Singapore loses its charm for career oriented expats

Singapore loses its charm for career oriented expats

Singapore loses its charm for career oriented expats

Is Singapore the next career hub to suffer an expat exodus?

Many expat professionals in Singapore are finding their lives have changed beyond recognition djue to the coronavirus. Whilst the city state is still a popular destination for the career-minded, its appeal has been lessened by measures put in place in an attempt to slow the advance of covid19 infections and deaths.

As the dire news broke in late January, last-minute decisions were made and a slew of expat professionals booked the last flights out to their home countries. Most of those leaving had arrived with the expectation of furthering their careers along with taking full advantage of the offered lifestyle and the salary which allowed it. After the pandemic struck, the glamour of the city faded along with the chance to enjoy exotic weekends on nearby islands or even the Thai tourist resort of Phuket.

Once weekend travel was impossible, loved ones back at home seemed even further away and the fear of being confined in a place where English isn’t much spoken and the government isn’t interested in expat issues became too much. Looking ahead, many expat professionals forsaw a shrinking economy and resulting jobs losses and decided now was the time to repatriate. In addition, the shift towards employing locals rather than expats was getting stronger, mostly because local workers are cheaper to hire.

Nowadays, contracts including hefty sums for international schools, luxury housing and smart cars aren’t as popular with employers fearing a recession or even closure due to the pandemic. For expat professionals unsure of where to go next, one thing’s for certain in that political stability, a strong medical infrastructure and safety is now far more a priority than in past times.

Some are considering new kids on the expat block such as the Philippines or Vietnam, with others simply opting to go home and stay for a while, whilst others are examining the possibility of being able to afford a mortgage on a home country property, thus buying security as well as the chance of capital appreciation in the long run. However, one thing’s for certain in that expats who’ve fled back to the home country will miss their former lives, but whether they’ll ever take a chance and emigrate again is another question.

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