Singapore is one of Southeast Asia’s gem. A fascinating city where the past meets the future. It is in every bit modern as it is grounded in tradition and Asian beauty. No visit to the region is complete without seeing this truly magnificent city for yourself.
So you’ve done your research and looked up tips for traveling to Singapore and learned as much as you can about the city. You might have even looked up accommodations and found some of the best boutique Hotels in Singapore. You’ve also planned which places to visit and even which food places to try. The last thing to do is to pack your bags and you’re all set. But what things exactly do you pack? No worries, we created an ultimate packing list for Singapore for intrepid travelers like you!
Before you go
These aren’t “packable” per se but these things are also great things to “bring” with you.
a) Passport validity and Visa
This is a no-brainer but because of that people actually overlook this tiny detail. Before you even book your flight, check your passport’s validity first and apply for a renewal if need be. Most western countries can enter Singapore visa-free.
To check whether you require a visa to travel to Singapore or know more about Singapore visa applications, head on over to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority website.
b) Travel insurance
Though Singapore is one of the safest places to be in the world, it is still good practice to apply for travel insurance because you never know what life throws at you. Travel still has its risks even in “safe” countries so preparing for these unforeseen events is a good thing.
One of the recommended travel insurance will be The True Traveller as they offer insurance worldwide. For more information, please visit: https://www.truetraveller.com/
c) Emergency contact and numbers
Having emergency numbers handy can be lifesavers both literally and figuratively. Here are some emergency hotline numbers to take note of:
Service Tel. No.
Emergency Ambulance and Fire Service: 995
Police emergency: 999
Police hotline: 1800 255 0000
VisitSingapore Tourist Hotline 1800 736 2000 (Toll-free in Singapore)
+65 6736 2000 (From Overseas)
d) "Must-Have" Travel Apps in your phone
Here are 4 Travel Apps that we recommend you to download for your trip to Singapore:
- iChangi App
You will be able to receive real-rime updates on flight status and gate changes. There is also recommendations on places to eat, drink, shop and explore at Singapore Changi Airport. Download app here.
Grab is the biggest player in the ride-hailing scene here in Singapore and there are multiple vehicles to choose from an economical to a premium car to 6-seater vehicle and even taxi. Download app here.
- Visit Singapore
The Visit Singapore app is a "MUST-HAVE" for all type of traveller visiting Singapore. In this app, you will be able to find currency converter, a guide to free Wifi spots and a list of hotline in case of any emergency. Download app here.
This is detailed offline maps of the whole world. You can navigate from one place to another without the need of internet connection. Download here.
All other travel to Singapore guides and other online resources will also be your best friends so must sure you download them before your trip!
First things first. Here are items that should always be in your packing list.
Although most establishments accept major credit cards, cash is still the preferred choice for smaller businesses like hawkers for example. Fortunately, Due to being a major financial hub in the region, Singapore has many money exchange services in and around the city.
One of the recommended Money Changer will be Arcade Money Changers which is located at The Arcade, #01-18, 11 Collyer Quay. It is about 15 minutes walk to The Singapore River. Best rates for: USD, GBP, MYR, EUR, THB, JPY, TWD. Over at The Arcade, there are also few money changers stall that offer good rates too! Do check them out!
Here are the current exchange rates of some currencies at the time of writing:
Currency Rate in SGD
A good travel bag is the foundation of good packing. This, of course, is up to your preference but generally, you want your travel bag to be sturdy, lightweight, and with as much space as possible. There are a ton of choices out there but recently, the most popular choice is the travel backpack.
Travel backpacks are designed to have the durability of hiking backpacks while being handy in the urban setting. They can be opened entirely just like a suitcase and usually have a ton of compartments and pockets inside. Depending on capacity, they can even fit up to two weeks worth of clothes and other stuff.
If you have a Flight Layover in Singapore, there is a Baggage Storage place located at all Terminal at Singapore Changi Airport. Provided by Smarte Carte, this payable service is available 24 hours, daily.
Please note that all bags or items that you decide to leave with us need to be inspected as part of our security requirements. To know more, head over to this website here: Baggage Storage
c) First-aid kit
Travel does have its fair share of risks. And although Singapore has access to top-notch health care services, it is still a great idea to prepare for some situations. Having even a basic kit on you can be a lifesaver. Some of the things you would want in your kit is a few bandages, antiseptics, and some over the counter medicine like painkillers and anti-allergies. You can customize it however you like but it doesn’t have to have everything. Just a few handy common items are enough.
