One of the most well-known items banned in this list, Singapore has taken a strong stance against chewing gum since its ban in 2004. Unless it is used for medical purposes (like nicotine gum, for example), chewing gum is generally banned in Singapore. Furthermore, if you are caught selling chewing gum, you could face a penalty as high as SGD100,000.
Lighting firecrackers may be an auspicious activity for some cultures, but the loud, crackling act has been banned in Singapore since 1970, when a firecracker caused a fire that killed and injured locals. Today, Singaporeans are only able to set off firecrackers during festive seasons. If you are hoping not to miss a pyrotechnic display, be sure to travel to Singapore closer to its National Day celebrations (August 9) and witness its majestic firework display as part of the celebrations.
Despite various reports of e-cigarettes being less harmful than actual cigarettes, Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has maintained its stance on the cigarette substitute, arguing that it could be a gateway for non-smokers to get addicted to tobacco. It has been banned in Singapore since 2011, with a penalty fine of $5,000 imposed if you are caught importing or distributing it.
Yet another ban revolving around tobacco, Shisha (a method of smoking where flavour-infused tobacco is vaporised through a bong, or hookah) was officially banned in 2016 in Singapore. With popular eateries and lounges then forced to halt any import or sale of shisha within their premises, many reminisce about the relaxing, casual atmosphere shisha brought to popular areas like Arab Street.
Owning or trading exotic animals
In Singapore, it is illegal for anyone to own, breed or sell exotic breeds of amphibians, lizards or reptiles without a license. The law is enforced in a bid to protect the ecosystem and Singapore’s biodiversity. While there have been plenty of reported cases of such acts in Singapore, the trade of exotic species is still rampant and lucrative, with prices of such animals going for as high as $10,000 for a clouded tiger.
Taking durian onto public transportation
Love it or hate it, the durian splits opinion with many disagreeing when it comes to the spiky fruit. Some people find the stench so unbearable that it prompted the government to ban the king of fruits on all public buses and trains. How bad is the stench? While some laud it for its pleasantly sweet and creamy scent, others have described it to have a pungent, almost sulphur-like stench. Yes, the world is really divided on this one.
Purchasing alcohol after 10:30pm
This one’s a doozy – as of 2015, Singapore has banned the sale and consumption of alcohol in public spaces from 10:30pm to 7am. Unless a restaurant has applied for the relevant permits, it could be sentenced to a fine of up to SGD10,000 if caught selling alcohol during this timeframe. The ban came into effect after a riot took place at Race Course Road due to a public disorder caused by excessive drinking. However, this is a great excuse to invite your friends over and take the party inside instead.