Discounts on food and snacks during Chinese New Year are already rather good in Singapore (especially if you buy them online), but everyone knows that prices in Malaysia are even lower.
Before you run across the causeway immediately (or most probably drive) for the sick deals, did you know that not everything can be brought over from our neighbour?
And I’m not referring to chewing gum, which can actually be bought from Malaysia. This video will explain everything:
Here’s a list of CNY must-eats you can (and cannot) bring into Singapore.
Things You Can Bring
You are allowed to bring most snacks (read on to understand why it’s most and not all) in from Malaysia (phew), since snacks are considered processed food, and you are allowed to bring in a maximum of 5 kg or 5 litres of processed food, with a total value not exceeding $100 per person.
Processed food here includes snacks like pineapple tarts, nian gao, love letters, and basically every kind of traditional CNY biscuits like peanut cookies and kueh bangkit that the Health Promotion Board would disapprove of.
Just take note of the weight limit, and try not to look like you’re trying to illegally import goods. Also take note of your weight after you’re consumed them.
Did you know you can totally bring in Yu Sheng from Malaysia, even though it looks like it’s illegal? Yu Sheng is basically a salad with raw fish, and all of them are allowed. However, there is also a weight limit here, for vegetables and seafood.
You are only allowed to bring in a small amount of vegetables, so you can’t bring in a lot of plates. Actually, you probably don’t need a lot of plates to begin with, so this should not be a problem.
Nevertheless, there’s a CNY seafood warehouse sale ongoing, so instead of heading to JB, you can head to Jurong instead.
Eh, wait, there’s no difference between JB and Jurong.
Oranges fall under fruits and vegetables, and you are only allowed to bring in a small amount for personal consumption, like Yu Sheng.
How small is small? According to SFA, it means “hand-carried size”.
And now, let’s move on to the bad news: What you cannot bring in.
Things You Cannot Bring
Unfortunately, the star of CNY celebrations everywhere, the ubiquitous bak kwa that you’ll always see on tables, is not allowed. Bak Kwa is made of pork, and pork-related products are not allowed to enter Singapore from Malaysia.
This, however, is not a good excuse to eat the 5kg pack you just bought in Malaysia in one shot before you drive back.
As for unique bak kwa like vegetarian bak kwa or whatnot, those are considered processed food, so technically, they’re allowed.
Also, check out this article on the unique bak kwa flavours you can buy in Singapore.
Meat-Related Products (Other Than Seafood)
Simply put, if your items contain meat other than seafood, they’re not allowed.
So should there be any creative CNY goodies that contain meat (a good example would be bak kwa…made with, erm, mutton?), indulge in them in Malaysia instead.
More details can also be found in SFA’s website here.
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