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Rich / Poor expats?

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Plavt
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Postby Plavt » Thu, 14 May 2009 3:33 pm

LoriW wrote: I'd say that the "average household income is about £40Kpa.


I wish.

Perhaps I have a slightly bigoted middle class point of view?


Looks like it......

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Postby LoriW » Thu, 14 May 2009 5:26 pm

Oops! :oops:

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Postby quidsin » Thu, 14 May 2009 6:20 pm

LoriW,

I would consider your options very carefully. We came here hoping to end up with more cash at the end of every month but it's not been the case. I actually earn around 50% more here than I did in the UK (1.5 yrs ago) and even though the tax is less here, you have additional expenses such as kids schooling, or more expensive things tio pay for in comparison such as condo (compared to your UK mortgage) and car costs, maid etc. All in all, I'm worse off at the end of the month than I am in the UK. The reason we're still here is for the experience and nothing else, kids absolutely love it and from a career perspective it's the right place for me to be at the moment, even though we're skint.

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Postby LoriW » Thu, 14 May 2009 8:51 pm

Quidsin, I shall be - like you on approx 50% more than I'm on now. I don't have children, I'm not planning to run a car - I already knew that was never going to be an option, a maid - just for little ol' me? Probably not - but it would be nice to have a cleaner and ironing person!

Food? I expect I'll probably live off $3 hawker centre food for breakfast lunch and dinner - just as the locals do!! At least South East Asian food is cheaper in South East Asia than in the UK!! :wink:

For a career perspective, my new position is simply amazing. It's an opportunity I wish I'd gone out looking for 20 years ago instead of 2 years ago!

I probably won't be spending so much on designer clothes as I am now - simply because factory outlets don't exist in Singapore and no way will I pay full price for anything! European clothes are a good deal more expensive there!

My hobbies/interests? Ballet classes? Cost about the same. Horses? Fast cars? Just simply not an option - neither are within the reach of mere mortals in Singapore! Going down the pub? Good wine? Yes it's more, but then again that really isn't an ENORMOUS expense!

Fingers tightly crossed and I should be able to save something!

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Postby Zeenit » Fri, 15 May 2009 8:47 am

quidsin wrote:LoriW,

I would consider your options very carefully. We came here hoping to end up with more cash at the end of every month but it's not been the case. I actually earn around 50% more here than I did in the UK (1.5 yrs ago) and even though the tax is less here, you have additional expenses such as kids schooling, or more expensive things tio pay for in comparison such as condo (compared to your UK mortgage) and car costs, maid etc. All in all, I'm worse off at the end of the month than I am in the UK. The reason we're still here is for the experience and nothing else, kids absolutely love it and from a career perspective it's the right place for me to be at the moment, even though we're skint.


Maybe you should stop shopping at Coldstorage etc and start at NTUC..... we expats too and I do get brand named goods at Fairprice. And we are better off than in the Uk even with me not working at all. I am a full time Lady whom lunches... :D

BTW: did you not do your homework before coming out and know what overheads awaited you? I did and hence we got a beautiful condo within our budget and have a good lifestyle.
And before you bite off my head.......We are based in London and Waitrose is my shop of choice along side my Organic Butchers and Cheese Shop. Our lifetstyle in SG has changed a bit due to the pool, onsite gym etc etc.
But I am enjoying SG for all the parts of it.....
But skint we not.....the taxes are low and food is cheap. Weather is too hot someday but i cant have everything.
Last edited by Zeenit on Fri, 15 May 2009 10:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby OogieBoogie » Fri, 15 May 2009 9:48 am

if you're on a tight budget, why getting a car?
Cars are so expensive here, I've even read Singapore is the most expensive place to have a car!

Besides with taxi everywhere, efficient phone booking, pretty cheap, and such a small island, i don't see any good reason to get a car. All shop deliver for free or almost free, a lot of International School have their own bus, and there's no country side you can escape to for the week end.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 15 May 2009 11:24 am

I sold my last car almost 18 years ago just after the COE system was implemented. It's rare that I miss it. If I do need one (when the rellies come over) I just rent one for the period of time that I'll require it. So much easier to use public transport or the occasional taxi. And yes, I had a 1 year old & a 6 year old when I did it. Saved a bundle, I did.

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Postby Addadude » Fri, 15 May 2009 12:54 pm

I'm with SMS and OogieBoogie. I took one look at car prices here 15 years ago and put away my driving license. A car really isn't necessary here.
"Both politicians and nappies need to be changed regularly, and for the same reasons."

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Postby LoriW » Fri, 15 May 2009 2:32 pm

Awwww guys (and gals) ......... I'm now feeling awful for Quidsin! Give him a break - if he chooses to be "skint" for his lifestyle - it's a personal choice.

In the UK, I choose to shop at Waitrose, our organic butchers/deli, I give my credit cards a good hammering every month at Yoox.com with designer clothes, and I drive (drove until monday) a group 16, 182bhp performance car! I work full time - as does my partner - I'm skint, he's loaded - he earns a bit more than me although with my new salary in singapore, our basic will be much the same but I'll be on more because of the tax!! :D However the reason why I'm skint and my partner's loaded is because he squirrels his hard earned cash away and I spend mine! (he pays the mortgage, I pay the bills so pretty much even with outgoings)

I'm going to really try hard to save while I'm in Singapore and I think that I ought to be able to! As Zeenit says
the taxes are low and food is cheap


I've chosen to not have a car - I'm used to belting around the countryside "quickly". I also live somewhere there is no public transport! Singapore has an amazing AND cheap public transport system. Taxis are CHEAP.

There's a huge saving anyway - I'm aiming to get myself another nice car on my return!

My one last BIG fling - sorry guys, is going to be next week on a pair of Louboutins! Singapore, whatever anyone says, Singapore is not the place to buy designer stuff! Yes GST is 7% (??) against our VAT of 15% but I buy all my things on Yoox - at 75% off or I have a stupid weakness for Mulberry handbags - I live 40 miles from the factory. I bought a Bayswater bag for £180 - as opposed to £600.

NTUC isn't a bad place to shop - beloved and I often sneak into the NTUC in Clementi when we're staying with relatives on holiday to buy "western" food.

A former colleague (he "retired" last year aged 50) worked in the Bahamas and in Singapore in his 30s, enabling him to return to the UK some 10 years ago and buy a Lotus elise, a one man racing dinghy and a third share in a bigger racing dinghy! AND to quit work and become a gentleman of leisure at 50!

He said to me a couple of weeks ago when we met up, "the Bahamas is great, Singapore may be the most expensive country in the world to live but it's the REAL cash cow"!!

He lived in a HDB flat at Choa Chu Kang, ran a battered old BMW, fed himself simply, didn't sail, scuba dive or do any of his hobbies for 5 years.

I think that for me, a 3 year BIG sacrifice has to be worth it.

In the UK, beloved and I bring home a GOOD combined salary, we have no children but apart from the life experience/career thing, I'm after a little cash flow injection!


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