOTAL Php 8,962.00

*Airfare is not included as we flew in from the Philippines to Malaysia first and just took the train from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore.  READ HERE for more info on how to travel by train from Malaysia to SG.

**Double air-­conditioned room with the horrors of shared bathroom. A case of getting exactly what you pay for. We’re not hoity-­toitties but we don't aim to be the cheapest travelers either. We’re just regular working class who saves part of our income to afford this vice and be comfortable and I guess we have to work our asses more to avoid dirt­ cheap (literally and figuratively) hostels in the future.

As we took the sleeper train from KL (September 13), we arrived in Singapore at 7 AM (of September 14) and left midnight the next day (September 15), it saved us 2 nights worth of hotel accommodations. It was an experience in itself and we would love to go on longer slow train travels again, hopefully in the future.

*** To know more about Duck and Hippo Tours' Hop-On Hop-Off: READ HERE

****Eating is always a big part of our travels and always gets the big chunk out of our reserves but that is fine as stuffing our faces makes us truly happy and completes the experience. On this trip though, we ate mostly at the food courts inside the malls and once in Mickey D's at the train station. If you are on a tight budget, eating in Singapore doesn’t need to be expensive. The hawker stalls and food markets scattered in the city offers good and delicious cheap eats.

To give you an idea of the prices, a half liter of bottled water in Watson costs S$1.40, discounted at S$2 for two bottles; a Hainanese chicken rice meal with soup starts at S$4; bus rides at S$1; MRT rides at S$2.20.

*****1 cab ride – acted like TOURONS (tourist morons) who didn’t keep tab of the tour bus’ timetable and we were left behind. Had to flag down a cab to keep up with the schedule to the tune of a shameful S$13.20 or a tumataginting na Php 462. Ugh!

How to take the train from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore
City Sightseeing with Duck and Hippo Tours
A DIY walking tour of Singapore's Chinatown.
Sri Mariamman, the oldest yet very impressive Hindu temple in Singapore
Buddha Tooth Relic Temple and Museum
Little India: spice scented streets dominated by sari and turban clad locals and Bollywood pop songs
Kampong Glam, a quarter that exudes an Arabian feel and flair
Singapore night shots


  1. so true, kaloka ang taxi sa SG. may night differential, meron pang rush hour rate. the line "horror of shared bathroom" hehe

  2. this is very helpful for my transit next month. thanks!

  3. Good work here!

    That Singapore is vastly underrated has more to do, I think, with how expensive it can get over its real merits. While the cost of everyday is panic-inducing, it's chockful of wonders, this place (the museums, concerts at Theatres on the Bay, gustatory offerings, shopping havens, green spaces, street art, etc.) and the discovery is worth every cent spent.

    I'm always a little staggered by declarations that Singapore is underwhelming/sterile/without a personality. It's a fab place, you just have to pay a little more for the experience. :) :) :) And I love how our kababayans go out of their way to give you tips/good deals on just about everything.


  4. yey! thanks for this post :) my family and i will be going again to singapore. would bookmark this so we don't incur additional expenses :)

  5. Reminds me of my own "shared bathroom horrors" Mostly from an Eastern European dude scaring the shi-- almost quite literally at 3am.

    And SG hostels arent the cheapest on the SEA lot too, ugh.

    Noted on the taxi night differential ekek. SG-bound kami ng happy meal by May! :D

  6. Hi Chyng! Isang kainan na sana yong cab fare na yon, ugh! Haha! Buti na lang, ma chicka si Manong Driver, we'll take the experience as mingling with the local na lang:-D

  7. Hi Rain and Gladys! Enjoy Singapore, we're jealous!:-D

  8. HI Janna! Very well said! Maybe those who find SG underwhelming leans on the novelty of other counties in SEA's chaotic appeal, but we personally love how organized and clean SG is! The rich diversity of culture and the extensive array of things to do, eat, shop and what not - as you very well put it - you just have to pay a little more for it:-D Thanks for dropping by!

  9. Hi Eileen! I've had the quickest showers of my life in the hostel that shall not be named!:-D But overall we still love Singapore, you and your happy meal will surely have a blast!

  10. Thanks for this! Magiging helpful talaga to. :D And I have to agree w/ u guys, di baleng malaki ang gastos sa food, basta always busog!!! nomnomnom

  11. Yes, food is always part of the experience!:-D You're welcome, happy to share!

  12. nice..below 10k..Sana eto lang budget ko when we went there.hehe

  13. I know, right! We're so proud of ourselves hehe!:-D


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