Expats in Singapore - are you happy?

Discuss about life in Singapore. Ask about cost of living, housing, travel, etiquette & lifestyle. Share experience & advice with Singaporeans & expat staying in Singapore.
Post Reply
Kareena
Member
Member
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun, 08 Jun 2008 5:15 pm

Post by Kareena » Mon, 03 Nov 2008 10:14 pm

well depends ...if u have the "expat" package ...fabulous for you...but if you dont (like me)...tough...esp with kids. its just too expensive. we never had money problems before and now we are...throw in a very evil landlord to boot. :P

jesse.armand
Member
Member
Posts: 40
Joined: Sat, 08 Nov 2008 5:03 am
Contact:

Post by jesse.armand » Mon, 10 Nov 2008 2:34 am

Kareena wrote:well depends ...if u have the "expat" package ...fabulous for you...but if you dont (like me)...tough...esp with kids. its just too expensive. we never had money problems before and now we are...throw in a very evil landlord to boot. :P
What is an "expat" package actually ?

Did you mean that "expat package" is for expats from countries with higher currency exchange rate than SGD ?

Answers to your questions, from the perspective of me who came from a country which is economically worse than Singapore.

Are you glad you moved there?

Well, as I need to look for a better career as a software engineer, better income, and better standard of living, I'm glad.

Plus, I'm young and single.

Do you think you will stay there permanently, or at some point you will have had enough and move back home?

I can't say that I would be staying permanently, but moving back home would be very difficult for me :-).

The only option for me is moving to a better place than Singapore :-).


Have you made new friends and have a good social life?

Probably not, I think about my work, career, and money too much.
Those who have better money, usually will have better social life.

Are there some things that you can't do / can't get like you could at home and really miss them?


Can't think of anything specific.

User avatar
pakjohn
Chatter
Chatter
Posts: 353
Joined: Mon, 29 Sep 2008 10:46 am
Location: Jamaica

Post by pakjohn » Mon, 10 Nov 2008 9:16 am

Are you glad you moved there?
Pakjohn

User avatar
sundaymorningstaple
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 39564
Joined: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 1:26 pm
Answers: 10
Location: Retired on the Little Red Dot

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 10 Nov 2008 9:28 am

Kareena wrote:well depends ...if u have the "expat" package ...fabulous for you...but if you dont (like me)...tough...esp with kids. its just too expensive. we never had money problems before and now we are...throw in a very evil landlord to boot. :P
Kareena,

I would have to ask......

Did you do your homework before moving here? Facts and data on Singapore are readily available on the internet as you know. If you just came here on the odd chance of finding something then you have none to blame but yourself. When negotiating your package, were you blinded by the words "Singapore" like it was the holy grail or something? Noone forced your or your spouse to sign on the dotted line...........
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

User avatar
pakjohn
Chatter
Chatter
Posts: 353
Joined: Mon, 29 Sep 2008 10:46 am
Location: Jamaica

Post by pakjohn » Mon, 10 Nov 2008 9:53 am

sorry for previous incomplete post... strange jumping around thing this optical mouse does...

I'm happy I moved here... but don't deny the challenges of my situation. Male trailing spouse, no kids, no job, no friends. First time in 30 years without a job is a huge adjustment. Having my wife be the breadwinner is an adjustment as well, but happy to oblige her the chance to pursue her dream.

The good people of Singapore have their quirks, they seem to equal mine, so I actually like the difference. The one thing that gets on my nerves is the success of guerilla marketing here, possessions have to be branded, new, and costly, or so it seems.

If you're employed, coming here is easy and rewarding. If you have a lot of free time and don't care to shop or eat, it can be sterile and lonely.

Personally, I've taken a shot at some of the outings here and attempted to make some personal connections in other ways with little success. I get by with working out, learning tennis, and reading. I think it would be easier to make friends if I played golf or liked pubbing, but not likely to adopt either at my age. I've offered help at several charities and volunteer organizations but they seem to want females, a few even suggested if I really wanted to help I'd leave money as they don't need my physical help.

