It looks like we Singaporeans have no choice but to accept the fact that Singapore is a magnet for rich people to reside in. As clean and safe as our country may be, it isn't surprising that many of us dream of bidding goodbye to Singapore for good when basic necessities and living essentials (think: HDB flats, healthcare, food, cars, etc.) are increasingly more expensive. It also isn't rocket science why Singapore came up tops in the Economist Intelligence Unit's 2016 Worldwide Cost of Living survey three years consecutively. Here, you can read about how the new Singapore 2017 budget might affect households.
That said, if you are looking to travel around the world, perhaps it would be a better idea that you consider visiting the five cheapest cities in the world and spend your money wisely amidst the sluggish economy. If you aren't wealthy, we at GET.com share with you the 3 most expensive cities that you ought to avoid if you don't want to deplete your bank account into oblivion.
3 Expensive Cities That You Should Avoid Unless You're Filthy Rich
1. Oslo, Norway
How do you feel about paying around USD$6 for a bottle of mineral water? A trip to Oslo certainly sounds fun for you but probably less so for your wallet, especially if you would be in town for days or weeks at a stretch. Upon researching for travellers' experiences in Oslo, I learnt that a Big Mac there costs about USD$20 while a beef burrito at a Tex-Mexican lounge restaurant in downtown Oslo costs about USD$31. The prices of beer and alcoholic beverages in Oslo are comparable to those in Singapore, though.
2. Zurich, Switzerland
This business city's name comprises the word 'rich' and although it has a lot to offer, you really do need to be rather rich to have a whale of a time without needing to scrimp here and there while in Zurich. Simply put, everything from hotels, hostels and proper restaurants cost outrageous amounts all year round - definitely not ideal for travellers on a tight budget.
Another thing to note is that the Swiss Franc is considerably stronger than the Singapore Dollar. And in case you are still going ahead with your plans to visit Zurich, know that things get even more expensive during summer season. After all, the pretty things in Zurich are meant for those with fat paychecks and bank balances.
3. Copenhagen, Denmark
Like most Scandinavian countries, Denmark's Copenhagen is one of the most expensive cities in Europe, especially when you are talking about hotels and restaurant meals and drinks. For reference, a McDonald's meal in Copenhagen will set you back around SGD$14, not quite as bad as Oslo, though.
For those who are looking to take in Copenhagen's beauty without shelling out too much money on attractions that cost about the same as tourist attractions in Singapore, keep your costs down by cooking your own meals with ingredients bought in supermarkets and strolling leisurely around the charming neighbourhoods.