Setting boundaries for backpackers

Mr Ngoh Shian Bang, who began hosting backpackers at his Tampines home in 2014, with letters and postcards from his guests.
Mr Ngoh Shian Bang, who began hosting backpackers at his Tampines home in 2014, with letters and postcards from his guests.ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG
Mr Ngoh Shian Bang (first row, left) with his guests from Finland and Argentina. He compiles a list of free and cheap recommendations for his guests, who are often travelling on a budget.
Mr Ngoh Shian Bang (first row, left) with his guests from Finland and Argentina. He compiles a list of free and cheap recommendations for his guests, who are often travelling on a budget. PHOTO: NGOH SHIAN BANG

SINGAPORE - When Mr Ngoh Shian Bang, 24, first asked his mother if he could host backpackers at their HDB flat in Tampines, she baulked.

"I was worried about safety and leaving them alone at home when we go out. I also felt that as guests, they should contribute to our utility bills, even if it is only $10 or $20," says Madam Hsieh Lin Jung, 63.

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