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Is Singapore More Expensive Than London?

Singapore and London are among the world’s most exciting cities. They differ in geography, traditions, cultures, and living costs. Both have exorbitant rental and restaurant rates, not to mention the steep cost of gas.

Is Singapore more expensive than London? If you’re quite perplexed about which location fits your ideal budget to start a new life, here’s a cost comparison that will lay out all the great details of the most recent data on the cost of living in both progressive countries on the list.

If you want to invest as an expat or high-net-worth individual, which is what i specialize in, you can email me (advice@adamfayed.com) or use WhatsApp (+44-7393-450-837).

Why London?

Life in London has a genuinely alluring quality. London has always been a popular tourism destination. This applies to local and international travelers. More so, being the capital of both England and the United Kingdom, it’s also home to the British Royal Family and several of the most famous sites in the world.

Living in London is an attractive prospect. It’s because it’s a full-on multicultural city. Hence, London comes with more sights, attractions, and opportunities. Other than that, it also offers lots more things to do than most places in the UK. It’s also comprised of larger sections of Europe.

Given the size and diversity of London’s neighborhoods, all of the best things a big city might provide are arts and culture. It could also lend you incredible employment prospects as well as a broad range of neighborhoods, sports, and entertainment. It’s rich for its long-lived history, expansive green spaces, and efficient transportation system.

Is Singapore More Expensive Than London?
Photo by Peter Spencer

Why Singapore?

People in Singapore are dedicated when it comes to maintaining multiculturalism. They also have the openness to empower others and share their values. This works to strengthen Singapore’s cultural identity. It paved the way for ensuring that its citizens can live in harmony with one another in spite of their diversity.

Due to their shared language and beliefs, foreigners may rapidly integrate into Singaporean society. This became a good reason why it continuously attracted foreigners who later decided to settle in this city. You will discover a range of physical and cultural mixes. It’s due to its rich and varied cultural heritage.

Cost of living difference between London and Singapore

Is Singapore cheaper than London? Let’s consider the details below to help you understand which location better meets your financial limits.

Restaurant Meal Cost

Eating at a cheap restaurant in Singapore costs approximately 15.00 S$. This makes it an affordable choice for both locals and tourists. However, London offers a different picture. With a comparable meal, it cost 31.82 S$. This shows a significant rise of 112.2%.

A three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant in Singapore costs 100.00 S compared to 134.05 S compared to London, which presents a 34.0% difference for a more expensive dining experience.

Fast food options are also a lifesaver if you’re tight on budget. A combination meal from McDonald’s is around 10.00 S$ (5.97 £) in Singapore, while it’s 13.40 S$ (8.00 £) in London. More so, it also shows a 34.0% rise in London when compared to Singapore.

A regular cappuccino costs 6.21 S$ (3.71 £) in Singapore. In London, it’s a bit cheaper as it’s around 5.94 S$ (3.55 £).

Market Costs

The prices of various things in the grocery store are actually different depending on service features such as brand, quantity, and quality. Prices for necessities such as a liter of milk in Singapore are 4.29 S$. However, in London, the same item costs 2.23 S$, which shows a difference of -48.0%.

On the other hand, one kilogram of chicken fillets costs 13.97 S$ in Singapore. More so, it costs 12.77 S$ in London—a difference of -8.6%. One kilogram of local cheese costs 24.05 S$ in Singapore. Then it costs 12.90 S$ in London. There’s a drop of -46.4%. 

Transportation Costs

London has substantially greater transportation costs compared to Singapore.

For example, a one-way local transit ticket costs 1.95 S$ in Singapore. But it rises to 4.86 shillings in London. Therefore, it shows a significant 149.2% increase. Singapore’s monthly public transport pass costs 128.00 S$. Meanwhile, in London, its starting cost is 301.60 S$. Consequently, it has a discrepancy of 135.6%.

A 1 liter of gasoline cost 2.83 S$ (1.69 £) in Singapore. In London, it’s around 2.65 S$ (1.58 £).

In comparison to Singapore, the starting fare and per-kilometer rates for taxi services are also noticeably higher in London.

cost of living in singapore
Photo by Alaric Sim

Monthly Utility Costs

If you’re living in Singapore, an 85 m2 flat pays 223.25 S$ for basic utilities. However, if you’re moving to London, the same apartment costs 516.29 S$. This shows a difference of 131.3%.

The monthly costs for a mobile phone plan including calls and 10GB+ data are 21.95 S$ in Singapore and 26.20 S$ in London, respectively. It’s representing a 19.4% difference. Internet services in Singapore and London comprise a 21.4% price difference. Singapore internet companies charge 45.98 S$ per month, while in London, it’s around 55.83 S$. This includes an internet speed of 60 Mbps or more, unlimited data, and cable/ADSL.

Sports and Activities Costs

There are differences in the costs of living an active lifestyle between the two cities. A single adult’s monthly fitness club membership in Singapore costs 134.55 S$. Meanwhile, in London, it costs 92.99 S$. This shows a difference of -30.9%.

On weekends, the cost of renting a tennis court for an hour is 17.24 S$ in Singapore. Comparably, it’s 23.57 S$ in London, indicating a 36.7% increase. A movie ticket for a worldwide release costs 15.00 S$ in Singapore and 25.13 S$ in London, amounting to a difference of 67.6%.