My life at home was working long hours seven days a week.. (Although, always made a point to fish once a month) I do miss working, a lot. I miss opening the garage door and smelling the faint traces of last weeks fishing trip on the boat, grass clippings on the mower and leather from the motorcycle seat. But most of all I miss hearing the car door slam in the drive way and seeing my two year old granddaughter squealing for me.

I appreciate Singapore and the opportunties given my wife.. I'm thankful and will enjoy the remainder of my time here, these adjustments are normal and I don't let them get me down. My advice to you is to make the move, whether you end up loving it or not, you'll benefit from the experience.
Pakjohn

User avatar
maneo
Reporter
Reporter
Posts: 751
Joined: Sat, 15 Mar 2008 2:46 pm
Location: Tropical cosmopolitan island

Post by maneo » Tue, 11 Nov 2008 8:12 am

^ PakJohn -- Welcome to Singapore.

With your fishing and boating experience, maybe you should check out one of the 2 "yacht" clubs (perhaps SMS could chip in here).

There are also small boats that people charter to go out to the small islands.


I also followed my wife here (twice), but I came in with jobs waiting, so can't help much with house-husband experience.

What kind of engineering were you doing?

User avatar
pakjohn
Chatter
Chatter
Posts: 353
Joined: Mon, 29 Sep 2008 10:46 am
Location: Jamaica

Post by pakjohn » Tue, 11 Nov 2008 11:51 am

Thanks for the suggestions.. not really into boating past the point of getting me to the fish. :)
I worked for a food manufacturing company for over 20 years, they even let me work in Indonesia long enough to get my retirement. Could have stayed with that company if I were able to live in Indo... but if I wanted to be away from my wife I would have stayed in the U.S. I was regional Maintenance and Engineering manager.
Pakjohn

User avatar
sundaymorningstaple
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 39564
Joined: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 1:26 pm
Answers: 10
Location: Retired on the Little Red Dot

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Tue, 11 Nov 2008 12:18 pm

pakjohn,

Not sure what kind of fishing you are into, but if it's big game fishing the guy you want to catch up with on this board is our resident canuck, Barczar (not for his partying however). He is an avid Sport Fisherman (Sailfish) and recently had a fantastic trip where he landed 20 of those suckers in 2 days!

sms
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

User avatar
pakjohn
Chatter
Chatter
Posts: 353
Joined: Mon, 29 Sep 2008 10:46 am
Location: Jamaica

Post by pakjohn » Tue, 11 Nov 2008 1:44 pm

Now you're talkin! Thanks SMS. I did go sail fishing up at Kuala Rompin and caught 2, released 2. I'll sure ask for some pointers from him.


You said in another post you're ex farmer, from the U.S.? Same here, dairy mostly but row crops too. Miss the farm, not the farming. :)
Pakjohn

bluenose
Chatter
Chatter
Posts: 207
Joined: Wed, 09 Jul 2008 12:12 pm

Post by bluenose » Wed, 12 Nov 2008 12:00 pm

I have been here with my family for nearly 2 years now and am on an expat package, which is the sole reason keeping me here, sad but true.
I earn a good salary, we pay for very little, live in a fairly safe place, have the chance to see new countries, meet new people.
If I was on local contract I am afraid there is nothing here that would make me stay as I probably could not afford to do much here.
I miss my motorbikes and friends at home and the countryside in Scotland is breathtaking, especially on a frosty morning :D
We have a house in Scotland and I never sold before I came here because....I am going back and one thing is for sure; I will have made the most of my Singapore experience.

User avatar
sundaymorningstaple
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 39564
Joined: Thu, 11 Nov 2004 1:26 pm
Answers: 10
Location: Retired on the Little Red Dot

Post by sundaymorningstaple » Wed, 12 Nov 2008 12:58 pm

pakjohn wrote:Now you're talkin! Thanks SMS. I did go sail fishing up at Kuala Rompin and caught 2, released 2. I'll sure ask for some pointers from him.


