How Much Cheaper Are CNY Goodies In Malaysia Compared To Singapore

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With people coming to visit, it’s a good time to stock up on Chinese New Year (CNY) goodies. Bak Kwa is a staple that surely must not be missed, alongside some soft drinks to wash it down. With the SGD holding at RM 3.5 at time of writing, we were curious to find out how much cheaper our favourite CNY goodies will cost in Malaysia as compared to Singapore.

Bee Cheng Hiang

Prime Bak Kwa SG: S$82.00; MY: RM190.80(S$54.05)

Pork Floss SG: S$74.00; MY: RM172.80(S$48.95)

Lup cheong SG: S$21.20; MY: RM50.40(S$14.28)

Whether you are visiting in Singapore or Malaysia, Bee Cheng Hiang Bak Kwa is a brand which you will not miss, and this is why it is the starting point for our price comparison. While Bee Cheng Hiang has many different products, we compared 3 main products that most people would likely purchase for CNY.

Source: Bee Cheng Hiang

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
BCH Prime Bak Kwa (1KG) S$82.00 RM190.80 (S$54.05) 34.08%
BCH Pork Floss (1KG) S$74.00 RM172.80 (S$48.95) 33.85%
Lup Cheong (Packet) S$21.20 RM50.40 (S$14.28) 32.65%

Comparing prices on the Bee Cheng Hiang websites for Singapore and Malaysia, we see that Bak Kwa is about 34% cheaper in Malaysia than in Singapore. Do note that Singapore does not allow for meat and meat products such as Bak Kwa and Pork floss purchased in Malaysia to be brought into the country.

Read Also: Why Bak Kwa Costs More During Chinese New Year

NewMoon Abalone SG – S$36.80; MY: RM118.00(S$33.43)

Aside from being a delicacy in Chinese cuisine, Abalone or “Bao Yu” in Chinese sounds like the word for “to have surplus”, and therefore it is believed that eating Abalone in the New Year will bring abundance of wealth for the rest of the year.

Abalone is a common part of Pen Cai, a dish commonly eaten during the Chinese New Year, and Abalone is also commonly a part of hampers given during Chinese New Year.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
New Moon Abalone S$36.80 RM118.00

According to our research, one of the cheapest places to get New Moon Abalone is from online shopping. Even though the Shopee prices for Abalone are slightly cheaper in Malaysia, you will not be able to get it shipped to you in Singapore.

Read Also: Bak Kwas, Abalones, and Durians: How Much Deals Can You Get From Group Buys On Seasonal Items

Ichiban Boshi Yusheng/Yee Sang/Lohei 

Auspicious SG: S$66.80; MY: RM198.00(S$56.09)

Bountiful SG: S$56.80; MY: RM168.00(S$47.59)

Source: Ichiban Boshi

In Singapore, this dish is typically referred to as ‘Yusheng’ or ‘Lohei’, while in Malaysia it is more commonly known as ‘Yee Sang’ (cantonese for Yusheng).

Whatever you call this dish, it is a must-have for gatherings during Chinese New Year. This dish comes with many ingredients, and shopping for the ingredients yourself can be troublesome especially if you need to procure it in the right quantities. Fortunately, brands like Ichiban Boshi has a packaged deal for this, which makes it convenient for people to have it ordered and delivered ahead of a mealtime gathering.

  Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Auspicious Yu Sheng (8-10 pax) S$66.80 RM198.00 (S$56.09) 16.03%
Bountiful Yu Sheng (4-6 pax) S$56.80 RM168.00 (S$47.59) 16.21%

The prices of both the Auspicious and Bountiful Yu Sheng packages work out to be about 16% cheaper in Malaysia.

Read Also: Salary Guide To How Much You Can Earn As A Chef

Love Letters – SG: S$7.30; MY: RM18.00 (S$5.10)

Egg Rolls or Kueh Kapit are more commonly known these days as Love Letters, since village girls would allegedly stuff a note into them and hand them to the boy they liked. While kids today will never experience this, they would still have fun by pretending that the Love Letters were cigars.

Love Letters are also sometimes found in a flat, folded form, sometimes even stuffed with Pork Floss or chocolate. For simplicity, we have compared just the plain, cigar version.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Love Letters (400g) S$7.30 RM18.00

Comparing the average prices of 400g bottles of plain Love Letters found in street markets or supermarkets, we find that Love Letters are roughly 30% cheaper in Malaysia.

