What types of things can you do in Singapore that you can’t do in the US? 

By September 14, 2019Current

TL;DR – If this is not freedom and respect, I don’t know what is.

We all have our own special rabbit hole on the Internet. It’s Youtube for some, Instagram for yet others, and for me, it’s Quora. I try hard to avoid opening up the app when it’s already late at night, for fear that I’d just be going deeper and deeper into the magical tunnel of fabulous contents.

I came across an easy read on Quora today, and I want to share it with more people. I particularly like the answer from Uwe Tan. Here it is, and the bits in green are from me!

What types of things can you do in Singapore that you can’t do in the US?


Walking and drinking alcoholic drinks at the same time with the beverage in full view of public.

Oh, I did not know it’s illegal to drink in public in most cities in the US!

Walking alone late at night while feeling safe and not getting raped or robbed most (99.99%) of the time.

Low crime doesn’t mean no crime! But yes, I’ve lived in and travelled to many cities in the world and very few places make me feel as safe as Singapore does! Even at 4AM!

Walking away from your personal belonging for more than 5 minutes and still finding them in situ when you come back most of the time.

I do that all the time too! Leave my computer on the table in Starbucks while I go to the loo!

Standing on the wrong side of the escalator without the “tsk” from the people behind.

Not sure about this one, since I always stand on the correct side!

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Standing at the side of the road without being taken or mistaken for a streetwalker if you are pretty.

We don’t even get catcalls much in Singapore!

Standing up against police’s wrongdoing without getting shot.

Such news from the US are always so depressing to read!

Having to own a property, even it is only for 99 years, regardless of one’s social stratum, unless one is too lazy to work or not in a condition to work.

Did you know Singapore has one of the highest home ownership in the world?  We rank third in the world behind Mauritius and Romania at 91%, but in Asia, we’re No. 1. Also, more than 80% of our resident population live in HDB flats.

The Singapore government is also sensitive to the people’s needs and they listen, so policies are constantly tweaked to better serve the market. New announcements on higher housing grants and higher income caps have just been announced earlier this week!

If you can understand Chinese or Cantonese, this is a fantastic video about Singapore’s public housing policy!

Having an effective, efficient and honest public administrative system.

Yes, yes, yes! I had to renew my passport recently, and the entire process was so painless and quick! If you want to have some sort of comparison, check out this painful process in Malaysia!

Having legal penalties that make would-be drug traffickers pee their pants and think twice about pushing drugs in Singapore.

We have been called all sorts of names because we still have the death penalty for drug trafficking. Many people ask why Singapore still has not done away with the death penalty. We say, because it works.

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Think about it. Because of our geographical location, access to drugs is so easy. With our income significantly higher than our neighbouring countries, it does not take a genius to figure out that we will be the most desired target market if without the deterrent of the death sentence. 

By the way, Singapore has one of the lowest drug use rates in the world.


Surviving without owning a car as public transport is ubiquitous, cheap and accessible.

Singapore has a good public transport network with the connection and transfers all carefully planned and thought out. It’s comfortable, safe, quick and also very affordable. Ditch the cars and go green, people!

Surviving for not paying tips as tipping is seen as a bonus. Fair pay in Asia is the relationship between employers and employees. We don’t drag customers into the equation. Besides, good service depends on a team, not just the waiting staff serving you.

The US has one of the strongest tipping cultures in the world, and I think in many cases, it is just an excuse for the fact that employers are paying (too) low wages. Time to rethink!

Surviving a hunger in the middle of the night with an empty refrigerator as there will definitely be at least a 24/7 eating place within 800m around you.

Oh yessss, Prata O Prata!

If the above are not freedom and respect, I don’t know what is.

I love Singapore!


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Qiqi Wong

Author Qiqi Wong

Insert pretentious crap about myself here.

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