Taking Money to Singapore for 7 day Tour


We (2A+2C) are visiting Singapore for 7 days next month.where to buy Singapore dollar with indian currency to meet the expenses at Singapore?of course i have to convert my Indian currency in India only due to RBI limit of 10000/- on carrying indian currency outside the country.
Which is better option converting indian currency to SGD or USD?And which is best money changer in India for the same?
What do you suggest on usage of Debit card for getting SGD from ATM's in Singapore?Is it costlier than converting indian currency to SGD?
Is pre-paid travel card or traveller cheque is better option and has less conversion charges?
Is it better and cheaper for me to take US $ and exchange it to S $ on reaching there?.


Super User
I am referring to RBI limit of carrying indian currency outside country which is 10000/- per person.Yes we can take $10,000 in USD dollars
Okay.. The limit of a meagre INR10000 does not make any sense. Anyways, thats not to be debated here.
It would be better to carry USD. And get them converted into SGD there. USD to SGD conversion should be pretty easy and convenient there instead of INR to SGD. BCMT Singapore members should be able to advise.

As for money changer, search in your local area. Make sure to get proper receipt of transaction from them and fill a form that they would submit to RBI (AFAIK).
Using credit/debit cards will come out to be more expensive and its risky too.

No personal experience with travellers cheque so cannot comment on them.

Big Daddy

Super User
Here is what I would do if I were you. Not that I know much about Singapore dollar but mathematically it makes sense. Assume that you pay 2% service charge (due to unfavorable conversion rate), converting Rupee to US dollar and then convering US dollar to Singaporean dollars is going to make you worse off compared to converting Indian Rupee to Singapore dollar. However, that is the part of the story as you want to be able to convert excess money that you bring back to India back to Rupees.

I would estimate what I would likely bring back to India and convert that money into US dollars, and what ever my estimated expenses in Singapore are to Singapore dollars (i.e., both). The US dollars are surplus that I don't aim on spending but can be used in case of emergency. US dollar is a stable currency, so if you travel a lot then even after you return to India, you don't have to convert them back to Indian Rupees. Just hold on to it and use it next time you travel outside India.


Super Moderator
Staff member
The best way to carry foreign exchange for trips abroad is to get a Foreign Travel Card made from any bank. I've been using SBI.
You can load a specific currency to it, in your case Singapore Dollars.
The card can be made for each traveller and each would be allowed to carry equivalent of USD 10,000/-.
Also, for cash withdrawals from ATM machines abroad this is the most cost effective method, with a transaction charge of only USD 2, or less in some cases.
This is by far the best way to carry travel money.
Almost all establishments accept this card for payment. This card will not work for car rentals, where a credit card is de rigueur. Online shopping cannot be done with this card.
Please check the details on the SBI site: https://prepaid.onlinesbi.com/sbiviswa.html

And please do not carry USD; that will always entail conversion charges and you'll lose.
If you do carry any USD the best place to change them to local currency is usually Mustafa Centre.

Rohit Kothari

Super User
+1 to what Anup sir said above. No point converting to USD and then to SGD. You will only lose out.
Better to take travel card. Almost all banks are providing these in the currency you want.
Using ATM's and credit cards issued in India would be costly. Apart from comparatively lower conversion rates you will also entail other charges on both CC and DC.

My advice would be to get a travel card issued. Carry a CC for something like a car rental and for backup. No need to carry debit card in case you take travel card.


From https://rbi.org.in/scripts/FAQView.aspx?Id=53
Q. 19. How much Indian currency can a person carry while going abroad?
Ans. Residents are free to take outside India (other than to Nepal and Bhutan) currency notes of Government of India and Reserve Bank of India notes up to an amount not exceeding Rs. 10,000 - per person. They may take or send outside India (other than to Nepal and Bhutan) commemorative coins not exceeding two coins each.

* No point converting to USD. INR to SGD conversion is best way. Why to give double commission.

* Conversion rate in India is pretty bad (worst at airport)
Mustafa in Little India offers best rate. But you may not be able to convert much here due to limit on carrying INR outside India
check rates here and compare yourself
Mustafa selling a dollar at 49rs today

If you strike a deal with some one and get a better rate in India, go for it.

* + to Anup Sir, Foreign travel cards are safest and hassle free way. Check their conversion rate. This may be a bit costly though (depends on bank rate in India)
But be aware some banks may levy charge on money withdrawal from other bank ATMs (ICICI has charged me once)
SBI and ICICI ATMs are not located everywhere in Singapore. I heard DBS started working in India. Check if they offer something more fancy as DBS is Singapore's local bank.
Check terms and conditions from bank


Super Moderator
Staff member
But be aware some banks may levy charge on money withdrawal from other bank ATMs (ICICI has charged me once)
SBI and ICICI ATMs are not located everywhere in Singapore. I heard DBS started working in India. Check if they offer something more fancy as DBS is Singapore's local bank.
Check terms and conditions from bank
Ankur, I have been using SBI Foreign Travel Cards (FTC) and they represent by far the best solution.
Cash withdrawals with FTC from ANY bank's ATM (these cards are VISA partnered) are permitted and there is a fixed charge per withdrawal. The charge is as low as USD 1.5 or equivalent and the limit for cash withdrawal is about USD 2000/- (in local currency equivalent) per day. You do not have to look for an Indian bank's ATM. There cannot be a better deal than this. Right after each transaction you will receive an SMS on your registered mobile phone; as well as an email. You can constantly verify what you have been charged (ie what has been debited from your prepaid FTC and the balance remaining); there are no surprises at the end of the month!
SBI loads your FTC at prevailing RBI rate for the particular currency on that date. No cheating or poor rate there!
I have mentioned what cannot be done with these cards - car rentals and online shopping. All restaurants and stores accept these cards; I have never been told "Sorry Sir, this card will not work"!