School’s almost done! So on an ‘admin day’ (read: random weekday school holiday), we headed down to Kidzania, hoping to avoid the crazy crowds that are de rigour during weekends, public holidays and school holidays (what does that leave us with, seriously?). What was the crowd situation like? Read on for more details and ‘analysis’ throughout the post. My take from this visit is that a bit of strategising goes a long way.
Thankful for our win of 1 Adult and 1 Kid ticket from Life’s Tiny Miracles’ awesome blog giveaway, we purchased another 1 Adult (cos Daddy wanted to go, though he didn’t need to since one of our kids are above 8) and 1 Kid ticket with our Maybank credit card (15% off from Mon-Thurs at present). Heard that WTS Travel also sells tickets with a good discount, so perhaps we’ll try that next.
We arrived around 9:40am, since we heard that queues for way before the opening time of 10am.
And we were right! Even though this was as ‘non-peak’ as we could have strategised for, there was a queue of about 50 peeps by the time we joined it at 940am. If you have a Kidzania Pazzport, you get to join a special other queue that is significantly shorter. But the Pazzport doesn’t give you ‘fast pass’ access to any of the activities inside.
The thing about going on a weekday, is the chance of school groups! You can see one of the 3 kindy/childcare school groups in the photo below (the throngs of them!) and the entire P5 level of a primary school was also there, that day, seriously clogging up the queues. Oh well. I suppose the $58 per child ticket cost was somehow not much of a barrier to entry (were they allowed to use CDA and Edusave or something?!).
They started processing entry tickets (even if you have purchased them online) around 9:45am (though they will only officially open the doors to Kidzania proper at 10am, no matter how early you clear ‘immigration’), and it was our turn by about 9:55am, and we were able to get inside just a couple of minutes after 10am. Yay.
The lady serving us at the ticket counter was extremely helpful. Since it was our first time to Kidzania Singapore (though we have visited Kidzania Bangkok twice), she told us that if the Maybank queue was long, we could (and should) head straight for popular activities like Aviation first. Just remember to activate our ATM cards before leaving.
The Maybank queue was indeed predictably long, so we headed for Aviation on the second floor.
Aviation (Cabin Crew)
Thankfully, not many people had cotton-ed on to heading there first, so we were able to get Cabin Crew passes for the very next session. We waited 20 mins before the kids were allowed to ‘board the plane’ for training. We chose Cabin Crew instead of Pilot, since parents were allowed up for the former, yay! That was not allowed at Bangkok.
However, unlike Bangkok, in Kidzania Singapore kids can only choose either Cabin Crew or Pilot per visit, and not both. I suppose this was to let everyone have a chance at an Aviation activity.
We and the girls had a swell time, so no complaints!
K demonstrated how to use the oxygen mask, both kids had a go at reading out the landing greeting, and serving us food and drinks (no real stuff, use your imagination, parents!).
And this is the simulator that the ‘pilots’ get to play at. Coolz.
Here are some of the other activities. K&B were not interested in Mt E or Firefighting (having done that a couple of times in Bangkok).
For brunch, we decided to try out Soup Spoon! That was really fun, and I was really impressed with the puff pastry that the kids made. We queued about 30 mins for this, having arrived just as one batch of kids started. So they were at the head of the queue.
I had my own lunch from Soup Spoon, since I found the prices very similar to those in their usual outlets. It’s also a healthy option as compared to KFC (which I found very pricey!).
After their Soup Spoon activity ended promptly at 12 noon, they had to run to the Sticky Candy Shop ticket disbursement queue. Only kids are allowed to queue, which makes it fair and square in some ways, i.e. there is no added advantage to having parents accompanying the kid (but then again each parent is charged a mean $35 for entry, and can’t even value-add per se).
Sticky Candy queue system
At noon, Sticky Candy was giving out 34 slots for classes from 1:40pm to 2:20pm and K&B barely made it in as the final few in the 2:20pm slot. The queue (at a lamppost opposite the Sticky Candy shop) started building up from 11:45am (with hordes of kindy kids shepherded there by their teachers).
But I must say this is a good system for the popular activities, since 34 folks need only queue once, and their activity slots are spread out over the next few hours. After getting our Sticky Candy queue tickets at 1210pm, we could do whatever activities we wanted till 2:10pm, instead of being stuck in line outside the candy shop for 90 minutes.
To save time, the kids ate their lunch as they queued for the next activity. As you can see below, some of the queues were pretty long, so sometimes one of us parents would go and ‘recce’ other queues, to see whether the kids could save time. It’s some strategy balanced with some art, since it also depends on what the kids were interested in. For instance, at one point the SCDF firefighting queue was very short (like 20-30mins) but they were just not interested. So we had to ask them what they were interested in, and then compare the queues for those activities.
At one point, the kids strolled about the second floor, and decided on the Lifebuoy activity, since Yakult only takes kids aged 6 and above (and K didn’t want to go for an activity without B). Lifebuoy turned out to be pretty engaging, as they learnt about how to make soap, and the kids were given body wash to bring home.
Around 1:03 pm (so says the clock), they went to Maybank and the queues were very manageable then. Zipped in and out to activate their cards and bank in our largesse (accumulated from the past 2 Bangkok trips – I love how the currency is fully valid 1-for-1, no matter which country you earned it in).
We considered paying $18 a pop for a Pazzport for each kid, but in the end we got too caught up with activities and figured we could buy one when KL or BKK starts the program (favourable exchange rates, yo). Lots of time till age 17, and no real hurry to earn more dough (a Pazzport privilege as described in the photo below) at this point.
Stay tuned for Part 2, our record of the rest of the activities (7 in total that day) that they managed to complete. Coming up soon!
Address: Palawan Kidz City, 31 Beach View, Singapore 098008.
Admission Prices: Infant – Free (below 2 years old) | Senior Citizen – SGD $25 (60 years old and above) | Toddler – SGD $25 (2 – 3 years old) | Adult SGD $35 (18 – 59 years old) | Kids – $58 (4 – 17 years old).