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'You trying to compare to locals?' Expat shares his $5,000 monthly expenditure, gets criticised for showing off

'You trying to compare to locals?' Expat shares his $5,000 monthly expenditure, gets criticised for showing off
PHOTO: TikTok/Certified_GMO

Singapore is known to be an expensive place to live in and the rising cost of living and rental rates aren't making it easier. 

However, one expat from the United States said he makes it work for under $5,000 a month, sharing that he lives in a one-bedder condo and even has money to go on frequent overseas trips. 

In a TikTok video uploaded on Thursday (Feb 9), Gregory Andrle, who has lived in Singapore for around seven years, gave a quick summary of his monthly expenditure. 

He currently resides in a one-bedroom condo at Aljunied and altogether, his rent, water and electricity bills come up to $2,100 a month, he said.

Food-wise, he reckoned he spends about $700 on drinks, GrabFood and eating out every month.

"Hawker food is my vice," he added. 


Additionally, he said he spends $300 on groceries and other miscellaneous items. 

Andrle, who works in a software company, also shared how the costs of his gym memberships which add up to $200 a month. 

In total, his transportation costs, which include both public transport and Grab, are $400. 

Additionally, he said he even sets aside about $1,000 every month for travel. 

However, there were some sour netizens who accused Andrle of comparing himself to locals, with one adding that as an expat, he is probably earning more than Singaporeans. 

Another also accused him of complaining, asking him to return to the US.

But Andrle clarified that he is very happy in Singapore and was simply just sharing his experiences. He also told AsiaOne that he tries not to dwell on the hate comments.

On the other hand, there were a number of netizens who pointed out that his monthly expenditure is a "realistic" amount, with some expressing surprise over how low Andrle's rental is. 

Several were also shocked that Andrle travels monthly. 

Andrle told AsiaOne that his expenditure is "roughly" around the same every month but it can vary at times according to his work and travel schedules. 

He admitted that initially, he did think the amount was "significantly higher" in comparison to what he was used to back home in the US. 

But the longer he lived in Singapore, the more he felt like it was acceptable.  

"Initially, I felt like it was a lot compared to my life in the US, especially when going out for social activities, taking taxis et cetera," he said. 

"[However], I got used to it after a while and now I think it is all right for Singapore. It depends on the individual person's lifestyle and earnings though." 

He also noted that because the taxes in Singapore are considerably lower than the US, he tends to spend more, but also has more opportunities to save as well. 

So, why Singapore?

Andrle tells us that growing up in the US, he didn't have many opportunities to travel outside of the country and spent most of his vacations doing road trips. 

"I was looking for a chance to get out of my comfort zone and experience a different culture by working and living abroad," he said, adding that his employer had told him about the opportunity for an overseas transfer to Singapore. 

"Admittedly, I wasn't even sure where Singapore was located at that point, but I agreed to take the role and move overseas," he shared.

"Overall, it has been an awesome experience and I'm super grateful for Singapore and the people I've met here, Thanks Singapore!" 

ALSO READ: 25-year-old expat in Singapore spends close to $1,000 a day, has netizens questioning her job

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