Giving Birth in Singapore or Australia?

Hi fellow Singaporean down under,
A follower of your blog, I'd like to get your view on in regards to your decision between having your child born in SG vs born in Perth - who will be granted a citizenship automatically.
I've just filed my application this morning and while my husband and I are planning to start a family, what's your view in regards to:-
- giving birth in AU so the child will be granted the citizenship automatically. This is definitely a plus point but we're also at risk given that a)we both are unsure how soon we can get a job and b) having to adapt too many new challenges at one time - coming to a foreign land, having an addition in the family
- giving birth in SG, make full use of the 4 months paid maternity
- apply for dependent pass for the child
I imagine it must be a stressful period when your child is born and barely a few months in Perth?
Happy to hear your thoughts.


Hi ST,

I gathered that you asked this because you read that I came over to Perth with my wife 5 months into her pregnancy. In case you wondered, we didn't plan for that. We didn't even plan for a child but we were blessed with a brilliant one. The experience of taking care of a pregnant wife in a new unfamiliar environment was indeed daunting. It kept me wide awake, slightly excited, slightly panic during my earlier days in Perth. If you guys are not pissed poor as we were, perhaps you wouldn't have to worry like I did. You will be nurturing your pregnancy holding hands with your husband in regular park strolls in the most serene environment you can ask for just like what we did, but without the nagging feeling of finding a job ASAP. I know you are after the technical points about this rather than these crap, but I thought you should be also consider the pregnancy life in both countries, not just the giving birth part. In this case, I give Perth the vote. Peaceful environment. Splendid air. Wide open space. I don't think I need to elaborate much about which environment is better for a woman during her pregnancy.

It's a personal thing - I hate applying for things. The thought of an additional application process for the baby sends shivers down my spine. The thought of applying for 4 months paid paternity leave doesn't excite me a bit, especially if I am planning to leave the company once I come back from leave. I had never left a company with the feeling that I owed them anything. That's just me, so don't let that affect you. Got money, feel free to grab.

We already planned to leave for Perth in Sept 2011. The air tickets were bought months ago. I learnt about our surprise pregnancy later and had to come to a decision. I could have chosen to stay and wait out my child's birth in Jan 2012. Then I would have to apply for whatever she needed to fly to Perth with us and would have to disrupt her earlier development by taking her to a brand new environment to get used to. If you are not a first time parent, you will understand it is easier to move around with a baby inside than outside the tummy. When I say move, I don't mean going to the shopping centre downstairs. In my opinion, it is double the stress to migrate with an infant in addition to the same things that any migrant goes through, no job, no friends, new environment. 

So you may end up threading carefully like most of the Singaporeans I knew here. The dad moves over first, suffers the heartbreak of being away from his infant or toddler, finds a job, a place to stay before bringing the rest of the village along. That may take a few months to even a few years depending on different circumstances. There is nothing wrong with such an arrangement at all but my wife and I chose to go through every chapter of our struggles together. It was just a personal choice.

If you are not a first time parent, you will also understand a baby does not come with a snap of the fingers. I mean, of course you know that but I wasn't referring that. I know enough couples personally who didn't want babies when they could and wanted babies when they couldn't. The point I am trying to put across is that sometimes babies cannot be timed as you like it. So it sounds kinda weird to me if anyone plan to adjust their migration according to their missed periods.

Some parents just want to register their children as Singaporeans. They cited reasons such as Baby Bonus and other what nots. Again, that's a personal choice. That will depend on what the Singaporea Citzenship means to you. I have gone there before [link] and won't elaborate more. Personally, I will not involve money on the citizenship weighing scale. If I have to talk money, I'll still pick Perth because I rather have a peace of mind having no hospital bills to pay over a lucrative baby bonus. Same logic as one will rather have no GST to pay at all than to pay GST and receive GST rebates from time to time. You decide which is better.

The birth of my daughter, Albany, was a special moment. It marked the first time I shed tears of happiness in my life. The midwife got me to put on a diaper on my 10- minute old baby and wheeled her myself to the ward. On my way down, every hospital staff gave me a wide smile. As I sat by the window bench of the empty ward watching the sunset, holding my baby gingerly in my arms, flashbacks of our early sweet and bitter Perth moments tore through my mind. In the far future, I may even look back and pick this as one of key defining events of my life. I will never take anything in return for that moment. Never.


  1. " I will never take anything in return for that moment. Never."

    Not even for the chance to say goodbye to your dog?


    1. Given the ordeals I had with KK hospital, I may well be saying goodbye to my dead child should I choose to deliver her in Singapore.

  2. Hi there,
    I dont think your child will receive citizenship automatically. I think one of its parents have to either be a PR or a citizen before they will consider the child.


    they can only acquire citizenship automatically on their 10th birthday, if they have lived here for majority of the time. Hope this helps.

  4. Thanks mate. You've surely englightened me!