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Old 18th August 2010, 19:06   #31
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Thanks Thad.
That 5000 is what I was talking about!
Incidentally, I carry around 2000 bucks with me when I go abroad as INR. That's purely for taxi / Rickshaw and emergency expenses once I land back in India. I never go to an ATM or money exchange in the airport. Helps a lot as you are groggy after travelling across timezones and are not sensitized of the Indian hoodlums in the airport and the road.

Rest all currency is minimal only for first day expense in USD. All else is Traveller's cheques which I encash upon reaching the destination country as and when needed.
Sometimes when the exchange rate is rock bottom, I retain the travellers cheques and swipe my Indian credit card! I can enchash the travellers cheques upon coming back to India!
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Old 18th August 2010, 19:20   #32
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Frankly, most foreign tourists don't worry about still having a few hundred Rs with them when they leave, and are glad to have the price of the taxi with them for their next return.

A few exchange larger amounts into Rs abroad and bring here.

Is it legal? Certainly not. Are they likely to be caught? I guess not --- but if they happened to attract the attention of customs and get searched, the currency would certainly get added to the list of problems!
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Old 18th August 2010, 19:43   #33
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My brother was travelling abroad and the stupid airlines asked him to pay some extra amount for some change in airport taxes or something like that. Now he doesn't have a single rupee. The airport doesn't accept foreign credit cards.
They asked him to pay in INR. When he said he doesn't carry INR, they asked him why.
He angrily replied that it's an international multi city ticket booked earlier and he doesn't need to pay a single rupee above what's he's already paid and the fact that when leaving India he can't carry Indian currency, due to which he's not having any with him!
So after 40 minutes of discussions the checkin counter guy had with his superior, they said he need not pay and had him checked in.
He'd commenced his journey before these jokers increased some fee and taxes and asked him to pay some amount when he was crossing India as a stop over!
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Old 25th August 2010, 04:21   #34
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Am just a couple of days far from taking off, and everyone here has been so helpful with their thoughts and suggestions. Thanks for that. Now I have my tickets, insurance, a service apartment, booked cabs, etc and all set. However, as with a perennial planner, some things keep lingering in mind which am putting down below. Though, as always, I have tried google to sustainable levels and then tried to ask whatever remains. Thanks in advance...

1) Have prepared a list of restaurants where we can be sure of veggie fare:
- Komala Vilas
- Banana leaf
- Tandoori corner
- Riverwalk Tandoor
- Anand Bhawan

This is purely on basis of googling, except KomalaVilas which has been recommended on this forum as well. Pls provide your inputs on the rest, or even better, add any other eatery which one may have experienced and liked.

2) Is Escape theme park and Snow city worth the time? Any comments..?

3) Heard it rains alot in there. So what do people do during that time? Just snap an umbrella and roam around freely in the zoo or bird park? I mean, with such regular rainfall, one will miss out on quite a few attractions given a limited time period. Aint so?

4) How strict are SG customs guys? Am thinking of taking some Ready-to-eat stuff (MTR vegetables etc. - microwavable). Do they allow that, or just like the villainous chewing-gum, stack that out?

5) The kid inside me awakened to the desire of getting a Wii from SG. Anyone knows a place where i can *initially* play it (for trial purposes) and then buy? Any particular shop with good prices on consoles?

6) Anyone used HiPPo tours? Are they worth it, and actually help in covering the whole city in a day?

7) Any attractions in SG, like Universal, need advanced booking? Or i can just go to different places and will easily get tickets?

Cheers n thnx

Last edited by maverickzCar : 25th August 2010 at 04:23.
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Old 25th August 2010, 04:45   #35
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Here are my answers to some of your queries:

1. You can add Saravanaa Bhavan in the list. They have one in Little India. For more details, please visit:

Saravanaa Bhavan - Restaurants

2. I have not visited them. So, no comments.

3. During my last visit last year, it was raining intermittently. Everybody managed with umbrellas. No worries.

4. You can carry plenty of food stuff. No worries. Just walk though. SG customs won't bother you.

5. You can try it at Mustafa, Little India or Funon DigitalLife Mall. I heard horror stories about Sim Lim Square.

6. I didn't try it. So, no comments.

7. No advance booking is required. Just go and get it.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 25th August 2010 at 04:48.
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Old 25th August 2010, 09:08   #36
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Quote:
2) Is Escape theme park and Snow city worth the time? Any comments..?
Depends on what you like. I skipped both these places and wifey came back with a big face after she went there.

Quote:
) Heard it rains alot in there. So what do people do during that time? Just snap an umbrella and roam around freely in the zoo or bird park?
Yeah it does and when I was there Orchard street was flooded. Carry an umbrella that should do.

Quote:
4) How strict are SG customs guys? Am thinking of taking some Ready-to-eat stuff (MTR vegetables etc. - microwavable). Do they allow that, or just like the villainous chewing-gum, stack that out?
Not an issue at the customs, they let you carry food stuff from here. Chewing gums yeah you said it.

Quote:
6) Anyone used HiPPo tours? Are they worth it, and actually help in covering the whole city in a day?
You are better off doing it all by yourself. I find these city tours a rip off at times.Pick up a MRT card and you can visit most of the places. For short distances use the taxi.

Quote:
7) Any attractions in SG, like Universal, need advanced booking? Or i can just go to different places and will easily get tickets?
For Universal Studios you can book it online from India itself. I went there on a Monday and couldn't get tickets.The earlier the better methinks.
Other places you shouldn't have any problems with the tickets. Try and book tickets for the FLYER and other places online. They usually have good discounts for tourists.
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Old 25th August 2010, 15:43   #37
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Ananda Bhavan was our daily regular. They have several branches. It is simple, but clean and cheap. It is South Indian.

