Living in Singapore

Living in Singapore

Singapore - MBS SkylineThrive comfortably

With convenient access to Southeast Asia and the rest of the world, Singapore is a place sought-after by many who want to pursue personal growth. The country also offers state-of-the-art facilities for education, shopping, sports and recreation.

Singapore - Gardens by the BayBest of both worlds

Whether you love the ease of city life or fancy a walk on the wild side, Singapore has plenty of both to spare.

JCU Students Diverse CommunityVibrant and diverse communities

You will experience a wide range of cultures, festivities, and practices from different parts of the world. No matter how novel your interests are, the city is filled with people who share them.

Singapore - NightSafe & secure environment

Singapore is one of the safest cities to live and study in — with well-lit streets, low crime rate, and safe public transport systems.

Singapore - FireworksNever a dull moment

Love nature, interested in the arts, or simply enjoy chasing excitement? Singapore has a wide selection of leisure activities within easy reach — from the beaches of Sentosa Island to the flora of Gardens by the Bay, and many more. The various shopping centres and sporting facilities also offer plenty of entertainment.

Singapore - FoodDelight your taste buds

This food-obsessed nation has Michelin-starred delicacies and international cuisines, as well as unique fusion dishes and timeless hawker favourites. Whatever it is, you can taste it all.

Learn more:

The average living cost in Singapore for an international student is estimated to be $1230 to $3200 per month. This amount will depend on the individual’s lifestyle.

The following table serves as a guide for budgetary purposes only.

ItemCost Per MonthComments
Accommodation$550 – $2000Rental varies with the geographical area, type of accommodation, demand, facilities provided, and the number of people sharing the unit.
Meals$450 – $600Expense is calculated based on $15 – $20 per day for 3 meals at a hawker centre.
Public Transportation$100 – $150Amount varies depending on the travel distance and preferred mode of transport.

$30 – $50

Amount depends on usage and telecom packages subscribed.
Personal Expense$100 – $400Expenses vary with individual spending habits.

If you are holding on to a Student Pass in Singapore, you are only allowed to work if you meet specific requirements.

You are not allowed to work if:

  • you are not studying in an approved institution, or
  • you are an exchange student doing study modules in Singapore.

Source: Ministry of Manpower

By Train

Singapore’s MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) system is probably the fastest way to zip around the city. Most of our popular attractions are just a short walk away from an MRT station, making our trains a great way to get around.

Visitors can use the following options for MRT journeys:

  1. Get a Singapore Tourist Pass, a special EZ-Link stored-value card which will allow you unlimited travel for one day (S$10), two days (S$16) or three days (S$20).
  2. Adult Stored Value Smartcard (EZ-link/Nets FlashPay): All international student will receive a James Cook University Singapore Nets Flashpay, which comes with a stored value of $5. You can also purchase this card at any Transitlink Ticket Office or convenience stores.

Train fares range from $0.92 to $2.17, depending on travel distance.

Singapore Rail Network Map

singapore railway network map

By Bus

Besides being an economical way to get around, it is also one of the most scenic – you will be able to indulge in air-conditioned comfort, as you admire the lush greenery and beautiful architecture of our ‘city in a garden’. You can pay for your bus fare using an adult stored value smartcard (EZ-link/Nets FlashPay) or the Singapore Tourist Pass. Just keep an eye out for the electronic card reader – located next to the bus driver – and tap as you board.

Bus fares vary from $0.92 to S$2.17 per trip, depending on the distance of travel.

By Taxi

Taxis are comfortable and especially handy if you want to go to places not accessible by the bus or MRT. Cabs here are metered, but there may be surcharges depending on when, where and which company’s taxi you board.

You can hail a taxi by the roadside in most places, or by queuing for one at a taxi stand, which you will find at most malls hotels and attractions.

Standard taxi fares start from $3.20 to $3.90 and a 10km trip should usually cost around $9.00.

For further information on taxi fares and charges, please visit the Public Transport Council website.

Transport Apps

Source: Visit Singapore

Singapore is situated near the equator and has a typically tropical climate, with abundant rainfall, high and uniform temperatures, and high humidity all year round. Many of its climate variables, such as temperature and relative humidity, do not show large month-to-month variation.

Singapore’s climate is characterised by two monsoon seasons separated by inter-monsoonal periods. The Northeast Monsoon occurs from December to early March and the Southwest Monsoon from June to September.

Compared to countries in the temperate regions, temperatures in Singapore varies little from month to month and also from day to day. The daily temperature range does not usually fall below 23 – 25ºC during the night and not rise above 31 – 33ºC during the day.

Rainfall is plentiful in Singapore and it rains an average of 167 days of the year. Much of the rain is heavy and accompanied by thunder.

Relative humidity shows a fairly uniform pattern throughout the year and does not vary much from month to month. The mean annual relative humidity is 83.9%.

Source: Meteorological Service Singapore

When considering opening a bank account in Singapore, you can refer to the table below. Please bring along with you the documents indicated in the table when you visit the bank.


Documents To Bring



  • Passport
  • Student's Pass
  • Letter from school
    • Restricted to official letters from educational institutions or schools under the purview of Council from Private Education or Ministry of Education
    • James Cook University Singapore students can only obtain this letter by submitting a request form to Student Services
  1. DBS Multiplier Account

  2. eMySavings Account


  1. Monthly Savings Account

Please take note of the following.

  • All bank account applications are subjected to approval.
  • Remember to ask for an ATM card so that you could withdraw cash conveniently at the automated teller machines (ATMs).
  • Banks may charge a small fee of $2 per month if the account balance for the month falls below a stipulated amount (usually $500).
  • James Cook University Singapore is not affiliated with any bank. You are responsible for your financial arrangements with the bank. James Cook University Singapore will not be involved in any dispute between you and the bank.