Places to seek out most cost-effective meals in Singapore, in accordance with Makan Index 2.0


SINGAPORE — The worth of consuming out in Singapore is inclined to proceed to rise relative to specific individual and household incomes ultimately, in accordance with an Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) report on meals prices proper right here launched on Monday (March 13).

The researchers obtained right here to this conclusion after amassing information on the costs of meals objects and meals at hawker centres, kopitiams and foodcourts from September to November 2022, and January to February 2023.

They found variations in meals prices all through areas in addition to the two time intervals, with notable will enhance in prices for 13 out of 18 meals objects throughout the second interval.

It is the second time that the IPS is doing a analysis on meals prices proper right here, to present you with what it has referred to because the Makan Index 2.0. The last analysis was printed in 2017.

The group checked out prices of 18 meals and drinks objects or models typically provided on the meals establishments all through the three day-to-day meals, comparable to kopi-o, wanton noodles, monetary beehoon set or rooster chop.

They visited 829 meals establishments — 92 hawker centres, 101 foodcourts and 636 kopitiams — all through 26 residential neighbourhoods.

The analysis, led by evaluation fellow Teo Kay Key with evaluation assistants Hanniel Lim and Mindy Chong, is aimed towards surveying meals prices as an answer to greater understand a side of the costs of residing in Singapore. However, it well-known that the prices of meals objects have been taken at face price, with out adjusting for quantity or prime quality.

The report recognized that the five-yearly household expenditure survey by the Department of Statistics found that meals constituted 20.3 per cent of a household’s frequent expenditure in 2017 and 2018, the second-largest aspect after housing and its related expenditure (28.9 per cent).


The survey moreover confirmed that of meals spending, merely over half was spent at hawker centres, foodcourts and low retailers in addition to associated establishments comparable to canteens, kiosks and avenue distributors.

“This is testament to the prevalence of Singapore’s unique hawker culture, which has enabled many Singaporeans to eat out at affordable prices. However, living costs, especially that of food, have become a common concern in many parts of the world,” talked about the report.

It well-known present developments such as a result of the Russia-Ukraine warfare, the mid-2022 ban on rooster exports from Malaysia to Singapore, and the rise in gadgets and firms tax proper right here which have impacted meals prices.

Comparing the data collected over the two time intervals, the researchers found that almost all stall householders didn’t enhance their prices, whereas a majority of people who did did so by solely a small margin.

The researchers well-known that as a consequence of manpower and time constraints, they didn’t revisit all the establishments from the first spherical of information assortment and returned to solely 50 of the 829 distinctive web sites.

The frequent will enhance in prices at these revisited stalls didn’t exceed 30 cents, and didn’t go above 10 cents for a lot of meals objects, they found.

The outcomes

Comparing prices all through areas of their complete information, the researchers found variations for 9 out of 18 of the meals and drinks surveyed.

Drinks and rooster chop have been found to be cheaper throughout the central space. The breakfast set — comprising kaya toast, two soft-boiled eggs and low or tea — and fishball noodles have been found to be most cost-effective throughout the north, whereas prata was found to be cheaper throughout the west.

In phrases of meals and drinks objects, kopi-o was the most value efficient drink on frequent at $1.09 whereas iced Milo was the most costly at $1.81.

Two pratas — one plain and one egg — have been the most value efficient at $2.97 on frequent, whereas rooster chop was the most costly at $7.58.

Foodcourts often had the perfect prices, adopted by kopitiams after which hawker centres.


The report found that meals objects that didn’t observe this improvement have been the breakfast set — most cost-effective in hawker centres, whereas costing the equivalent in kopitiams and foodcourts; the vegetarian beehoon set — most cost-effective in hawker centres, adopted by foodcourts after which kopitiams; in addition to rooster rice and monetary rice — most cost-effective in kopitiams, adopted by hawker centres after which foodcourts.

Looking at meals — comprising a drink and a essential meals dish — on frequent, breakfast was the most value efficient meal at $4.81, adopted by lunch at $6.01 after which dinner at $6.20.

The full frequent worth of three meals a day in hawker centres, foodcourts and kopitiams was $16.89, talked about the report.

Based on this decide, the everyday worth of consuming out for a month of 30 days is $506.70. Meal costs on frequent didn’t differ significantly all through areas.

Here are among the many totally different numbers:

  • Cheapest breakfast meal ($2): Bukit Panjang, Toa Payoh and Jurong West (breakfast set) and Toa Payoh (kopi-o and nasi lemak)
  • Cheapest lunch meal ($2): Toa Payoh (kopi-o and nasi lemak) and Sembawang (iced canned drink with vegetarian beehoon)
  • Cheapest dinner meal ($2.80): Jurong East (kopi-o with fishball noodles)
  • Most expensive breakfast meal ($9.50): Bishan (kopi with wanton noodles)
  • Most expensive lunch and dinner meal ($14.90): Queenstown (iced Milo with rooster briyani), Tampines (iced Milo with rooster briyani or rooster chop).


The report found that complete, whereas some dishes like monetary rice and fishball noodles keep comparatively cheap, costing beneath $4 on frequent, totally different widespread dishes like rooster rice and wanton noodles exhibit a lots larger price fluctuate.

The group attributed this to a degree to an rising number of stalls which will be not selling standard selections, or which promote typically found dishes like rooster rice with a pricier twist, indicating dynamism and innovation in native meals custom.

The analysis concluded that the value of consuming out in Singapore is inclined to proceed to rise relative to specific individual and household incomes ultimately.

It talked about: “The hope is that precise wages will enhance at associated expenses; if not, individuals and households will face higher meals costs.

“While hawker culture in Singapore is an essential and convenient source of hot, delicious meals for Singaporeans, it may no longer be able to remain as cheap relative to other meal options, given the changes in the economic environment.”

ALSO READ: Hawker accuses diners of ‘screaming’ and shaming his staff over request for extra bowls

This article was first printed in The Straits Times. Permission required for copy.

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