It’s no surprise that one of Singapore’s national sports is queueing. We queue for everything from freebies and food (like sponge cakes, lobster nasi lemak, ten don, etc), to things that cost over $1,000. This year, it seems we love queueing just so we can throw money at retailers – and here are some of the most talked-about queues over the course of 2017:
Gong Cha (December)
This comes as a shock, considering it’s an opening of a store that’s been here before. It’s not like it’s a limited-edition bubble tea, or something you can’t get elsewhere, right? People literally queued at the new Paya Lebar outlet simply because there were 99 free cups given away – at a store where you can buy tea from $2.20.
iPhone X (November)
OK it’s no surprise that everyone queues for new iPhones around the world, so it’s no different in Singapore. What most of us don’t get is… why queue for something you can get online and have it delivered to your doorstep? For some of these fanatics, queueing started the night before the launch! Obviously Apple folks didn’t anticipate this madness, hence crazy queues were formed at their flagship store:
Black Friday (November)
Even though Black Friday is an American tradition, Singaporeans also celebrate this shopping spirit. If it’s one thing that can get people riled up, it’s the slashing retail prices – and retailer Robinson’s managed to gather a huge crowd just before its opening. OK granted, there were no stampedes in sight (Singaporeans are courteous like that) but crowds were seen running wildly in the store.
Yeezy Boost 350 by adidas (November)
The extremely limited edition Yeezy Boost 350 by adidas was a huge queue magnet for sneakerheads – the shoes were so sought-after that you had to go down in person to the Pacific Plaza store to ballot for a pair! With only one valid ID per ballot and 500 tags on a first-come-first-serve basis, it’s no wonder the queue was crazy – for a pair of kicks that cost a cool $349.
Louis Vuitton x Supreme Collection (July)
The Supreme x Louis Vuitton collection was probably the most significant collab in streetwear history, and it garnered so much buzz that buyers needed to ballot for a spot to enter the store! Only 350 lucky people managed to score an entry – from a crowd of 7,500 – and got the chance to snag items that cost at least $1,000 apiece. Of course, the resale value of these can skyrocket to 200% of their original price.
It’s not abnormal to encounter queues in Singapore on a regular basis – this queue culture has bred professional queue takers (who are often spotted with tiny stools, laptops, mobile phone, homework, etc) as well as queue entrepreneurs (those people who sell their time to you on apps like Carousell and iQueue). It’s good to know that even if we don’t have that much free time to whittle away on queues, there’s someone out there who can take our slot for us. Majulah.