«It’s a fine city», is often said about Singapore, referring to the fact that there are posters everywhere telling you how much you will be fined if you break certain rules. Two of the most famous rules are that it is illegal to spit on the street, and that it is illegal to import chewing gum (both could give fines of up to S$500, it is said – I haven’t seen the official numbers).
Singaporeans (and tourists) seem to follow the rules, and the effect of this is that Singapore is a very clean city. The streets are not sterile, of course, but compared to e.g. Oslo (where we lived before moving to Singapore), it is hardly any litter in the streets, or on the MRT (subway). It is, by the way, up to S$500 fine for eating or drinking on the MRT – even sweets or plain water (http://www.sgpolitics.net/?p=3437).
But one thing we have noticed here is how «everyone» wants to use lifts instead of escalators or stairs. Back in Oslo, I could hardly see anyone using the lifts at the subway other than people with baby strollers or wheel chairs (perhaps caused by the smell – in Singapore there is a fine of S$500 for urinating in a lift), and at the malls it is only people with baby strollers, people in wheel chairs, or people going to the gym on the 4th floor that think it is too cumbersome to use the escalator.
Today, we wanted to go one floor down to get to the MRT. As many places here, it was not allowed to take the baby stroller on the escalator, so we went for the lift. We got into the lift, and were followed by 3 girls wearing basketball outfits – so I guess they would have no problem using the escalator (it would actually have been a shorter distance for them to walk). As the door closed, we saw that another person with a baby stroller were left behind. The lifts are clearly marked with the wheel chair sign, and it should be common sense not to use them if you could just as well use an alternative.
That said, Singapore is a fine city to live in, and visit. But it could perhaps be even finer for wheel chair users, elderly, and families with children in baby strollers if there were some posters announcing fines for using the lift if you just as well could have used the stairs or escalators.