The Johor-Singapore Causeway records some of the highest traffics in the world. Every day, around 300,000 Malaysians crossed the 1.056-kilometre bridge into Singapore. Additionally, Singaporeans made up the biggest bulk of foreign visitors in Malaysia in 2019.
Aside from geographical reasons, the high crossovers between these two neighbouring countries could be due to the currency difference. The exchange rate of Singapore Dollar (SGD) to Malaysian Ringgit (MYR) as of Sept 21, 2023 is SGD1 to MYR3.46.
This location proximity allows for Malaysian residents who want to earn more to cross the border for income. For example, a Malaysian who earns SGD3,200 gets to take back home MYR11,074.88 in Malaysia to spend.
People living in Singapore could drive across the Causeway for 30 minutes from the Woodlands checkpoint to Johor Bahru to stretch their money, shopping for goods or just spending their day here.
If you’re planning to travel to Malaysia from Singapore, it may come in handy to know where you should convert your money for the best rates, especially when you do it often.
Understanding How Currency Exchange Works
The price of a currency is changing every day as it is being traded on the market. The price is derived based on the supply and demand for it at a given moment and is kept standard around the world.
Money changers would take the price and adjust it a little so they would earn profit on the transaction. For example, the rate of converting SGD to MYR is 3.50. This means that you can buy MYR 3.50 for SGD 1.
The money changer would then adjust the rate according to how much fees they would want to charge. If they would like to charge 5 cents on each dollar, then they would adjust the rate to 3.45, which means that you can buy MYR 3.45 with SGD 1. After all, money changers are just like any other business that needs to make a profit.
There are several places where you can exchange your money including money changers shopping malls, hotels, airports or banks. Money changers at shopping malls, hotels, train stations and airports all offer different rates. In shopping malls, sometimes we see long lines of queue formed outside certain money changers while it’s all quiet for other changers. This is perhaps because the money changer with a long line offers a better rate.
You can change your money at the bank but there will be a fee. It’s important to do your research and compare which place lets you change your money cheaper, especially if you plan to buy larger ticket items when in Malaysia.
Where To Get The Best Rates: Should You Convert Your SGD Before Leaving Singapore Or In Malaysia?
SGD is a strong currency hence, converting SGD into MYR in Malaysia could get you a good rate as it’s widely traded.
In addition, cheaper operating costs for money changers in Malaysia compared to those in Singapore means that there’s a possibility they would charge a lower fee on transactions, making it more affordable to exchange SGD into MYR in Malaysia.
List Of Money Changers And Rates Offered
|Money Changer In Singapore
|Golden Horse Prize, Paya Lebar||1:3.42|
|Vision Exchange, Tampines||1:3.42|
|JC Global, Yishun||1:3.42|
|Fairfield Exchange, Great World City||1:3.42|
|Chynge Singapore, Bugis||1:3.42|
|JC Global, Bugis||1:3.42|
|Capital Forex, Bukit Batok||1:3.42|
|JC Global, Choa Chu Kang||1:3.42|
|Silver River, Marina Square||1:3.42|
|Dollar Exchange, Jurong West||1:3.42|
|Hassan & Sons, Ang Mo Kio||1:3.42|
|Robinson, Ang Mo Kio||1:3.42|
|Shafeek Exchange, Northpoint||1:3.43|
|JC Global, Paya Lebar||1:3.43|
|Vision Exchange, Ubi Avenue||1:3.43|
|JL Union Garments Enterprises, Clarke Quay||1:3.43|
|Fiat, Raffles Place||1:3.43|
|$&C Xchange Centre (The Arcade), Raffles Place||1:3.43|
|Eng Loke, Raffles Place||1:3.43|
|ZeroEx, Woodlands North||1:3.43|
|Money Changer In Malaysia||SGD:MYR
|Merchantrade Asia, Sabah||1:3.32|
|Merchantrade Asia, Senawang||1:3.35|
|Merchantrade Asia, KL||1:3.37|
|Merchantrade Asia, Subang Jaya||1:3.37|
|Merchantrade Asia, Damansara||1:3.37|
|Suria Muhabat, Penang||1:3.38|
|United Global FX, Malacca||1:3.39|
|Antara Duit Avenue K, KL||1:3.40|
|Antara Duit Tun Razak, KL||1:3.40|
|Merchantrade Asia, Johor||1:3.40|
|Jalinan Duta Nu Sentral, KL||1:3.41|
|Max Money, KL||1:3.41|
|KL Remit Xchange, KL||1:3.41|
|Max Money, Johor||1:3.41|
|Antara Duit, Shah Alam||1:3.41|
|Jalinan Duta KL Sentral, KL||1:3.42|
|Max Money 2, KL||1:3.42|
From the tables above, the most favourable rate is offered by money changers in Kuala Lumpur, Jalinan Duta KL Sentral and Max Money 2 at 3.42. Meanwhile, the exchange rates offered by money changers in Singapore hover between 3.42 and 3.43.
As mentioned, locations seem to influence the exchange rates. The rates offered by two money changers located in Johor – Max Money and Merchantrade Asia – tend to be on the higher side at 3.40 and 3.41. This is probably due to the higher demand for SGD in the state that is closest to Singapore.
Verdict: It’s All About How Convenient It Will Be For You And Where You Will Be Headed
Due to low operational cost, Malaysian money changers could possibly charge a lower fee on transactions than Singapore money changers who have a higher overhead cost. However, converting your money early on means that you have more time to survey the rates and get it out of the way.
Otherwise, you may need to spend your day scrambling and finding a money changer that offers a good rate in Malaysia. In Sabah, where the rates are not so favourable, you might consider doing your research online and change your money beforehand when there’s a good rate.
In addition, it’s always good to prepare some MYR beforehand so your pockets are not empty when you arrive in Malaysia.
Featured Image Credit: Suria Muhabat
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