Expats will have no problem keeping in touch in Singapore. Landline and mobile phone networks, internet and postal services are all of a high standard. English television channels and online news sites are also readily accessible.
The three main providers of phone and internet services in Singapore are StarHub, Singtel and M1; expats should compare the pricing of their available options before making a decision of which service provider to go with.
Landlines and mobile phones in Singapore
While old-fashioned copper phonelines are still functional, most of Singapore's telecoms companies provide digital home-phones that use broadband lines instead. This is a much cheaper alternative, especially for international calls. Expats can apply online for a phone line, call service providers directly or visit one of their retail outlets.
For communication on the go, Singapore has one of the world's highest rates of mobile phone ownership and coverage is extremely good. Both prepaid and post-paid services are readily available at reasonable rates.
Internet in Singapore
Internet in Singapore is very fast, with wireless, ADSL and fibre options available. Most packages come with a contract ranging between six and 24 months, and breaking it will result in penalties.
WiFi is readily available at places around Singapore, as are internet cafés.
Censorship in Singapore
The Media Development Authority (MDA) regulates and ensures local print media, radio, television and internet adhere to the law. A number of websites are blocked, and when this is the case visitors are usually greeted by an MDA message alerting them that the site is forbidden. Although the MDA does monitor foreign content, expats shouldn't have any problem accessing international news sites and social media.
Postal services in Singapore
Mail services in Singapore are provided by Singapore Post (SP), which is a subsidiary of Singtel. Local mail usually takes one to two days, and international mail depends on the destination. Additionally, there are a number of courier companies independent of SP that deliver both locally and internationally. Some of these also double up as delivery services for heavy shipments.
English-language media in Singapore
There is plenty of English language media in Singapore, including print and broadcast. Mediacorp, a state-owned free-to-air network, offers a variety of channels in English and Malay. Paid services include StarHub and Singtel cable TV.
English books are readily available at all big bookstores. There are also a number of local English newspapers. Additionally, many international newspapers and magazines are available from newsstands.
►For info on financial matters in the Lion City, see Banking, Money and Taxes in Singapore
Are you an expat living in Singapore?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Singapore. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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