Facts at a Glance

About Singapore - Facts at a GlanceAbout Singapore - Facts at a GlanceAbout Singapore - Facts at a Glance

This page covers information and statistics of Singapore. Including events and holidays in Singapore, population, land size, the Singapore flag and other useful tips.

Events and Public Holidays

Singapore's polyglot population celebrates a number of festivals and events. Chinese, Hindu and Muslim celebrations follow a lunar calendar so dates of festivities vary from year to year.

Chinese New Year, in January or February, is welcomed in with dragon dances, parades and much good cheer. Chinatown is lit up and there are fireworks and night markets.

During Ramadan, food stalls are set up in the evening in the Arab Street district, near the Sultan Mosque. Hari Raya Puasa, the end of Ramadan in January or February, is marked by three days of joyful celebrations.

Vesak Day in April or May celebrates Buddha's birth, enlightenment and death. It is marked by various events, including the release of caged birds to symbolise the setting free of captive souls.

The Dragon Boat Festival, held in May or June, commemorates the death of a Chinese saint who drowned himself as a protest against government corruption. It is celebrated with boat races across Marina Bay.

The Festival of the Hungry Ghosts is usually celebrated in September. This is when the souls of the dead are released for feasting and entertainment on earth. Chinese operas are performed for them and food is offered; the ghosts eat the spirit of the food but thoughtfully leave the substance for the mortal celebrants.

The festival of Thaipusam is one of the most dramatic Hindu festivals and is now banned in India. Devotees honour Lord Subramaniam with acts of amazing body-piercing masochism - definitely not for the squeamish. In Singapore, devotees march in procession from the Sri Srinivasa Perumal Temple on Serangoon Road to the Chettiar Hindu Temple on Tank Road. The festival is based on the lunar calendar but will be held in October for the next couple of years.

Public Holidays in 2015

New Year’s Day

1 January 2015

Chinese New Year

19 February - 20 February 2015

Good Friday

3 April 2015

Labour Day

1 May 2015

Vesak Day

1 June 2015

Hari Raya Puasa

17 July 2015

SG50 Public Holiday 

7 August 2015

National Day

9 August 2015

Hari Raya Haji

24 September 2015


10 November 2015

Christmas Day

25 December 2015

Facts and Figures

Quick Facts

Full country name:

Republic of Singapore


715.8 sq km


5,312,400 (36% foreigners)


74% Chinese, 13% Malay, 9% Indian, 3% Others


English, Malay, Mandarin and Tamil


9% Taoist, 42% Buddhist, 15% Muslim,
15% Christian, 4% Hindu, 15% Others


Parliamentary democracy


Tony Tan

Prime Minister:

Lee Hsien Long

Major industries:

Shipping, banking, tourism, electrical & electronics, chemicals, oil refining

Major trading partners:

US, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan

Health risks:





220-240V, 50 Hz

County code:


Mobile Phone network:

GSM 900, GSM 1800, 3G

Weights & measures:

Metric with local variations

General Information


The local currency is Singapore dollars and cents. Notes come in denominations of SGD 2, SGD 5, SGD 10, SGD 20, SGD 50, SGD 100, SGD 500, SGD 1,000, and SGD 10,000. Coins come in denomination of 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents and SGD 1.

Banking hours are Monday to Friday: 10 am to 3 pm, and Saturday: 9.30 am to 1 PM (some banks are open until 3 PM). Sunday, 9.30 am to 3 PM (some banks in Orchard Road). Most banks handle travelers' cheques and change foreign currencies. However, some banks do not have foreign exchange dealings on Saturday. Passports are required when cashing travelers' cheques. A nominal commission may be charged.

Credit / Charge Cards

Major cards are widely accepted by establishments in Singapore. Should any shop insist on adding a surcharge, contact the respective card company to report the errant shop-owner.

Drinking Water

It is perfectly safe to drink water straight from the tap in Singapore. However, for those who prefer bottled mineral water, local supermarkets and grocers always have ample stocks.


Visas: Most Western nationals either do not require a visa at all or do not require a visa for a social stay of up to 90 days. A 30-day permit is issued on arrival, and extensions are difficult to obtain.