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Pineapple Tarts – SG: S$7.60; MY: RM19 (S$5.38)

Pineapple tarts originated from Peranakan Cuisine and are eaten during Chinese New Year because Pineapples are called ‘Ong Lai’ in Hokkien, which sounds very similar to the words for ‘Fortune come’. These come in different shapes, with Pineapple Jam inside a balled-up cookie, or sitting atop a disc-shaped cookie.

Since Pineapple tarts are commonplace, we decided to compare the average price of 400g bottles we could find in supermarkets and street shops.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Pineapple Tarts S$7.60 RM19.00

Similar to Love Letters, Pineapple Tarts are also roughly 30% cheaper in Malaysia.

Tong Garden Assorted Nuts

Source: Tong Garden

‘Huasheng’, the word for ‘peanut’, can also mean ‘Flower of Life’, and it is believed that consuming nuts would give longevity. Whether or not nuts actually make you live longer, they are still a good snack for guests who just want to nibble on something.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Menglembu Groundnuts 110g X 3 $3.30 RM12.00
Shandong Groundnuts 110g X 3 $3.30 RM9.90
Salted Peanuts (365g) $3.35 RM9.88
White Sugared Peanuts (400g) $3.35 RM11.05
Peanut Cracker (365g) $3.35 RM9.88

As shown in the table, peanuts are between 6-16% cheaper in Malaysia. However, do note that some nuts like Menglembu Groundnuts were slightly more expensive than in Singapore.

Mandarin Oranges – SG: S$9.95; MY: RM32.00(S$9.07)

Mandarin Oranges, also known as ‘Kum’, are a symbol of good fortune and wealth, and must be presented in pairs when coming to ‘Bai Nian’ (or greet ‘Happy New Year’). While the oranges usually end up being circulated, turning up without any would be a cultural faux pas, so you need a starting stash if you are visiting.

There are many different pack sizes, some selling by the kilo and some selling in specific number, and different sized oranges. For simplicity, we chose to compare the L sized oranges and a pack of 20, and compared the average of prices that we could find.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Mandarin Oranges (L, 20 pcs) S$9.95 RM32.00

Overall, the Mandarin Oranges were roughly 9% cheaper in Malaysia.

Soft Drinks

Coke 24 X 320ml – SG: S$20.90; MY: RM42.00 (S$11.90)

Coke 1.5L – SG: S$2.80; MY: RM3.68 (S$1.04)

Fanta Orange 320ml – SG: S$1.20; MY: RM1.70 (S$0.48)

Coca-Cola and Fanta Orange probably two of the more commonly-seen drinks during Chinese New Year. Their cans also happen to be red and orange in colour, which are CNY-appropriate festive colours.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Coke (24 X 320ml) S$20.90 RM42.00
Coke 1.5L S$2.80 RM3.68
Fanta Orange 320ml can S$1.20 RM1.70

We compared drinks with equivalent quantities, and where there were more sellers, we took an average price. Drinks overall seem to be around 40-60% cheaper in Malaysia.

Read Also: Why Does Coca-Cola Light Cost More Than All The Other Coca-Cola Flavours?

Far East Flora CNY Plants

Citrus Lime Tree – SG: S$98.00; MY: RM358.00 (S$101.42)

Pussy Willow – SG: S$8.80; MY: RM44.90 (S$12.72)

Citrus Lime Trees, Pussy Willows and Lucky Bamboo (which interestingly, isn’t actually bamboo) are common Chinese New Year decorations, and they collectively represent the coming of wealth or are thought of to improve the fengshui in the house.

Singapore Malaysia Cheaper (%)
Citrus Lime Tree S$98.00 RM358.00
Pussy Willow (6ft, 10 stalks) S$8.80 RM44.90

Plants seem to be more expensive in Malaysia, and the Malaysian website for Far East Flora has much fewer options in terms of colour, size, or choice of pot even for the same type of plant.

Read Also: When Is The Best Time (And Which Flower) To Buy For Valentine’s Day?

Not Always Practical To Get Goodies From Malaysia

Aside from plants, most CNY goodies are between 10-30% cheaper, and soft drinks are the cheapest, being between 40-60% cheaper. However, some food items cannot be brought into Singapore, and even if it is legal, it may not be practical to go to Malaysia to shop for Chinese New Year goodies.

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