BA (Hons) Business and Management student, Mathew Lwee, tells us how he celebrates Christmas in his home country of Singapore.

I celebrated my first Christmas in England last year and I absolutely loved it! It was a joyous occasion where you can smell the festive spirit in the air wherever you go. Christmas Markets are set up around the city which offer warm drinks and Christmas delights – attracting people to step out into the cold and visit in their snuggly coats.

In Singapore, where I come from, we do celebrate Christmas and have similar traditions. Here, I will be comparing the differences of celebrating Christmas in the UK and back home!

Weather – Singapore is located in Southeast Asia, and with a bearing of just one degree north of the equator as you can imagine, it is a warm tropical country. Christmas? We do it in flip-flops and T-Shirts!

Christmas Shopping – As the Christmas season approaches, it is also when we start to go on shopping sprees whilst brainstorming about the gifts we have to get to be prepared for the ever-so-exciting Christmas gift exchange. Most shops in shopping malls will also be offering huge discounts. Shopping must be a global language everybody knows!

Festive Lights – In Singapore, it is also the season to enjoy the Christmas lights and decorations! Large Christmas trees would be erected and the town would be transformed into a magical land of festive cheer. Photo taking is aplenty and almost mandatory, plus Christmas songs can be heard from every corner of the streets. However, we often tie the word Christmas with snow. Artificial snow machines are placed in various locations where you can swing your shopping bags around in your flip flops and T-shirts, allowing the snow to surround you and hope for a great snap to post on social media!

Festive Feasting – Singaporeans are known for their love of food, and Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a sumptuous feast of turkey, honey baked Ham, roast beef and the delightful array of desserts.

Celebrating Overseas – With the Christmas season happening during the school holidays in Singapore, families often travel to colder countries, especially within Europe, to soak up all the wondrous festive spirits with the hope of catching a White Christmas. Talk about family goals!

In essence, we don’t actually celebrate Christmas much differently from people in the UK! However, it always feels good to have a mug of warm mulled wine while snuggling with family and friends to make it a warm and cosy Christmas! One more point to note… we do also have the same Monday Blues after the festive weekend.

Happy Christmas!

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