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Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats
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    Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats
    Extracted from The Straits Times

    LONDON - SINGAPORE has entered the top 10 list of Mercer's 2011 cost of living survey, moving up two spots to be ranked the 8th most expensive city for expatriates. Angola's capital, Luanda, has retained the unenviable title of the world's most expensive city for expatriates, narrowly edging out Tokyo, according to the survey published on Tuesday.

    At the other end of the scale, the Mercer group's study named the Pakistani port Karachi as the least expensive city, with living around three times cheaper than in Luanda.

    New entries in the top 10 list of the costliest cities in the world for expatriates are Singapore (8), up from 11, and Sao Paolo (10), which has jumped 11 places since the 2010 ranking.

    The most expensive city in Asia is Tokyo (2), followed by Osaka (6). Singapore (8) has joined the list of the world's top 10 most expensive cities in the world due to the strengthening of the Singapore Dollar and the substantial increase in housing costs.

    It is followed by Hong Kong (9) whose ranking dropped by one position due to the devaluation of the Hong Kong Dollar which is pegged to the US Dollar, even though there was considerable increase in housing costs.

    During the past year, the US Dollar has devalued against most Asian currencies. In particular, the Singapore Dollar and Australian Dollar appreciated considerably, not only against the US Dollar, but against other currencies such as the Euro and British Pound. -- AFP

    Background:
    The Mercer cost of living survey covers 214 cities across five continents and measures the comparative cost of over 200 items in each location, including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment. It is the world's most comprehensive cost of living survey and is designed to help multinational companies and governments determine compensation allowances for their expatriate employees. New York is used as the base city and all cities are compared against New York. Currency movements are measured against the US dollar. The cost of housing - often the biggest expense for expatriates - plays an important part in determining where cities are ranked.

    Source
    http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking...ry_689750.html

    Pls: Does anyone knows Thailand ranks at which place?
    Franklin D. Roosevelt - The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

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    Marie (12-07-11)

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Bangkok 88th

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    Jasonkoh82 (14-07-11)

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    I'm confused, paragraph 1 says Singapore has moved up two places. Paragraph 3 says it went from 11th to 8th...

    David
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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Yea, Sydney ranks 14, more expensive than London at position 18, Probably because of housing costs, AU$1,200,000 for something ready for demolition is just not worth it, especially when you consider Australia has more land per head of population than any other country on earth.

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Quote Originally Posted by David_Loves_Ubonwan View Post
    I'm confused, paragraph 1 says Singapore has moved up two places. Paragraph 3 says it went from 11th to 8th...

    David
    You are right. I just noticed this these past few days...

    Quote Originally Posted by paul_au View Post
    Yea, Sydney ranks 14, more expensive than London at position 18, Probably because of housing costs, AU$1,200,000 for something ready for demolition is just not worth it, especially when you consider Australia has more land per head of population than any other country on earth.
    Can't believe my very own eyes. Sydney ranks at 14 and yet Singapore as shown as a little red dot on the world map...ranks at No 8
    Franklin D. Roosevelt - The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    As a tourist, I find food in Singapore not that really expensive. Actually, you can also find reasonably-priced meals that suit your low budget in many areas. As I like to stay on Orchard Road, I am near food courts around the vicinity serving a huge variety of cuisines -Chinese, Malay, Thai, Japanese, Korean, Iranian, Indian, Pakistani, etc. at reasonable prices--perhaps student rates? - as I see many students frequent these eateries.

    I guess it's just a matter of knowing where to eat.
    Last edited by Marie; 14-07-11 at 02:00 PM.

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Speaking about "not that really expensive", nowadays the prices of food are gradually getting on increase. Yesterday even I brought my favourite soya bean drink had also increased by 20cents, let alone vegetarian foodie...
    Franklin D. Roosevelt - The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    why am i not $$$urpri$$ed..??!
    $$$ingapore!!!!

