5 Worst Tourist Traps in Singapore and Their Pocket-Friendly Alternatives

Selling dreams of journeying above the city lights on the Singapore Flyer or having a meal at Singapore’s highest restaurant is easy.

What’s not easy is seeing hard-earned dollars vanish in a matter of minutes, when in fact you could have enjoyed that panoramic view for free (see other things you can do in Singapore for free), in solitude, and without being bound by time.

Read on for tourist traps you should save your bucks on in Singapore, and pocket-friendly alternatives to the experiences they promise:

1. The Singapore Flyer Alternative

Catch a panoramic view on the roof of the Esplanade instead.

For a panoramic view of Singapore’s skyline and the glittering city lights beneath your feet, you don’t necessarily have to shell out fifty odd dollars, share a gondola with other couples or families, and be entitled to only one slow round above the skyline – aka the Singapore Flyer.

Climb up to the roof of good old Esplanade instead, with your picnic basket and your loved one, and lay out under the night sky and above the city light for hours, alone, quietly. Save your bucks and make it a night to remember.

2. Do Not Hop On the City Tour Bus

Walk through the city instead.

Instead of shelling out money to zoom along Singapore on a Hop-on Hop-off bus, stroll along the by-lanes, take the MRT and make the most of your time in this walking-friendly city.

The money you save will let you savor the moments that will make you remember Singapore – eating, drinking, indulging in an impulsive buy and letting your feet lead you where the bus wouldn’t.

3. Avoid Dining at Crowded Boat Quay

Try Clarke Quay and Central Mall instead.

Ditch the strip of expensive restaurants along the waterfront of Boat Quay, and make your way to the pubs and restaurants of Clarke Quay instead.

Stop by home-brewed craft beer and indulgent happy hours at Brewerkz, or for a pitcher of frozen Margarita with delicious tex-mex at Iguana Café.

To eat on the cheap, head over to Central Mall in Clarke Quay and try one of its cheap eateries; it’s how the locals manage to keep their dinner costs low and party all night long in Singapore’s happening night district!

4. Say No to Ice Cream Parlors

Have a S$1 ice cream instead.

What’s better than homemade ice cream? Ice cream you hold between biscuits or wafers, ice cream that melts on your tongue, ice cream that sets you back by only 1 dollar!

Ditch fancy ice cream stores in Singapore and eat like the locals do – $1 ice creams from little carts often run by old uncles and aunties. That’s a treat you’re going to savor for a long time after your trip!

5. Singapore River Cruise But Not on A Boat

Stroll along the riverside instead.

Cruising along the Singapore River from a distance looks promising, but when you’re on there, all you see is a blur of night-lights whizzing past.

Slow down and stroll along the riverside instead, while away hours sitting by the Singapore River and watching the world go by, let the shiny lights of Clarke Quay invite you in, or find your solitude in a quiet corner by the river.