The Singapore postal codes, a 6–digit string of numbers, is the backbone of efficient postal delivery in Singapore.
Most of us living in Singapore knows that our postal codes have 6 digits. However, property agents and many property advertisements will describe a certain property as being in District 9 or District 10.
Where did this district numbering come from?
Actually, they are postal codes…back in the olden days.
Evolution of the Singapore Postal Codes
Singapore postal codes were initially 2-digit codes denoting the 28 postal districts in the past. For example, the East coast area (that is, Katong, Marine Parade etc.) had a postal code of 15.
As the country grew and more buildings were added, the city was further divided into 81 postal sectors and hence, the 4-digit postal code was adopted in 1979. The postal code for the East coast area then became 1544 instead of 15.
The 4-digit postal code was formed by retaining the 2 digits of the postal districts and adding 2 digits for the new postal sectors. Under this system, many properties in Singapore continued to retain their original postal districts. Property agents still like to market and sell properties according to districts. For example, they will say a certain property is in District 9 or District 10.
The original purpose of the postal code system is for fast sorting of mails, and prompt delivery. When the 4-digit postal codes became inefficient, a 6-digit system had to be introduced.
In 1995, the postal district was dropped while the postal sector remained. New digits were used to denote the types of housing. For example, a “0” was added to the postal sector for public housing and other numbers for commercial or industrial buildings.
For those of us living in public housing, the apartment block number automatically becomes the last 3 digits of the 6-digit code. For instance, the postal code of Block 123 in Marine Parade would be 440123.
This means every building and house in Singapore has its own unique postal code. This is so cool, but it also means people know exactly which block you are staying (not just the postman), which makes it so much easier for potential stalkers!
The 6-digit postal code definitely made mail processing a breeze and next day delivery a reality! On many levels, the efficient postal system is a reflection of Singapore’s reputation as a well-oiled and well-run country.
Trying to locate postal codes? Go to postal code finder: https://www.singpost.com/find-postal-code. Key in the block and street name, or building name and viola, the postal codes will appear.
So far the current 6-digit system seemed to be doing well. But who knows, it may not be long before we need to expand it to an 8-digit system. Now, that will be even more difficult to remember!
Maybe Singapore can consider adopting what3words.
Some Interesting Facts About Singapore Postal Codes
Singapore is a bit unusual in that it is a city that is also a country, just like the Vatican City.
To comply with USPS format, instead of writing the Singapore postal codes on the country line (ie Singapore XXXXXX), we use Singapore as a city name as well as the country name:
Block 123, Marine Parade Road
SingPost has been named one of the most efficient postal operators in the world.
In May 2007, it made its mark in the international postal industry by winning the World Mail Awards for the Quality category. Another international accolade in our bag it seemed 🙂
In 2018, Singapore Post won the World Post and Parcel Award in the Technology category for its SmartPost and the Smart Post Office.
In the Technology Award judges were looking for technologies, whether hardware or software, that can generate measurable and meaningful change, whether in productivity, business processes, or business models… The winner was selected based on a vision that uses technology to link tighter operational management and better customer service.Judges’ Statement
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feature image credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sgp_2400_region_label_v01.png#filelinks
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