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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Quote Originally Posted by alvinkhoo View Post
    why am i not $$$urpri$$ed..??!
    $$$ingapore!!!!
    Yes, Alvin, $$$Spore 5555

    For the info of forumers who are not SGians, I think for SG, the most expensive for the expats is definitely the housing. A 4-room HDB flat when rented out whole usually cost about S$2000 to $2500 per month. And this is just the public flats. I don't think expats want to live in public flats if they can help it - I assume they will prefer (maybe more used to it?) private houses with their more accustomed garden or a private condo, which definitely costs more. In comparison, my ex housemate recently rented a whole house (not old house) with three bedrooms and a small garden (which I assume is the kind of environment expats are more used to back home) for AUD$350 per week, including unlimited internet access. This is quite the norm it seems, rather than an exception, from what I see off notices. This works out to be AUD350 X 1.3 (the approximate currency conversion rate) X 4 weeks = S$1820. Therefore, one gets more bang for one's buck compared to renting housing in SG. We are not even trying to quote them farang prices; we have no choice cos that's what we pay - I heard two Aussie friends say a flat with two bedrooms costs about AUD$50,000 (about S$65,000) but the same thing (new flat) in SG currently costs about S$200,000. A resale flat easily costs S$300,000 and more, depending on location.

    Owning a car in SG is also very much more costly. From what I see in Oz (at least, where I am), an about 8-year old Toyota or something costs about AUD8000, working out to be S$10,400. Don't quite think this is possible to procure in SG, cos haven't ever heard of anyone buying it at that price in SG, plus SGians in Oz who do drive often remark on the huge cost differences. The same housemate bought a brand new car (a nice, rather big one, I don't recall the brand) for AUD20,000+. Again, in SG, usually no where near. Then again, cos I don't have a licence and don't drive, maybe I am just being ignorant. SGians, I will love to hear how much the current price for cars is in SG and whether I misunderstand anything, please advise.

    For expats who are stereotypically used to living in a landed house and owning a car, living in SG can mean so much out of their pockets for paying for things which seemingly cost much less back home.

    But luckily, as what Marie has accurately observed, eating out in SG is very much cheaper. Seriously much cheaper. For example, a plate of the humble Malay noodle dish, Mee Goreng, normally costs about S$3 to $4 (almost every coffeeshop, hawker centre and foodcourt's price) in SG. In the part of Oz where I am, I always have to pay foodcourt price of AUD$9.90 (S$12.90), or restaurant price of AUD12.90 (S$16.80). Same humble ingredients as back home in SG; no extra fanciful ingredients LOL. My European housemate whose friends opt to do their student exchange in SG told her that they have not been cooking at all for three months straight, cos eating out (if it's hawker centres, coffeeshops or foodcourts) is comparably much, much cheaper than in their European hometown (and a country town at that). Eating out in SG at these places will usually see an average price of about S$2.50 to S$5 (a rice or noodle main dish).

    So if the expat does not mind taking our efficient public transport and living with most of us in HDBs, SG is still very affordable

    P.S. : Of course, prices for housing, food, etc varies in Aus from state to state or maybe even suburb to suburb, so the price I mentioned above may be different from what others see in their lives. But generally, these prices are apparently in the norm in where I am, rather than being on either end of the extremes.
    Last edited by yy; 15-07-11 at 12:10 AM. Reason: add info
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    Re: Singapore ranked 8th most expensive city for expats

    Quote Originally Posted by paul_au View Post
    Yea, Sydney ranks 14, more expensive than London at position 18, Probably because of housing costs, AU$1,200,000 for something ready for demolition is just not worth it, especially when you consider Australia has more land per head of population than any other country on earth.
    Actually I am really surprised that SG is above Sydney, cos I heard very often that the housing is so expensive in Sydney. Wonder what these rankings are based on.
    Sleep, little one, close your eyes, mother will sing you a lullaby... Sleep in a jewel cradle, sleep, mother will rock you.
    If you don't sleep the midges will go for your eyes and pollen will fall on the cradle....Sleep, close your eyes...
    - Isaan folksong, from "The Price of a Life" (Onkom, 1997)

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