Singapore's government is strict on drug laws, with the death penalty applied for drug trafficking. It is also against the entry of firearms, controlled drugs, endangered species of wildlife, chewing gum and cigarette lighters in the shape of a firearm. Smoking in public buses, the MRT, taxis, lifts and air-conditioned places is also deemed against the law; with fines up to S$1,000. The government is also adamant that littering is an offence and carries penalties of a fine of S$1,000 or more; and also a stint of corrective work order.


Tipping is seldom necessary, as a 7% goods and services tax (GST) and a service charge of 10% is usually added automatically (though always double-check the bill). However it is customary to spare a few dollars for efficient waiters, bellboys and taxi drivers.

Singapore Flag

The colours of the Singapore flag represent red for brotherhood and equality; white for purity and virtue. The crescent moon represents a young nation on the rise. The five stars stand for Singapore's ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice and equality.

The crescent moon originally served as a symbol of assurance to the Malays in 1959 —the year the flag was designed— that Singapore was not a Chinese state. Today it is generally said that the moon signified a young nation rising. The flag was designed initially to have three stars, until leaders such as then Deputy Prime Minister Toh Chin Chye expressed concern that Singapore might be perceived to have associations with the Malayan Communist Party, the flag of which also had three stars. The flag was originally meant to be red as red is a very traditional Chinese color. But because of the fear of Communism in those days, a completely red flag was abandoned.

The Singapore Flag

Related Page

Re: PR approved, super shocking?

I think it is pretty normal to get a PR with a spouse being SC. As long as the SG gov is convinced that your marriage is not a fake one then I believe something must be very wrong or suspicious to see them turning you down.

I recall some cases on this forum where they apparently refused to grant PR to a spouse of SC but what should be always kept in mind is, that people write here in case of problems and only very very occasionally reporting straight forward success stories.

This makes you special OP so thank you for providing this info.

Re: Helper Recommendations

We are a British/Chinese couple with a 3 year old and another on the way. Maria has worked for us for almost 3 years and we are moving to Japan, so she needs a new job. She is wonderful with kids and extremely honest and reliable. She worked for a British couple before she joined us. If you are interested, please call her directly on 8264 6343. All the best, Mark and Sally (we will give her a written reference)

Re: PR approved, super shocking?

Sorry for missing that out. I'm Indian, born in India but birth certificate is Singapore issued. Singapore citizen.

Re: PR approved, super shocking?

I think we miss some essential information to say it's a fresh datapoint.
OP, are you SC? Your ethnicity?

Re: PR approved, super shocking?

Well I never, and congratulations! :)
That's seems like a fresh data point on the PR-radar. Application submitted without living or working in SG, and approved despite zero SGn tax returns.

You had a winning lottery ticket there IMO :) Like Ecu jokingly suggests, and now you know what your patriotic duty is ;)

Re: Applying for PR Tomorrow

I don't know why you are on the Singapore expats forum when you don't stay there, don't care to live there, don't seem to have any ties but definitely know what the ICA can and cannot see from a mile away - even what the US can see from a mile away...
Oh Wait - you are above the rules.... :D :D :D

Because I lived in SG for c6-7 years.That covered 3 separate international relo in/outs, so I'm quite familiar with many of the kind of questions that come up here. And when we are done here it's 50/50 that me and my SGn wife might return there. So it's of interest and useful for me to keep abreast of what's going on in the expat sphere, and hopefully I can occasionally give some assistance to those setting out SG-bound.

When I worked in the US we had to hire a great many people for a 3 year project that at it's core was an IT programme. Corporate headcount was c60k, our direct project team c120 people...
Many of the IT contractors had arrived in North America via a stint and a passport in Canada. This caused us varying degrees of trouble in hiring them into the US, as USCBP looked upon the candidates not as candidates brought in for say a 'one-year contract', but people who'd given up on their country of birth, then given up on Canada, and now odds on were probably going to try and get a US Green Card. Before we even offered a candidate a job, we had to try and divine which ones might get rejected by USCBP as passport-shoppers. That was a perpetual issue, and a significant challenge.

p.s. 'Fighting the PAPbots'. Lol, a blast from the past, maybe the relevance is lost on you. The government proceeding with a policy (in that case opening internet access in SG, yes, as late as the mid 90s), but then rather bluntly trying to exert their control out into Usenet. Rather like immigration into SG, opening a door and welcoming some people in, but then retrospectively tweaking and changing policy to try and control the ultimate and optimal outcome.

