Hi, I’m Singaporean and moved to the city couple years a go. Been a silent reader of this forum for years and I’m going to return home soon, so perhaps I could share something valuable for expats who just got here or still live there. It’s been a decent city with its ugly sides and some ‘okay’ factor, if you know where to put your head and feet are.
- I work in retail, so covid hits us hard. And with the government been changing policies lately, we rely on online stores than offlines. Luckily I live in a condo in Summarecon where there are expat neighbours live here too, so it’s nice to have friendly face to talk to. The place is private and quite, I can still ride my bike whenever I feel to.
- Commuting can be very stressing so choose your time and which roads you’d want to go. Remembering this can be a big different between arriving on time or 2-hours late.
- Pay attention to motorcycle esp. when you are driving. They tend to zigzaging their own way and it is better to steer away from them (which quite impossible because they are dominant in volume, which is why I use online ‘ojek’ or taxi).
- The weather can be unbearable. I turn on the AC in my condo all the time, but if I have to go outside, I choose between 8-10 AM or 4-6 PM. Else, I order everything from apps (which is plenty of options).
- Not so much community nor group of expats, so to have expats as your neighbour is quite nice (though I rarely see them in purpose just to have peptalk). Why I stressed this point? Because my local next-door neighbour won’t even talk to me when we share elevator. Not sure why..
- Food is okay, but be careful with street vendors. I had unpleasant experience where it involves 12-hours in toilet. Better to prep your food yourself and the price is so much affordable in local market.
- My condo is much better upgrade compare to my last apartment (where undocumented foreigners stay; if you know, you know) and if you have pets such as cat or other small animals that don’t bark all night, it’s still acceptable.