You read that right. Citizenship in a certain Caribbean nation costs about as much as a new car in Singapore. Hell, you might even have $20,000-$180,000+ left over, depending on whether you buy a practical Mazda 6, or a fancy BMW 5-Series. But citizenship isn’t the only thing you can “drive off” with for the price of a car in Singapore.
I can think of a couple other choices that’ll have you questioning why the hell you’re paying up to $300,000 for something that decreases 10% in value every year and costs several thousand dollars to operate annually (fuel, insurance, parking, taxes, etc.).
Here a few purchasing alternatives you that’ll have you laughing, crying, or both:
1. A New Passport: The Commonwealth of Dominica
You can buy “economic citizenship” in The Commonwealth of Dominica with a one-time “donation” of $130,000. I know, some of you are thinking “we can’t have dual citizenship!” Relax! I’m not proposing that you jump off Sampan 2.0 to move to a Caribbean island that’s about the same size as Singapore, but with 98.5% less people (pop. 71.6K) and numerous economic benefits.
I’m just trying to point out that buying Dominica citizenship is an outrageous purchase, especially when you consider that citizens get these benefits:
- Tax Haven Status: You don’t need to pay wealth taxes (capital gains, inheritance tax, etc.) or taxes on foreign income.
- Complete Discretion: Your banking and financial asset details won’t be reported to your home country. In fact, Dominica won’t even inform your home country that you’re a citizen!
- No National Service: You’re not required to serve in the military… unless you really want to sign up.
- Very Business Friendly: Your international business ventures, especially with the U.S., won’t be hindered by restrictive economic policies.
- Visa-Free Travel: You can travel to more than 90 nations around the world including the U.K., Hong Kong, South Korea, and Turkey.
- You Can Reside In Your Home Country: You remain a citizen even if you’re not living in Dominica.
- English is the National Language: You won’t have to worry about learning Spanish or French (thankfully).
If you’re curious about the application process, you can check out Dominica’s citizenship application page here.
*Bonus: Can I have a house with that? – Did I mention that property in Dominica is ridiculously cheap too? You can buy a decent 3-Room home by the ocean for about $120,000 SGD+ plus taxes, duties, and fees. As a citizen, you’ll also be exempt from paying the 10% Alien Landholding License on property.
2. A Golf Trip: 44-day golfing tour across 15 destinations with the chance to WIN a car
Ah, golfing! The sport of kings… or is that horse racing? Anyway, I bet the cost of this little “trip” is already sending you into cardiac arrest if you’ve got a weak heart. But before you shuffle off this mortal coil, stay with me for a minute – because this isn’t just any golfing trip.
It’s a once in a lifetime experience that’s part luxurious round the world (RTW) holiday, and part PGA tour-style competition against other golfers to win guess what? A BMW Z4!
Here’s what the $220,000+ “dream” golf trip gets you:
- First-Class Travel & Accomodation: You’ll be travelling, lodging, and dining in “First Class” throughout the entirety of your golf trip. Not only that, you’ll be taken on excursions at each destination to see the sights such at each location (ex. Taj Mahal in India) or participate in activities such as wine tasting or humanitarian work.
- Golfing Round the World: You’ll be golfing in 15 exotic destinations across the globe including Las Vegas, Peru, Easter Island, Tahiti, Samoa, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Angkor Wat, India, Dubai, Zambia, South Africa, Buenos Aires, and St Maarten.
- The PGA Experience: If you spend more time on the “green” than you do in the office, this holiday is perfect for you. You’ll feel like you’re a PGA pro going up against 59 other participants from around the world. Not only that, the tournament will be hosted by PGA champion Keith Clearwater, who’ll be there to give golfing tips to everyone.
- You Can Win a Car: If you’re a golfer with a handicap that’s good enough to win the car, you’ll basically get the holiday “free of charge” since the BMW Z4 costs about $220,000 anyway.
Of course, if you can’t distinguish a golf club from a back scratcher, it’s probably wiser to just buy the car if that’s what you really want. But if your golfing skills are, to quote my colleagues, “power,” it might be worth joining.
3. A New Oceanfront Condo: 3-Room/3.5-Bathrooms Penthouse in Ecuador
Every property investor in the world knows that the housing market in Singapore is as good as gold, especially if you’re buying a condo or landed property. But after prices grew as monstrously as kaiju from Pacific Rim, the government brought prices down with a series of cooling measures.
But lower property prices are good right?
For sellers and developers… no. But for people looking to buy a home, it’s definitely a buyer’s market. In fact, you can even buy a new 3-Room condo for around $1,200 per square foot (psf)!
A couple of years ago, such as price would’ve been unheard of – but as good as this is, the cost of a car might barely be able to cover the down payment.
But for the price of a new BMW 5-Series, you can buy a new 3-Room oceanfront condo in Ecuador. To put this ridiculously cheap purchase in perspective, let’s compare this oceanfront condo in Ecuador against an oceanfront condo in Changi Village:
|Plaza Del Sol– Manta, Ecuador||Ocean Front Suites– Changi Village|
|Rooms/Bathrooms||3-Rooms/3.5 Bathrooms||3-Rooms/2 Bathrooms|
|Living Space||807 sqft||1,099 sqft|
|View||View of the ocean with beach access (minus cargo ships ruining the view)||View of the ocean but with the added bonus of seeing cargo ships on the horizon|
|Price PSF||$346.96 psf||$1,510.38 psf|
I don’t know about you, but if I had a choice between buying a car and a condo by the ocean… well, the answer’s simple for three reasons: 1) its an oceanfront property 2) you can make rental income from it and 3) unlike cars, a property investment won’t drop 10% in value every year!
Final Note: You still want to buy a car? Well, I certainly won’t stop you. But I can definitely offer you some advice on how to save money on buying a car, car insurance, and petrol costs. Speaking of car insurance, make sure to check out MoneySmart to find the right policy for your budget.
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