Childcare

The costs associated with childcare are definitely different in some significant aspects. Private preschool or kindergarten costs 1,693.71 S$ per month in Singapore. More so, in London, it’s not less than 2,865.82 S$ per month. This shows a difference of 69.2% between the costs of both countries.

However, there is a -4.4% difference in the annual cost of an international primary school for one child between Singapore’s 36,631.02 S$ and London’s 35,029.58 S$, respectively.

Clothing and Shoes

Fashion enthusiasts will find differing prices for clothing items too. In Singapore, the cost of a pair of Levis 501 jeans is 99.45 S$. In London, it is 137.72 S$, indicating a 38.5% rise. Additionally, one pair of Nike Running Shoes that’s mid-range in Singapore is 127.23 S$ (75.98 £), while in London, it costs around 141.49 S$ (84.50 £).

This suggests that, compared to Singapore, garment prices are typically higher in London.

Monthly Renting Costs

The cost of renting apartments in both city centers and suburban areas is not the same. This varies significantly between Singapore and London.

In Singapore, a one-bedroom apartment in the city center costs 4,085.88 S$. In London, it’s 3,773.50 S$, reflecting a -7.6% difference. Similarly, a one-bedroom apartment outside the city center is 2,993.08 S$ in Singapore. Then, it’s 2,696.00 S$ in London. This indicates a -9.9% change between the two countries.

Furthermore, if you’re eyeing larger accommodations, a three-bedroom apartment in the city center costs 8,214.63 S$ in Singapore and 6,940.61 S$ in London. A three-bedroom apartment outside of the city center costs,on average, 5,293.28 S$ in Singapore. More so, it’s at 4,383.91 S$ in London.

Apartment Purchase Costs

For those considering real estate investment, the price per square meter to buy an apartment is another crucial factor that you should consider. This needs extra scrutiny to ensure that your budget for this will be put to good use.

The price per square meter in Singapore’s city center is 27,623.76 S$, while in London it is 23,339.04 S$. This shows a discrepancy of -15.5%.

However, if you want a different and more peaceful location, the price per square meter outside of the city center varies by 18.6%. This goes for 13,324.02 S$ in London. And it’s a bit costlier for a 16,360.06 S$ in Singapore if you compare. These comparisons highlight disparities in real estate costs. With London generally being more affordable in terms of apartment prices, Singapore is also worth choosing due to its advancement.

housing cost in the UK vs singapore
Photo by Tetyana Kovyrina

Salaries and Financing

If you reside in another country, you also need to determine the country’s capability to help you sustain a living and, at the same time, how it’s fit to help you live a comfortable life while you’re there.

Therefore, average monthly net salaries after tax provide insights into the earning potential and financial health of individuals in Singapore and London. The average monthly net salary in Singapore is 6,904.45 S$. However, it’s 5,587.84 S$ in London; the 19.1% difference is indeed noticeable.

Mortgage interest rates are also an important consideration. This is for those looking to buy property. In Singapore, the yearly fixed-rate interest is 3.63%. More so, London offers a 5.54% interest rate, indicating a significant +52.6% increase.

These figures underscore the financial aspects of living in each city. With London having higher mortgage interest rates and lower average monthly net salaries compared to Singapore, this is something that might help you choose which of the two will help you become financially stable.

Education Costs for International Students

International students at London institutions pay different fees based on their degree, institution, course, etc. Typically, overseas students spend between £10,000 and £40,000 or more.

International school costs in Singapore may reach $39,000 per year. Moreover, there are also schools across the city-state with annual tuition fees below $25,000. 

Healthcare Cost

Health insurance plans come with numerous benefits, options, and conditions, as well as variations. It’s means; acquiring it might be a bit complicated. So, instead of trying to compare all the available plans and all their benefits, you should cherry-pick and only compare the benefits that are strongly relevant to you.

The UK government announced that the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) will increase by 66%. This is from £624 to £1,035 per person per year. This is applicable to most main applicants.

Foreigners’ health insurance costs in Singapore vary by age, lifestyle, and medical history. The typical Singapore health insurance plan is S$132 for a 45-year-old nonsmoker. Premiums for 75-year-olds average S$69 to S$1,063.

Is Singapore More Expensive Than London: Final Thoughts

Finally, the thorough cost of living in London vs Singapore comparisons highlight lifestyle-friendly options. These include housing, transportation, daily spending, and budgeting.

This guide demonstrated considerable cost of living discrepancies between the two areas, emphasizing the need to tailor choices to preferences and resources. With transportation, utilities, and leisure, living costs climb, and entertainment and exercise may impact monthly costs. Education and childcare budgets should also focus on family and future planning.

Relevant lifestyle choices matter. Renting, buying, location, and price-value matching affect money and life. Local economic knowledge, personal priorities, and future planning are needed for a healthy, happy life, and that’s why managing various locations and achieving objectives may require smart financial decisions.

Pained by financial indecision? Want to invest with Adam?

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Adam is an internationally recognised author on financial matters, with over 735.2 million answer views on Quora.com, a widely sold book on Amazon, and a contributor on Forbes.

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