Shopping in Singapore can be an enjoyable experience, but it can also be overwhelming if you’re not familiar with the local language. Singapore is a multicultural city-state that boasts a diverse shopping scene, from luxury malls to local markets. In this context, being able to speak English is crucial as it is one of the four official languages of Singapore and is widely spoken and understood by locals. In this blog, we’ll cover six essential phrases in English that will help you communicate effectively while shopping in Singapore.
#1: “Where is the nearest mall?”
Singapore is home to some of the largest and most impressive malls in the world, and it’s easy to get lost in their maze-like structures. If you’re unsure where to start, ask a local “Where is the nearest mall?” and they’ll be happy to point you in the right direction.
#2: “Can you recommend any good stores for [type of item]?”
Whether you’re looking for electronics, fashion, or souvenirs, Singapore has it all. To ensure you find the best stores for the items you’re after, ask a local “Can you recommend any good stores for [type of item]?” They will likely have great suggestions that cater to your needs.
#3: “How much does this cost?”
When shopping in Singapore, it’s essential to know the price of items you’re interested in to avoid overspending. To ask for the price, say “How much does this cost?” to the salesperson. Keep in mind that Singapore is known for its high prices, so don’t be surprised if things are more expensive than you’re used to.
#4: “Do you have this in a different size/colour?”
It’s not uncommon for stores to run out of stock or have limited sizes or colours available. If you’re not able to find the size or colour you’re looking for, ask the salesperson “Do you have this in a different size/colour?” They’ll either point you in the right direction or check with their stockroom to see if they have what you’re looking for.
#5: “Can I return this if it doesn’t fit?”
It’s important to know the store’s return policy before making a purchase, especially if you’re buying clothing or shoes. If you’re unsure of the store’s policy, ask the salesperson “Can I return this if it doesn’t fit?” to avoid any misunderstandings.
#6: “Do you accept credit/debit cards?”
Cash is king in Singapore, but most stores do accept credit and debit cards. If you’re unsure if a store accepts cards, ask the salesperson “Do you accept credit/debit cards?” to avoid any awkward moments at the checkout.
Learn Basic English in Singapore
If you’re planning to visit Singapore but are not confident in your English proficiency, you can learn the basics by taking an English course for adults in Singapore. English learning classes like these can help you improve your communication skills and make your shopping experience much smoother.
As a leading English language school in Singapore, United Language Centre offers a range of English classes for kids and adults alike. Our courses are designed to help you learn the fundamentals of the language and improve your conversational skills. Our experienced teachers provide individualised attention and personalised feedback.
Being able to communicate effectively in English is crucial when shopping in Singapore. By knowing these essential phrases, you’ll be able to navigate the local shopping scene with ease and avoid any misunderstandings. Remember, a little effort goes a long way in making your shopping experience in Singapore a memorable one.