Man Bought Cai Png for $20.50 in Australia & S’poreans Didn’t Complain


Another piece of news about Cai Png, another article comments on its absurdly high price.

But wait, this is in Australia, and netizens are surprisingly chill with it?

$20.50 Is Okay Lah

If you didn’t order many premium side dishes yet got charged $20 for cai png in Singapore, people will agree that that’s ridiculous and smoothen the bruise on your wallet by sharing your rage.

And online, people either share your anger or sensible netizens will tell you to move on and don’t patronise the store again. Past instances have proven this again and again.

But one has stood out among the rest.

One, where being charged $20.50 is considered normal. No, the world is not going insane, and you’re not poor. It’s just that you’re now in Australia.

@gilbertzhuo #caifan #sg #food ♬ original sound – Gilbert Zhuo

A TikTok video posted by gilbertzhuo shared that the average price for cai png in Australia outside of the central business district cost around AUD$20 (SGD $18).

If you didn’t already know, prices for dining there are higher as compared to Singapore. It isn’t that surprising to take in when you consider the fact that the minimum wage there is significantly higher than Singapore’s.

Actually, we don’t even have an official minimum wage. That sucks. 

While some netizens in the comments express shock, others reasoned about the pricing:

Image: Tiktok (@gilbertzhuo)
Image: Tiktok (@gilbertzhuo)

One insight worth noting is that since the concept of cai png isn’t a staple there, it’s no surprise that food places selling cai png will purposely mark up the price to generate more profit.

Aside from the discussion around the cai png’s price, others commented how jealous they are of his life, where he preferred to eat local cuisine over Australia’s. To that, OP simply replied:

Image: Tiktok (@gilbertzhuo)

True-blue Singaporean.

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In New York, Not Acceptable

Interestingly, this reaction drastically differs from a similar one that occurred last year.

Remember Urban Hawker? The first-ever Singapore-style hawker centre in New York opened by KF Seetoh and his partner received a lot of hate for its high-priced food.


New York and Australia are similar in that they both have a typically high price point for dining in and especially so in the area where Urban Hawker was located, near Times Square.

Yet, that doesn’t deter netizens from critiquing the food prices. For example, one of the vendors, Pranaholic Collections, sold their prawn noodles at US$18 (S$25). In Singapore, it would cost only around S$7.

The founder, Alan Chong, tried to justify the pricing by sharing that besides the kitchen assistants’ salary of US$5,000 (S$7,150) per month, rental costs, taxes, and housing in New York are higher.

Still, that didn’t completely curb the negative buzz surrounding the price point.

Besides all this commotion about local food being expensive overseas, I’m more concerned with the problem at hand: that cai png prices in my neighbourhood increasing.