Although toiletries are ubiquitous in Singapore, having a few key items with you can be a lifesaver. As a tropical country, the Sun can be quite punishing on some days so having sunscreen is a good idea. A good place to pick up toiletries and other essentials at bargain prices is People’s Park Complex, which is located at Chinatown. This colourful ethnic quarter is a destination you won't want to miss when visiting Singapore and you can pick up many other unique souvenirs on the way as well.
As a tropical country, Singapore will be quite humid and hot for most of the year. Because of this, the number one piece of advice for travel to Singapore is to pick lightweight and breathable materials. Singapore doesn’t have a strict dress code so people can get away with wearing shorts and skirts. Having a hat handy too will help deal with the heat while you stroll about in the city. If you plan to dine in one of Singapore’s fine dining restaurants, be sure to pack a smart outfit.
But with this said, packing a nice warm sweater is something you should do too. Malls and movie houses tend to put their air conditioning at full blast especially during hot days. You wouldn’t want to be shivering your pants off every time you get indoors. The monsoon season brings quite cold nights too so a cotton or wool pullover or a light jacket will keep you warm and cozy.
The city is best explored on foot so footwear is something you should invest in. Having a good comfortable pair of sneakers will make your experience a lot more enjoyable. Flipflops are an option too if you like but sneakers are more versatile and can go almost anywhere. If you plan on hiking nearby trails then lightweight hiking shoes are a great option too.
Though limited, there are still a handful of places to swim in Singapore so you might want to pack a few swimwears. Though dress codes are quite relaxed, it is still best to bring not too revealing outfits.
While you can certainly travel sans electronic gadgets, having a few with you can tremendously increase your experience. Here are a few items you can get to enhance your packing list.
It’s always a bummer when your gadgets run out of juice when you are in the middle of exploring. Thankfully, powerbanks are here to make sure you can keep exploring without worries that your devices run out of power. When getting one, make sure it can hold enough power without being too bulky and that it supports your devices.
b) Universal travel adaptor
Not all power sockets are created equal. Your devices might not be compatible with Singapore’s Type G sockets—the same ones found in the UK. To fix this, you can pick up a universal travel adaptor. These handy devices can be used in many places around the world not just in Singapore so having one is a great investment. Pro tip: before plugging in your devices, be sure to check if it’s compatible with the country’s mains voltage.
c) Pocket wifi
Staying connected while on the go is certainly a challenge for every traveler. There is free public wifi available however not all of Singapore is covered. This is where portable pocket wifis come in handy. If you don’t plan to get one yourself, you can rent one at Changi Airport. The Klook pocket wifi bundle comes with its own travel pouch, the travel charger and cable, and the pocket wifi itself. Head on over to Klook for more details.
Lastly, no travel is complete without getting a few snaps for the gram. Though phones these days come with powerful cameras that are more than capable of doing the job, having a camera can save your phone’s battery for more important tasks. You don’t need a fancy camera either. Simple point and shoot nowadays can get amazing picture quality and, although not as good as professional gear, it’s more than enough for social media.
If you plan on buying consumer electronics and other gadgets in Singapore, the best places to go is Funan Mall. The newly renovated mall is located in the Civic District precinct. There are various electronic and technology stores such as Nikon, Lenovo, iStudio and the best part is they are all under one roof.
Other gear you might need
Here are a few other items you might want to consider bringing that didn’t quite fit the categories above. You can probably go just fine without these but it will surely make your trip a lot more convenient.
When exploring the city, you would want to bring a few items with you but lugging along your heavy travel backpack is certainly not a great experience. This is where daypacks come in. Daypacks can be small backpacks or sling bags that can be packed with your other luggage. They are quite handy especially if you bring along this next item.
b) Water bottle
In case it wasn’t clear yet, Singapore can get quite hot. That is why staying hydrated is absolutely important lest you get severely dehydrated. Buying bottled water every time you are thirsty is not only inconvenient but also not very good for the environment. A one-litre bottle is enough for most people and some are even collapsable to save as much space when not in use.
c) Umbrella and other rain gear
If it’s not hot out in Singapore, it’s probably going to rain. Having a small travel umbrella or poncho / rain jacket can save you from getting drenched because of sudden showers. Likewise, keep your backpack dry too with the help of a water repellent rain cover. Water-resistant windbreakers are awesome too especially during the monsoon season.
It is tempting to pack as much stuff as you can when planning for a trip. But, whatever it is you plan to pack, careful planning is the key to get the most out of the things that you bring with you.
During your trip to Singapore, we would recommend you to drop by Singapore Visitors Centre to get more information about Singapore, purchase various attractions tickets, tours and even souvenirs!
And if you prefer to explore Singapore with a professional tour guide, Monster Day Tours is at your service. We offer tours that fit to all of your budget (be it our private or free walking tours)! Check out our Singapore tours here!