Visiting Singapore: Dos and Don'ts
Singapore is a beautiful, welcoming, historically fascinating city, where travellers can enjoy incredible food and high class shopping by the barrelful. Yet it is also a city of rules and structures and, if you really want to enjoy your time there, you are best advised to know them before your journey. Here are some basic dos and don'ts for the visitor to Singapore.
Speak formally to new acquaintances. Singaporeans prefer to be addressed by their second names, with the the prefix of Mr, Mrs or Ms if you do not know them well. Wait for them to invite you to use their first name before you get that familiar.
Leave something on your plate. As with many Asian societies, eating everything that you have been served is a sign that your host has not provided sufficient food. Leave a bite or two to show your satisfaction and gratitude.
Take off your shoes when entering someone's home. That goes for religious buildings too.
Don't Chew gum. Gum is 100% illegal in Singapore unless it's medicinal gum.
Don't Drop litter. Singaporeans are proudly clean and tidy people and enforce laws to ensure new arrivals are the same way.
Don't Smoke publically. In any enclosed space smoking is against the law and dropping a cigarette butt in the street is a finable offence.
Don't Joke about religion or politics. Due to Singapore's mixture of cultures and faiths, it is a very bad idea to make a humorous remark about religion or politics. In fact, these two subjects are best avoided in general, even with someone you get along with.
Don't Tip. Believe it or not, tipping is actually looked down upon in Singapore!
Don't Point. Don't Point at someone. It's rude in most culture but particularly offensive in this one.