You said in another post you're ex farmer, from the U.S.? Same here, dairy mostly but row crops too. Miss the farm, not the farming. :)
Pakjohn,

Spend the better part of my childhood on a dairy farm! I agree with your last sentiment 100%. Never could teach them Holsteins not to eat on the weekends! That gettin' up at 3:30 to milk 'em 7 days a week and before school was the pits.

Deer huntin's good where my farm is now. (Eastern Shore of Maryland) Little bitty farm of 220 acres but with about half a kilometer of deepwater on one side and hardtop road on two other sides. I don't farm it but lease out the tillable acreage & hunting rights.

sms
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

Light
Member
Member
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu, 14 Apr 2005 11:38 am

Are we happy as expats in Singapore?

Post by Light » Mon, 24 Nov 2008 10:51 pm

Are expats who have moved to Singapore happy with their decision?
- Yes, we are (my family and I, that is).

Are you glad you moved there?
- Yes, we are glad to have moved here instead of Hong Kong, Shanghai or any other major city in Asia.

Do you think you will stay there permanently, or at some point you will
have had enough and move back home?
- Permanent? probably not, but who knows...

Have you made new friends and have a good social life?
- There are various of groups of people living in Singapore all over the places. It's not hard to find your own group that you can enjoy the social life together, as long as you are willing to open up as well.

Are there some things that you can't do / can't get like you could at home and really miss them?
- Yes. Playing with snow, watching the autumn leaves colors, cheap golf courses (in Michigan, USA), outdoor barbecue without getting cooked by the sun, a plenty of open space in public areas like shopping mall and grocery shops (Singapore tends to be a bit too crowded everywhere), watching USA college football/basketball games and tournaments, HD TVs beyond testing National Geographics channel, faster internet, ...the list can be quite long if you think about it.

However, there are also just as long of a list for the things that you can enjoy here that you can't back at hometown such as proximity to beautiful and affordable resort areas like Phuket, Bali, Cebu,..., English Premier League Football programs, wonderful swimming pools in many of your and your friends' condominiums, Hawker Centers, Chili Crabs, lively night scenes, diverse foods and cultures, lots and lots of green colors everywhere, ... you get the picture. It's really having the glass half full mentality that will help you enjoy this place as well as any other place!

The most common complaint I hear from some people is that Singapore is too small. I think you have many wonderful places around Singapore that you can explore if you just make the effort, to deal with that issue. Then, you won't think Singapore is too small. Even if you live in a big place like USA, you can still spend most of your time in just one town that you live in, unless you make the effort to travel around. It's really up to you...and yes, to a degree on the "expat" package that you get from your company as well to have better financial freedom to do what you want to do a little more easily.

User avatar
maneo
Reporter
Reporter
Posts: 751
Joined: Sat, 15 Mar 2008 2:46 pm
Location: Tropical cosmopolitan island

Post by maneo » Wed, 26 Nov 2008 9:06 am

Well said.

eaton7
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu, 27 Nov 2008 5:34 pm

Post by eaton7 » Thu, 27 Nov 2008 5:45 pm

Are expats who have moved to Singapore happy with their decision?
Yes I like it here!

Are you glad you moved there?
Definitely!

Do you think you will stay there permanently, or at some point you will
have had enough and move back home?
I am not sure - my contract here is just for a couple of years, but you never know.....

Have you made new friends and have a good social life?
I have lots of friends here, especially from the place I work. As I came here on my own I had to make friends here in the first place which however was easier than I had thought.

Are there some things that you can't do / can't get like you could at home and really miss them?
I am also from the US and as the culture there is completely different there are definitely many things that I miss from time to time. But there are other wonderful things here that I would have never been able to experience or get to know in the US.

:-)

Kareena
Member
Member
Posts: 22
Joined: Sun, 08 Jun 2008 5:15 pm

Post by Kareena » Wed, 21 Jan 2009 12:35 pm

sundaymorningstaple- where are you from?....i know you're the moderater and everything but i find your way of writing quite smug and condescending - just being honest here...are u an american -caucasian?
this is what i gather from your comments...you guys just rule the world don't you...i bet George Bush is your role model...lol.

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “Staying, Living in Singapore”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests