Tuesday, April 12, 2016

KidZania Singapore Finally Opens!

We've been waiting for the opening of KidZania Singapore for a really long time for now, ever since we paid the one in Bangkok a visit last year! You can read about our very exciting visit then, over at our earlier blog post here. We caught news of a preview of the place (more of a trial run) and managed to get our hands on some passes for the kiddos. But on condition that NO photos get leaked out before the official opening, hence our post only now.

In case this is the first time you are visiting KidZania for the very first time, let me just break it down for you on what to expect for your visit, as well as share some of my personal tips. 
  1. If you are taking taxi into Sentosa, I would suggest dropping off at RWS and then for you to take the free monorail to Beach Station so as to save on the Sentosa admission fees. Just walk pass the bus terminals after alighting at Beach Station, and you will be able to reach KidZania by following the directional signages.
  2. Get your tickets / passes from the ticketing counters fashioned after the real Qatar check-in counters at the airports, complete with flight attendants. Passports are not required, only money.
  3. Upon successful check-in, the kiddos will be issued 20 physical Kidzos (the official currency for KidZania) as well as a Maybank debit card each.
  4. First thing to do, is to ensure you get yourself a brochure to plan your route. You only have between 7-10 hours for the visit you know and our experience tells us that this is still not enough.
  5. Run to Maybank for your kiddo to open an account (on his/her own) and get a top-up of 30 Kidzos into the debit card. As such, you get a total of 50 Kidzos for the visit. The job at the bank pays well.  
  6. Education is important. Give your kiddo a quick one over at The Learning Lab and they will be able to earn more Kidzos at work later, or even pay less at the other establishments. 
  7. Now, you can either earn Kidzos by doing jobs, or spend the Kidzos by taking part in the various fun activities available.
  8. The typical activity takes around 20mins, so the typical "kiasu" parent will be able to squeeze two jobs per hour for their kiddos with careful planning. Take note that some jobs may take up more time though and good luck to you if you have multiple kiddos wanting different jobs!
  9. Both payment and salary can be via the Debit Card or by using Kidzos. So it would be good for kiddos to have a pouch to keep everything.
  10. For parents who have older kiddos, and have no problems leaving them to their own devices, you can buy some food / snacks from Pizza Hut, KFC or even our Killiney Kopitiam with real cash, and head over to the Parent's Lounge on the mezzanine floor for a well-deserved rest while the kiddos explore the city on their own. 
  11. It is safe. The kiddos will not be allowed to leave the place unless accompanied by the guardian as both will be tagged with a wristband.
  12. Your kiddos' meals can be taken care of by them taking part in their own pizza-making (need to pay Kidzos at Pizza Hut), followed by grabbing a free Yakult drink by working at the Yakult Science Laboratory, which will earn them Kidzos at the same time. This is the best deal in town, don't say I never share! 
  13. Everyone is tagged, including parents and the kiddos' tags are matched with the parent / guardian's tag. So it is really safe for the kiddos to roam on their own as they will not be allowed to leave with anyone else. The tags cannot be tampered with.
The kiddos will receive their 20 Kidzos, as well as a debit card at the counters.
Once you are ready, you can check into the city! The kiddos can't wait!
The first stop you need to visit, would have to be the bank. In this case, Maybank. Parents are not allowed in and they will have to be independant from now on. *sob sob*
Steffi was shown how to use the kiosk.
And this is how it looks like! You can even check the balance after the trip, by going online at www.kidzania.com.sg/maybank
Perhaps like in real life, the bank offers the best pay in the whole city. Be sure to check it out too!
The bank is the safest in the world, with the police station just beside it. Leroy couldn't help but take a photo in the lockup cell.

Remember to get an education at The Learning Lab soonest possible as it will save the kiddos lots of KidZos at many of the establishment.
Felt like a very nice place to get an education for sure!
Leroy hard at work, earning his Biochemical Engineering degree in 20mins flat. Steady lah!
Being a fireman, is easily the most popular job in the entire city and the kiddos made a beeline to it.
Learning more about firefighting from the experts.
Learning the different drills from the man.
And they had to put their skills to the test by putting out the first a few streets away!
Leroy loves playing with water for sure! Legitimate water play this time!
To learn how to design and make candies, one would need to pay 10 KidZos.
Lots of beautiful candies on display!
And these are only for display, not for show.
And the trainer is showing the kiddos how to "cut" the candies into smaller pieces.
And Stacci is happiest with her bag of candies after the class.

The Yakult lab is the best value job in the whole city, simply because you get 8 KidZos and a free bottle of Yakult after completion! Shiok right?
The kiddos can learn more about probiotics and bacteria in general.
The kiddo learnt pizza making too but it cost them 10 KidZos each.
Here's Steffi with her heart-shaped pizza and lunch is served! 
Here, the kiddos learnt what I did last time as well! Making BBQ meat and they get paid 8 KidZos too!
The kiddos in their production line, each with their own task.
The kiddos got to smell the different spices used.
They also visited Paddle Pop Ice Cream Factory and it cost each of them 8 KidZos if I recalled correctly. Look at Leroy's face again!
Ensuring that proper hygiene is followed before starting work.
And they are so captivated by the ice-cream machine. 
Tada! The kiddos and their work of labor!
Window washing is definitely an option. Not highly paid, only 6 KidZos but Stacci loved to clean things up.and it is a job nevertheless!
Stacci was being guided along patiently.
And how happy the two of them looked from afar!
Stacci loving her job and her pretty superior!
And of course the kiddos needed to be pilots and air-stewardesses too!
The girls had a very thorough briefing by the trainer in the replica of the plane.
And look how focused the girls were!
And here they are learning the finer aspects of service in the air.
Leroy going through some instructions of sorts prior to taking off.
And look how cool the kiddos looked in the cockpit!
Donning their lab coat as they learn more about soap in the Lifebuoy Health Institute. Stacci looked really kawaii doesn't she?
And so, they went about with their experiments.
Stacci tried to be a postwoman but turned out she didn't really like the uniform!
Thus she went on to be a Peranakan lady instead, at the Peranakan Museum. 
Kidzania Singapore feels like replica of KidZania Bangkok, except that it had our local companies / brands such as Lim Chee Guan, The Soup Spoon, WTS Travel, Singapore Police Force and SCDF just to name a few! The kiddos truly loved the place and wouldn't want to leave if not for the closure of all the shops at the end of the our short 5hr preview visit. I am also not going bluff anyone, a family visit is not exactly cheap, especially for big families like mine. The cost breakdown for my family of six (excluding the cost of island admissions) would be a whopping -

1 x Toddler ($25) = $25
3 x Kids ($58)  = $174
2 x Adults ($35) = $70
Total = $269

It would really be great if they can consider having a family bundle package for those with many kids. *wink* I would NOT hesitate for even a second to tell you that it is totally worth a visit for your kiddos IF cost is not an issue. KidZania had far exceeded what its nearest competitor could offer in terms of the realism and the interactivity level for the kids. They have a working banking system, complete with self-service terminals, seamless POS systems at the outlets, and you can even check the balance online back at home! And it is amazing how all the staff at KidZania Singapore are so jovial, so cheerful and so ever ready to help! Well-done, now I need to work doubly hard for our next visit! Meanwhile, my tip to you would be - Online purchase of tickets is cheaper than buying at the counters. Check it out here.

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