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Why this is one of the safest and easiest countries to explore in Southeast Asia


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Southeast Asia is one of the most fashionable places to travel now that the borders of the world have reopened. Famous for its beautiful beaches, dense tropical forests and delicious cuisine, the region has once again attracted millions of Western tourists.

However, the main drawback is that the entry restrictions are still quite restrictive and we are not talking about health related regulations.

Most countries on the subcontinent still require Americans to pay for a visa upon arrival, and while it’s fairly easy to obtain, the long lines at the border and filling out forms can be tricky. enough trouble.

singapore street

On top of that, some countries remain quite underdeveloped, and poor availability of services and poor urban safety indicators may discourage reluctant visitors from making the journey in the first place.

luckily there is a nation in Southeast Asia Americans are not only allowed to enter without a visa, but also where security is tight and the infrastructure is comparable, if not better, than the Western world:

Singapore is safe and easy to visit

The smallest in Southeast Asia and one of the smallest in the world, Singapore is one of the safest. and easier-to-explore countries in the region.

Marina Bay Sands in Singapore seen from across the water, Singapore, Southeast Asia

This is largely due to its friendly visa policies and high rate of development. Unlike some of its neighbors, which include Vietnam and Indonesia, it does not require Americans to apply for an eVisa or visa on arrival.

US citizens (and indeed most Westerners) can simply board a Singapore-bound flight with no requirement other than to carry a valid passport.

While they can be expected to present a one-way ticket upon arrival, which must be redeemed within 30 days of entry, they are not subject to cumbersome visa applications or excessive scrutiny at the border.

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Futuristic garden in Singapore, Southeast Asia

On top of that, Singapore is an incredibly accessible destination for North Americans and perhaps the gateway to Southeast Asia, as Changi Airport, its international airport, is a main world center host numerous daily flights from the US

From the US, nonstop flights to Singapore are available when booked through full-service Singapore Airlines, from Houston-Intercontinental, Los Angeles, Newark, New York JFK, San Francisco and Seattle/Tacoma, starting at from $841 One Way.

Expect fewer culture shocks

In addition to great connectivity, as we have already covered in our recent article on Malaysia, Singapore’s closest neighbor and the second most developed country in the neighbourhood, you start your Southeast Asia tours with ‘safer’ options may be your best bet to avoid enormous culture shocks.

Young female tourist wearing a white dress and hat while looking at the Singapore skyline in Singapore, Southeast Asia

The subcontinent is famous for its divergent etiquette, chaotic traffic, less-than-stellar amenities of its three-star hotels, particularly in less-explored regions where you can never rule out power outages or a broken air conditioner in a blistering 100-degree heat. heat, and the unknown street food.

Reports of travelers falling ill with food poisoning are becoming more common, particularly on social media, and drivers in Southeast Asia are unlikely to start complying with traffic laws any time soon. Curiously, Singapore exists in a bubble of its owndespite being firmly planted in the area.

Unlike the poorest members of the family, it enjoys high rates of development, and urban infrastructure and safety standards can be years ahead of those in the United States, not to mention the fact that a large percentage of the population He is fluent in English which makes communication easy. .

Singapore city skyline

After all, English is one of Singapore’s official languages, and Singapore is considered one of the safest tourist destinations by US authorities.

It is as safe as Iceland, Finland or any other country on your Level 1 list.

A city-state occupying a small island off the coast of Malaysia, with a population of just over 5 millionSingapore is a highly functional sovereign state boasting low crime rates, a futuristic skyline, and excellent levels of urban mobility (you can get anywhere in no time by taking the train or city buses).

The best airport for stopovers

From the moment you arrive at Singapore airport, you’ll be mesmerized by the small country’s surprising array of attractions.

The rain vortex at the Jewel in Changi Airport, Singapore

Often described as the best airport for stopovers, it has a multitude of entertainment and relaxation optionsfeaturing an indoor forest with a rain vortex, a rooftop pool with adjacent pool jacuzzi and spas, and a cinema.

Recently, the airport went so far as to launch free city tours for long-layover passengers, as long as they meet all of the criteria below:

  • Must be transit or transfer passengers at Changi Airport
  • Layover period must be greater than 5.5 hours but less than 24 (cannot exceed one day)
  • They must register upon arrival within the transit area.
  • They must present their boarding passes, a valid passport, an entry visa (if required) or alternatively an entry stamp issued by the Singapore authorities and confirmation of tour booking.
Exterior view of the jewel and a flight tower at Changi Airport in Singapore.

Arriving in the city proper, you will be mesmerized by the multiculturalism (there are more than 10 ethnic groups in Singapore) and the incredible contrast between the native Southeast Asian architecture, the British colonial monuments and the imposing, skyscrapers that defy gravity.

Whether it’s an evening stroll through the charming Chinatown district, home to some of the best street food, or a visit to the iconic Marina Bay Sands, a trio of identical hotel towers connected at the top by a 3-acre observation deck. that rests on top of the buildings, Singapore will blow your mind.

Low rates of food poisoning

When it comes to food poisoning rates, which tend to be dangerously high in other Southeast Asian nations and a major concern for American visitors, Singapore has strict food regulationscommonly followed by all food purveyors, from independently run food trucks on the back streets of Chinatown to upscale Michelin-certified restaurants.

People sit and eat Hong Kong street food

According to data shared by the Singapore Food Agencythe country had had « no more than 26 cases of foodborne illness » per 100,000 people annually for the previous three years.

By comparison, 3,147 people were hospitalized for food poisoning in Vietnam between January and December 2022, resulting in 22 deaths.

In Indonesia, where most infections originate from catering services, such as reported by the World Health Organization, thousands of tourists are affected each year.

more comfort

Finally, you should expect the same level of comfort or even greater luxury than you experience in well-developed western destinations while vacationing in Singapore.

woman drinking coffee in a hotel room

is, after all, one of the most expensive city breakson par with New York, and even hostels and other budget accommodation are pretty well-equipped (and expensive).

Staying overnight in Asia’s popular capsule hotels will cost you US$27 per night in booking.comwhile more luxurious five-star properties like the Sheraton Towers or Royal Plaza Scotts have nightly rates starting at US$244 and US$202 for August dates, respectively.

Singapore is in the middle of a ‘luxury boom‘, and as Jonathan Finnigan, director of Cher and the loneliest elephant has declared in a hollywood reporter interview, is ‘Asia for Beginners’proving once again that there is no better place to start exploring the region than the bustling city-state.

asian for beginners

Autonomous light rapid transit LRT on elevated tracks in Singapore, South East Asia

According to Finnigan, it’s ‘safe,’ ‘so organised,’ ‘English is the national language,’ and ‘everything works,’ and the number of attractions continues to rise, with 2023 expected to be the year the ultra-expected to open the luxurious Singapore Edition Hotel, as well as Artyzen Singapore.

By 2024, other openings include The Standard, Singapore and Raffles Sentosa Resort & Spa, on the resort island of Sentosa, off the mainland of Singapore.

The latter will be the country’s first villa propertywith up to 62 villas with private pools.

US and Canadian passport holders are allowed to stay in Singapore as tourists for up to 30 daysMore than enough time to get to know the city and its varied offer in depth.

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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com