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Singapore similar to Hong Kong?

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luvnyc
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Singapore similar to Hong Kong?

Post by luvnyc » Tue, 15 Jul 2008 12:27 am

Hi there ...

Me and the husby are most likely on our way to Singapore before year end. We have already done the expat thing in Hong Kong (2005 & 2006) and had the good fortune to be able to travel quite often to Singapore.

Granted my perspective of Singapore is one of hotels and shopping, but at least I know something about where I am moving too and having done the expat thing already, I feel I know what to expect.

However, after reviewing a lot of the information on this site, I get the feeling many of you feel that the lifestyle in Singapore is similar to that of Hong Kong? Is that really the case?

I always thought Singapore was a bit slower paced in terms of crowds, and nightlife, and number of tourists, etc. and much more healthier - especially because of very little pollution. And this is very important to us. The Singapore expat lifestyle I know is different for each individual and really comes down to what you yourself make of it. But if it is at all like the typical Hong Kong expat lifestyle, then this becomes an issue.

We left Hong Kong after two years because I got very sick from the pollution - so much so, I was hospitalized with major lung infections three times during the course of the two years we were there. I know I won't have these issues in Singapore, which I am looking forward too. But we also left because we couldn't handle or fit in to the lifestyle there. The going out in Wan Chai or Lan Kwai Fong every single night was not our idea of fun. Yes we like to bar hop and go to clubs and all - but not every single night. That type of lifestyle got very tedious after a while and we found it hard to maintain friendships that really only were based on going out drinking.

Also, we felt that the expat community in Hong Kong tended to be quite small even with so many expats there- everyone seemed to know your business whether you like it or not.

This just may have been our experience - Hong Kong itself is a great country and we did have a lot of good times but in the end, the weather/pollution and the nightlife just were not our cupt of tea.

Some honest advice - is the Singapore expat lifestyle really the same as in Hong Kong? We are getting some great perks - so I know I will have a nice place to live and will be able to go shopping and travel and all that - just like Hong Kong. But if the expat lifestyle is as many of you say, no different than in Hong Kong, we may have to rethink our approach to this opportunity.

Many thanks for your candid advice!!

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durain
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Post by durain » Tue, 15 Jul 2008 3:27 am

i have worked and lived in HK before (and the far east, western and eastern europe). i dont think it is the same as singapore. that's the nature of each countries, they all got it's uniqueness. is china same as taiwan? is US same as canada? is italy same as san marino?

i cant think of a country that i have worked and lived that has an "expat" lifestyle. maybe in rhodesia 10-20 years ago??? :wink:

so i just go with the flow and blend in with the locals in the host country i am in. that's my 2 cents worth anyway. :)

luvnyc
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Post by luvnyc » Tue, 15 Jul 2008 3:34 am

Thanks for the advice. Just what I gathered from a few other posters while digging through the various threads is that a lot of them feel no difference other than the obvious (weather).


Hmmm .... no more 'typical' expat lifestyle?! :P

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ScoobyDoes
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Re: Singapore similar to Hong Kong?

Post by ScoobyDoes » Tue, 15 Jul 2008 10:49 am

luvnyc wrote: I always thought Singapore was a bit slower paced in terms of crowds, and nightlife, and number of tourists, etc. and much more healthier - especially because of very little pollution.

Over all i think this is actually a fair representation.

Gathered by your trips to WanChai and LKF you'd be in the Mid-Levels/Central type environment in HK and Singapore is definately a bit slower and a lot healthier than that. There is more space too.

I was in HK for 8-yrs until 2003 but lived in Sai Kung instead and even that part of HK living is a lot different from what you experienced on the Island. Expat life in HK is different for everybody as well ;)

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micknlea
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Post by micknlea » Tue, 15 Jul 2008 3:20 pm

We have lived in both as well, and find Singapore a lot quieter, however it is like that if you want it here. We had a way quieter expat lifestyle than you in HK (bit like ScoobyDoes). It is what you make of it.

The weather is better here for those with health issues, just watch out for the haze periods which come along in Sept/Oct some years it can be quite bad, others nothing at all. Certainly nothing along the lines of the long term stuff in HK.
"My husband said it was him or the cat...I miss him sometimes." - Unknown

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