Singapore Business Tips

Singapore can be as easy for the businessman as it is for the tourist. Business generally conforms to western style practices, without the "funny business" that can plague business dealings in many other countries in the region. The most common mistake is assuming that easy success in Singapore will lead to equally easy success elsewhere in the region. Many a company has done well in Singapore only to fail miserably in Malaysia or Thailand.

Time & Working Hours

Normal business hours are the same in Singapore as in most other countries. Unlike many neighboring countries, it is now quite unusual for offices to operate on Saturdays. One point visitors may wish to keep in mind is that, with its multi-ethnic population, Singapore celebrates the major holidays of many different cultures and religions.

Business Cards

It is absolutely essential that you have business cards when visiting Singapore on business. As in most of Asia, business cards are treated with a bit of ritual. Present your business card with both hands, holding at the top corners so that the recipient can read it. Receive other people's cards with both hands as well. It's best to spend some time reading the card, and if seated at a desk or table, you should keep the card on the table as you talk.


Most businesses observe somewhat formal Western style dress codes. Dress shirts and ties are standard for almost all male employees. Full suits (with jackets) are common for business meetings.

Business Hotels & Meetings

Singapore is so easy to get around in that where you stay is not as important as it might be in other Southeast Asian business centers. Even so, we have drawn up a list of some suggested Singapore business hotels for you to consider.

Singapore's central location makes it an excellent destination for business meetings. It's roughly an equal travel time from the other major business centers of Southeast Asia, and Singapore's status as a major air travel hub generally means there are several competitively priced flights for attendees to choose from.

Business Lounges

As rewarding as Singapore can be for business, leaving the city can be almost as pleasant. Changi Airport is a businessman's dream, with a full range of services, as well as business lounges designed with the modern "road warrior" business person in mind.