Tourist Spots: Give Priority to Singaporeans please!

Today was a madhouse at the zoo yet again. I do not know what is the occasion but there seems to be a surge in the number of tourists.

Please refer to a photo of the rainforest show at the zoo. You be the judge who are the predominant park goers.

Rainforest show

Flooded with tourists

It is a shame that weekends at the zoo are so crowded with tourists. For local parents who are both obliged to work to make ends meet, going to local attractions such as the zoo during weekends is the only way. Even if parents can take leave during weekdays, children are pressurized not to skip school.

So weekends and public holidays really are the only opportunity for local families to have family bonding through trips to local places of interest.

But local hangouts are not so local anymore. So often we have to compete with a large number of tourists. Some come from countries where jostling and pushing is in their blood. It makes the whole experience a painful one for both parents and young children.

Preferential access for locals

Since GE2011, the Government had loudly proclaim that priority will be given to Singaporeans, Singaporean first, so to speak.

Apart from giving priority to Singaporeans on housing, healthcare and education, can the government not consider ways to allow local parents better access to the zoo, Universal Studios, etc?

For example, during weekends, a surcharge can be applied to tourists visiting these places. The operators can determine what amount of surcharge is reasonable and workable, but there must be a distinction in the rates paid by locals and tourists.

The additional revenue from a weekend surcharge imposed on tourists can be passed on to the locals. The operators can issue cheaper annual passes, or cheaper weekday passes for those who chose to avoid the crowds.

Currently there are park hopper discount packages but where is the preferential treatment for locals?

After all, these tourism infrastructure are built on Singapore land, and partially funded by public funds.

The government has the responsibility to tilt the playing field toward the locals so that these tourism assets exist not just to serve the tourists.

Kampong Boy

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