About one year ago, I decided to take the plunge and leave my life behind in NYC to become an expat in Singapore. Prior to this move, I had lived my entire life in the northeast of the US and had never stepped foot inside Singapore. In fact, I had never even stopped foot anywhere inside in Asia.
Moving halfway across the world is an intimdating challenge for anyone. How could your possibly know whether you’ll like it or not? Or whether the move will eventually be a beneficial one?
The reality is that you’ll never have the answers to these questions before the move. Especially if you’ve never visited before, the move is going to feel uncomfortable.
But with all that being said, here are 5 reasons why I have found Singapore to be a paradise for expats:
English (sort of)
English is an official language of Singapore and generally everyone that you would expect to interact with will speak English. The street signs are also all in English.
However, if you’re speaking to locals, be warned that the local accent here can be thick. Singlish, as they call it here, can be quite difficult for foreigners to understand.
Hundreds of thousands of expats already know about the secret of Singapore so they’re all already here. And because they’re already here and there’s so many of them, you’ll be able to instantly find a community to fit right in.
Each and every single one of them has gone through the trouble of leaving their home country and going somewhere new. So they know the difficulties that brings. And are expectionally friendly to newcomers because of that.
We may all disagree on what the top growth areas of the world are. But for sure, they are not what we consider the “western world”. But whatever those top growth areas may be, Southeast Asia is definitely near the top of that list.
With all that economic growth potential comes career growth potential. The work is truly transformation here, helping people get access to transportation, e-commerce, reliable food for the first time in their lives. And you can get to be a part of that journey.
There are over a dozen incredibly diverse countries within a few hours of flying from Singapore. You have your beautiful beaches like Bali. You have your party spots like Bangkok.
And the prices are incredibly. Most flights can be found for less than $300 RT SGD. Given the relative strength of SGD to other currencies in this area, you can live a much more lavish lifestyle when traveling than you otherwise would in any other part of the world.
Modern society and infrastructure.
Society and the infrastrucutre in Singapore is set up to promote modernity and efficiency. There are endless examples, but let me give a few.
You can actually get anywhere from anywhere else using public transportation, which is comfortable, reliable, and cheap.
The tax code is so simple (side note: tax rates are also very low) that you’ll spend less than five minutes filing your taxes every year.
The buildings look like they were built in the 21st century (because they actually were). There’s no crumbling sidewalks, hole in ceilings, 14-story walk-ups..
Living and experiencing all that life has to offer is about having more of those “why the hell not?” moments. So what are you waiting for?