India not part of Asia according to Papa Johns' website


They have included India as part of Europe, Middle East and India.
That is an interesting classification.

Re: Moving to SG with a pet dog (Beagle)

It hasn't been mentioned yet - but your Beagle is not an approved breed for the government's HDB list. Meaning, you can't rent an HDB apartment and keep your dog there. If you're earning enough to rent a condo/landed property this won't be an issue.

Secondly, none of the Condos I have ever lived in have had any kind of grass area. Not to say this applies to all of them, but space is limited. You might get grass patches between trees on the pavement outside, depending on the area.

Dog runs have been mentioned - otherwise you're required by law to leash your dog at all times in public.

So its not impossible, but without a car it might be hard.

Re: Chrome BS

Hamburger icon>More tools>task manager or Shift+Esc

Who's using up a lot of RAM? RAM usage is a common complaint with Chrome.

And just spitballing here; go to settings and search for "Use hardware acceleration when available", toggle that and see what happens.

I also found this: http://www.sevenforums.com/bsod-help-su ... hrome.html

tl;dr version: old device drivers.

I really don't have much to go on and these are just random suggestions.
Chrome does use a lot but not as much as FF and FF doesn't crash or hang often, and when it does it doesn't BS

yeah it could certainly be drivers, all of that stuff is way out of date

Just update your computer; install a different OS if you have to if you don't qualify to get Windows 10 for free.

I have the opposite problem; FF keeps crashing on me. I also received an OTA update for FF and it removed all my add-ons; now I'm just too lazy to put them back in.

My Windows 7 virtual machine won't update; I don't know if I'll even bother keeping that up to date (NB: I used my laptop Windows Authentication key for it so it's a legit install).

Find friends for workout every weekend

I'm a new worker in Singapore. I moved here only 1 month ago.

And I would like to find the friends that want to workout with me. I can swim, play basketball, badminton and jogging.

Let's workout together Yeah!!!!

Re: Profit taking of supermarket by...

Strong Eagle:
I have a son in law who used to manage a grocery store. Some of the tricks are quite amazing. For example, a wholesaler will offer a substantial discount on a product if the retailer will put it on sale for two or three weeks. The wholesaler thinks the store will buy 3 weeks worth of product but instead the store buys three months at a discount... and either stores it or demands that the wholesaler deliver in lots. As soon as the three week sale is done, prices revert to normal and the store margins go up.

I've been looking into selling very good Vietnamese rice liquor into the US market... a friend in Vietnam has built a very good brand. Because almost all states force a three tier system of producer, distributor, and retailer, you cannot believe all the shenanigans that go on... or probably, you do believe. The distributor is in the cat bird seat and puts the squeeze on both up and down the chain. Larger retailers can fight back but smaller ones cannot.

Re: How Much Should I Pay Myself?

Strong Eagle:
strong eagle, you see you yourself is clueless on the current situation. MOM will NOT approve an application if they do not see sufficient effort done to recruit local first. I am aware Goldy740 wants to run his own recruitment agency if he is granted his EP. Read up on this post : http://www.mom.gov.sg/employment-agenci ... ent-holder
http://www.mom.gov.sg/employment-agenci ... sment-tool

I did the self assessment tool, both of them. I told it I did not have a work pass or Entrepass. You know what it said?


Once again you are blowing smoke out yer arse. Why don't you take a bit of time a research how one goes about forming a company and obtaining an EP from it?

Re: How Much Should I Pay Myself?

Strong Eagle:

Ya know... I missed that... I don't really care. She/he now knows who is telling her/him that she/he is clueless. And I stand by that statement.

It is unprofessional, but mostly, it's immature. Time to move on, especially since the OP hasn't been back in a while.

Re: My Mandarin for your English

I have given you mail

Re: PR approved, super shocking?

Hahaha, even if thats the case, I think we're extremely extremely lucky!