Signed, Sealed, Delivered: A Look into Singapore’s Food Delivery Fare

Person ordering food using cellphoneSingapore is well-known around the world as a melting pot of Chinese, Malaysian, Indonesian, Indian and traditional Singaporean cuisines.

The country’s fast-paced and busy lifestyle, however, has made it more challenging for locals to enjoy a home-cooked meal. In fact, the local’s lifestyle has given birth to new eating habits and given rise to the country’s food delivery culture.

Tingkat Delivery Service

The locals’ appreciation for food deliveries may have started in the 1950s when caterers began offering tingkat delivery services, which remain popular until today. Kim Paradise, one of Singapore’s many tingkat meal providers, notes that tingkat lunch and dinner deliveries remain popular among busy families looking for a home-cooked meal.

Tingkat, which earned its name from the traditional metal or ceramic containers it comes in, offers healthy and filling meals on a plan basis, ranging from several days up to at least a month. The meal plan package makes it ideal for families with kids and busy, older workers who live alone.

Fast-food Delivery

The fast-food delivery is as ubiquitous in Singapore as it is anywhere else in the world. Fast-food fare has evolved to reflect the mix of cultures in Singapore. Popular Western fast-food chains have incorporated Asian flavors like curry and taro into their menus and embraced seasonal offerings for Chinese New Year and other holidays.

Millennials are more likely to spend on fast-food restaurants at least once a week. Despite this, more locals are starting to switch to healthier food delivery options, such as Halal dishes and Korean food.

App-based Food Delivery Service

The emergence of third-party online- and app-based food delivery services is one of the factors that helped drive down the popularity of fast-food delivery. Food delivery apps offer more convenience and a wider range of cuisines to choose from, giving locals access to restaurants and cafes that serve traditional meals or cater to clients with special dietary requirements. It also allows smaller food businesses, including favorite hawker stalls, to offer deliveries without paying any commission.

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Food delivery services have made their mark in Singaporean culture. It’s traditional tingkat meals, abundant fast-food choices and convenient third-party delivery apps have many locals embracing this trend as part of their everyday lives.