Life On The Red Dot

Singapore may be small, but it is big on what it has to offer. With a total area of just 693 km2, Singapore is a cultural melting pot of Chinese, Malay, Indian, Eurasians and new immigrants. This healthy mix of exchanges ensures that there is something for everyone, be it food, entertainment or social events.

Weather and Climate

Located just 1 degree north of the equator, Singapore does not have seasons as in temperate countries. It enjoys an equatorial climate that is characterised by high humidity and hot weather all year round. Rainfall, almost an everyday phenomenon, refreshes the island and provides respite from the sun.

Average temperature is between 25°C and 31°C. April is the warmest month, January the coolest and November the wettest.

The Singapore Botanic Gardens is the only tropical garden to be inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

Photo by Calvin Teo.


Accommodation costs is dependent on location and personal preferences. The nearer the accommodation is to the city, the costlier it would be.

Students can opt to stay in a hostel that may cost between SGD2,000 – SGD3,000 a month (inclusive of food, utility bills, tuition, etc.). Or rent a room in a HDB flat from SGD700 – SGD800 per month, not inclusive of food.

Night shot of HDB flats


Food is varied and relatively affordable in Singapore. Food from food centres in shopping malls costs approximately SGD6 – SGD8. Neighbourhood food centres can offer food at a price as low as SGD2.50. Budget at least SGD560 a month for food expenses.

Varieties of hawker food from maxwell Food Centre.

Photo by Danny Santos.


The Singapore public transport system is one of the most affordable in the world. A one-way average fare, bus or MRT (Mass Rapid Transit), costs approximately SGD1.60. A bus and MRT combined fares will cost an average SGD100 — SGD150/month for daily commute to and from school.

The Bus, MRT, LRT and taxi system make up the public transport system in Singapore.

Photo by Calvin Teo


The health-care system in Singapore follows stringent government-mandated guidelines for transparency, excellence, safety and cleanliness. Depending on clinics or hospitals, a typical consultation fee at a general practitioner is SGD50 while blood test and x-ray will cost around SGD50 — SGD80. Specialists at private institutions usually charge between SGD75 — SGD125 for a consultation. Hospitalisation charges vary depending on the type of ward chosen.

National University Hospital