Your experience of culture shock in Singapore


Living in a foreign country implies to discover its culture, to learn and master the cultural codes.

How did you deal with that? Share with us your culture shock stories where you experienced a funny or awkward moment in Singapore.

What is your advice regarding the don'ts and what would you recommend to avoid any mistake?

Thank you in advance for sharing your stories,


Hi Christine,

I arrived 2 months ago from London (even though I'm french) and I find it so so different from anything I have experienced before:

1) i love the food and the hawker culture
2) I love the fact that there are much fewer cars than you would expect
3) I love how clean it is

but i'm still getting used to:

1) how sterile certain parts of the city feel...i find certain parks (between skyscrapers in the Marina) like they were taken from AutoCad and made just feel incredible fake
2) I still cant get used to how hard it is to get someone LEGAL to come and clean my apartment for a few is either illegal low-paid immigrants or live-in maids - I just can't understand the whole live-in maid culture in this country...never seen anything like it (not even in Dubai...)

Moderated by kenjee 6 years ago
Reason : No promotion of external links, groups or blogs on the forum please.

We have lived in Asia for 8 years and in Singapore for 4 of them. Singapore is the best place to live in  Asia hands down. The only issue I have is how impolite and rude people can be. I believe a school in manners could be a winner but maybe few would attend.

Could you please elaborate? You just made me curious about Singapore being the best place to live in and the mentality of their locals.
In which aspects would you say SG is superior to other Asian countries?

I have been living in SG for almost three weeks now and what I noticed about the locals here is that they weren't that excited about meeting new people from a different culture..? Maybe I just haven't met the right people yet or maybe that's just me :/

Singapore is very safe and clean. The government is not corrupt. The infrastructure is excellent and the schools very good. This is all about quality of life.

Singapore is quite similar to Europe wrt daily way of living. What sometimes frustrates is the rigid adherence to procedures and the carrot and stick approach deep in the culture.

Food wise I prefer Thailand, S'pore foodcourts are in my opinion not so good.

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