In ten days we only had one real monsoon-type soaker of a rainstorm, but it is not a bad idea to keep umbrellas with you.

I'm sure you'll have checked out all the major tourist attractions online, so you should already be aware of good deals for combination tickets. Some deals, however, you may not be aware of without being there. My wife got free entry to the bird park, for he birthday, and we got a discount on the Flyer for using a Royal Bank of Scotland card.
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Old 26th August 2010, 21:49   #38
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Thanks guys.

Anyone has experience with using Axis Bank Travel Card for shopping online in Singapore. I was thinking of using it for purchasing attraction tickets like Universal, Zoo park hopper etc. over the net. Is it advisable (or not)?
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Old 27th August 2010, 02:31   #39
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And one of really last things...

Can i carry heart-related medicines in carry-in and declare to customs? Will they understand or misunderstand it for something sinister?? Anyone got an experience with SG customs related to this? Since SG has a strict drug policy, is there a problem with carrying medicines also (stuff like Ecosprin, etc.)?
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Old 27th August 2010, 05:06   #40
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You don't need to declare if you are carrying medicines. If you can, just carry the prescription.
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Old 27th August 2010, 05:50   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maverickzCar View Post
Thanks guys.

Anyone has experience with using Axis Bank Travel Card for shopping online in Singapore. I was thinking of using it for purchasing attraction tickets like Universal, Zoo park hopper etc. over the net. Is it advisable (or not)?
The travel currency cards [Axis Bank or any other bank] cannot be used for online shopping. They can used for shopping by swiping only.
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Originally Posted by maverickzCar View Post
And one of really last things...

Can i carry heart-related medicines in carry-in and declare to customs? Will they understand or misunderstand it for something sinister?? Anyone got an experience with SG customs related to this? Since SG has a strict drug policy, is there a problem with carrying medicines also (stuff like Ecosprin, etc.)?
You can carry medicines along with prescriptions. No worries.
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Old 27th August 2010, 06:33   #42
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Quote:
1) Have prepared a list of restaurants where we can be sure of veggie fare:
- Komala Vilas
- Banana leaf
- Tandoori corner
- Riverwalk Tandoor
- Anand Bhawan

This is purely on basis of googling, except KomalaVilas which has been recommended on this forum as well. Pls provide your inputs on the rest, or even better, add any other eatery which one may have experienced and liked.

2) Is Escape theme park and Snow city worth the time? Any comments..?

3) Heard it rains alot in there. So what do people do during that time? Just snap an umbrella and roam around freely in the zoo or bird park? I mean, with such regular rainfall, one will miss out on quite a few attractions given a limited time period. Aint so?

4) How strict are SG customs guys? Am thinking of taking some Ready-to-eat stuff (MTR vegetables etc. - microwavable). Do they allow that, or just like the villainous chewing-gum, stack that out?

5) The kid inside me awakened to the desire of getting a Wii from SG. Anyone knows a place where i can *initially* play it (for trial purposes) and then buy? Any particular shop with good prices on consoles?

6) Anyone used HiPPo tours? Are they worth it, and actually help in covering the whole city in a day?

7) Any attractions in SG, like Universal, need advanced booking? Or i can just go to different places and will easily get ticke
1. If you are in and around Suntec City, Add the following restaurants

1. Phangat, Suntec City
2. Bombay Cafe, Suntect City
3. Anandha Bhavan @ Airport Terminal 2 Departure lounge
4. There is a Indian outlet @ zoo foodcourt, you get veg there aswell
5. Copper Chiminey, If you like Indian Chinese


3) Heard it rains alot in there. So what do people do during that time? Just snap an umbrella and roam around freely in the zoo or bird park? I mean, with such regular rainfall, one will miss out on quite a few attractions given a limited time period. Aint so?

Rains a lot. Just carry an Umbrella round always.

5) The kid inside me awakened to the desire of getting a Wii from SG. Anyone knows a place where i can *initially* play it (for trial purposes) and then buy? Any particular shop with good prices on consoles?

You can try it out @ Carrefour Suntec and bargain for prices at Funan Digital Mall/Simlim. I guess Funan has a lot of camera shops. I think SImlim would be better.

7) Any attractions in SG, like Universal, need advanced booking? Or i can just go to different places and will easily get ticke

Better to book in advance.


Don't worry have fun. you will never have seen such an organized city. I have pm'ed my number. Please reach out if you need any help.
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Old 27th August 2010, 15:36   #43
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I would take a prescription for any medicines you carry, and even simple everyday stuff it is better to get there according to your need (Mustapha has a good medicine section, by the way).

I was quite annoyed with my wife for taking all her herbal medicines --- with a prescription in Tamil. Well, at least I know now that there is no problem, in Singapore, with finding people who read and speak Tamil, but one never knows what is in traditional medicines and the authorities are 150% strict.
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Old 28th August 2010, 01:22   #44
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Oops! My bad! After going a dozen times thru my excel i missed out one important thing... Universal!!! How could i forget what to do and what to avoid there? Too bad...or too much planning...dunno! So Sirs, for the nth time, could you enlighten me to the following:

- What to do, and what to avoid at Universal Singapore? We have kept one day only for Universal theme park. Would prefer an easy going schedule which covers the best (including rides & shows) and ignores the not-so-great.
- Again, any restaurants inside the park which serve stuff for veggie survivors?

Net has so many dos-and-donts for Universal US parks, but not much for Sing one. Thus this need for a first hand point of view.

Lastly, i cant appreciate much a wonderfully knowledgeable and supportive crowd here! Cheers T-BHP!

Btw, Evo, ur suggestion was great. I had a look at those scooters on zoo site and they are the perfect antidote i was looking for. Thanks bro.

Last edited by maverickzCar : 28th August 2010 at 01:28.
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