I had heard about KidZania from other bloggers and had been interested in visiting one with our kids. I liked the concept of giving kids a bit of an idea about roles that might interest them when they get older but in a way that seems fun and engaging. My detailed KidZania Singapore review should help you plan your next visit in KidZania Singapore.
I know KidZania has been popular overseas since its inception in Mexico, however we don’t have one in Australia as yet. When we were passing through Singapore, I took the opportunity to visit KidZania Singapore which opened in April 2016. KidZania Singapore is located on Sentosa Island and is accessible easily by train, road or cable car. Read below for my KidZania Singapore review.
KidZania is a theme park in its own right, although for the experiences the children are getting I think its really reasonably priced. It is however focussed for kids under 12 but kids up to 16 would enjoy it if they hadn’t been before. Its a great learning experience for like will be like in the ‘real’ world!
I recommend pre-booking tickets if you will be visiting during the peak which will be over weekend, public holidays and school holiday periods. If you are on a tight schedule and need a particular date, I also suggest you book in advance.
KidZania is an indoor interactive kids city combining inspiration, fun and learning through realistic role-playing for children aged 4 to 17. KidZania is complete with buildings, paved streets, vehicles and a functioning economy with recognisable brands that they know and love. Through realistic role play kids are able to contribute to the inner workings of a city while exploring career options and earning money.
The kids are fitted with security bracelets at the entry that electronically tags them to their accompanying adults. These serve two purposes, they ensure that the children do not exit KidZania without supervision and are scanned at each job to deposit earnings. This leaves the adults free to let the children wander freely.
Parents aren’t allowed into most work areas at KidZania, the focus is on giving the kids independence. It encourages the them to think and make decisions by themselves instead of looking to their parents for encouragement. I think this is a great strategy which encourages kids to be more independent. Some activities allow parents to be part of role play e.g. during the cabin crew role play Craig and I were passengers on the plane.
On arrival the kids go to the Maybank branch to set up their account and pin number and get issued with a debit card. This allows them to deposit their earnings and withdraw their cash from the ATMs located around the city.
KidZania has it’s own currency called KidZos. The debit card the kids receive on arrival contains 30 KidZos and they also get 20 KidZos in cash. The children earn KidZos for each role that they participate in to encourage children to work, learn, earn and play. Children are then able to withdraw their kidZos at the ATM or ikiosk to purchase things such as goods at the department store and services. They even have to pay to participate in the jobs that produce a product such as the Ice Cream Factory where the kids ended up with a Paddle Pop.
KidZania is spread over 2 floors with more than 60 role play opportunities for your kids to experience. Each role play is designed as 15-20 minute learning adventures which are fun and educational at the same time. At each establishment there is a Census Board, this tells you activity duration, capacity, suggested age and amount of KidZos to be earned or some will require you to pay! Following are the ones my kids experienced and some of the most popular.
KidZania Singapore partnered with Qatar Airways and installed the decommissioned body of a B737, with the wings and engines intact and the cockpit sticking out of the facade of the building. This gives the children a genuine opportunity to experience being a pilot in front of a simulator or to try their hand at cabin crew. Our children opted for the cabin crew. The pilot experience is very popular so you will need to get there early or be prepared to queue for a bit.
Hospital, Accident & Emergency Theatre, Nursery & CT Scan Room
The kids experienced being surgeons and performed a kidney transplant! What child hasn’t wanted to be a doctor or a nurse at some stage! Parents are encouraged to be patients in accident & emergency or you can watch from the window while the children look after a nursery full of newborn babies. The kids have to attend to crying babies and feed, change and bath the babies while dressed in scrubs.
Experience training on what to do in case of a fire, get down low and go, go, go! These are all skills that children can take away and hopefully remember and put to go use if ever in that situation. At the end of the interactive presentation, the kids are called out to an abandoned building on fire where they put it out with hoses. Great way to learn effective life skills.
Ice Cream Factory
All the children love this experience with Paddle Pop, where they learn about nutrition and good food choices. They then learn about the ingredients used to create a Paddle Pop before creating one of their own. Best of all you get to take your own Paddle Pop home, an eat now treat that all the kids love. This is one of the most popular role plays so it is therefore limited to one role play per visit.
Other Role Plays
Some of the other experiences include: Coach Station, Driving School, Acting Academy, Imaging Academy, Insurance Office, KFC burger maker, Cash Vault operator, Dental Clinic, Film Studio, Radio Station, Convenience Store, Courier Service (very popular), Fashion Boutique, Optical Shop, CSI, Jail Warden, Police Officer, Pizza Shop, Health Institute, Milk Innovation Lab (Yakult), Science Laboratory, Water Quality Assurance Plant and Kindergarten. As you can see there are so many experiences to be had for every possible interest.
Brands that kids will recognise
Some to brands that have partnered with KidZania are: 7Eleven, Abbott, kiss92, Lim Chee Guan, Canon, Discovery Channel, Pizza Hut, Yakult, Singapore Police Force, Esso, Nickelodeon, Paddle Pop, Johnson’s, KFC, Toshiba, Qatar Airways and WTS Travel to name but only a few. These brands have come together to provide an authentic experience that add to the kids experience and fun.
Our kids loved KidZania, it was a highlight of our trip. Alannah is nearly 13 years old and I was a bit worried that it might have been a bit young for her but she really enjoyed it and said that it was good fun to experience some roles she might think about working towards now she is in high school. Keira and Caelan found it very interactive and liked role playing positions that required them to do things. Not only did they have to play the part but they also had to look the part, surgeon required green scrubs, ice cream factory required an apron and hair net and cabin crew required the actual Qatar Airways uniform of vest and hat and pilots were dressed in Captain’s jacket and hat.
There were a lot of staff around to assist the kids and make the experience fun while learning. Children are able to utilise queue cards to hold their place in the queue at the more popular role plays and go off and complete other roles while they are waiting. Queue Cards are limited and distributed at regular intervals on a first come first served basis.
We were really lucky when we were there, it was mid week in the afternoon, so it wasn’t overly busy and we were able to move around and experience everything the kids wanted to do. I was warned that KidZania can get very busy on weekends and school holidays where the most popular role plays can have a queue of 90 mins. Keep this in mind when planning which day you will visit.
If you are looking for other ideas for things to do with kids in Singapore, I have it all here for you, Universal Studios Singapore, Singapore Zoo, Gardens by the Bay, Singapore Zoo Night Safari and if you are happy to head just over the border in to Malaysia, Legoland Malaysia is also fantastic for kids. I have completed a great post on the best way to get to Legoland Malaysia from Singapore to help you get there.
While in Singapore we stayed at the Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore. I highly recommend the Shangri-La Hotel or the Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa located near KidZania on Sentosa Island.
Sal & Co.
Disclaimer: We had a mutually beneficial arrangement with KidZania Singapore but as always our opinion is our own.