Visiting Singapore requires thorough preparation. Problems, that in all possibility did not even cross your mind when you decided to look for work in Singapore, will confront you. So, be prepared to take Singapore as it is with all of its difficulties, contradictions and challenges.
Do not take too lightly the influence the Singapore visa can have on the outcome of your adventure! Think, for example, you will experience the unfamiliar immigration rules and practices, strange job application procedures, bizarre job selection trends and weird management culture.
The Singaporean government welcomes ex-pats who can bring skills with them. Singapore has several categories of visas for foreigners wishing to study, work or visit. For foreign students and visitors, the process is easy to follow.
Foreign nationals seeking jobs in Singapore will find the process more complex as they MUST apply for employment passes/work permits before arrival in Singapore.
Most visits to Singapore are trouble-free but you should be aware of the risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against Western interests and civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners like restaurants, hotels, clubs and shopping areas. In recent years the Singaporean authorities have carried out a number of investigations and operations against terrorist networks.
You should exercise a high level of security awareness and monitor local news broadcasts and consular messages. Ensure that your travel documents and visas are current, valid and secured in a safe place. Carry a photocopy of your travel documents in lieu of the originals. Maintain a low profile, vary times and routes of travel, and exercise caution while driving. Making local contacts quickly and seeking support from other expatriates will greatly increase your comfort and safety.
Passport and Singapore Visa
All foreign nationals need to fulfil the following requirements to enter Singapore:
- A passport with at least 6 months of validity remaining and two blank pages
- Enough money to last the intended duration of stay
- Confirmed onward/return ticket
- Completed the disembarkation/embarkation card
- A Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate, depending on which country you are coming from
- A valid Singapore visa
Many neighbouring areas require that your passport is valid for at least six months before they will allow you to enter, so if you plan on regional travel beyond Singapore, make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months beyond the date you plan to enter such areas.
Authorities in Singapore may impose caning for immigration violations. Singaporean authorities do impose these sentences on foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens. Males over the age of 50 and women are not subject to caning
Travellers from the USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa and most European countries automatically receive a 30-day tourist visa on entry if arriving by air, or a 14-day visa if arriving by land or sea.
Citizens of some countries need to obtain a Singapore Visa before entering. You can found a list of these countries here. A processing fee is SGD30 per visa application at the time of submission.
Note: Possession of a visa alone does not guarantee a foreigner entry into Singapore. The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers at the point of entry at Singapore checkpoints determine the grant of an immigration pass to a foreign visitor and each case is considered on its own merits.
Once the short-term visa is approved at the point of entry at Singapore checkpoints, it will contain an approved duration of stay. It is important that the duration of stay does not exceed the approved time period, as it is a punishable offence in Singapore to do this.
A foreign national MUST have a work permit/pass before visiting Singapore for the purpose of study, taking up employment, training, investment or residence. Check for details on the Singapore Work Permit page.
For further information about the Singapore work pass/visa/permit, contact the Singaporean embassy, consulate or representation in your home country
Even if you have a visa to Singapore, the airline might refuse to allow you to board. This is because airlines face penalties from governments if passengers are not eligible for entry to a country and they are responsible for carrying them out again. Generally, there is no problem if you have onward (or return) tickets. If you do not have one of these, you might run into difficulties. If you are planning to work or study for a year you might not want to buy a return ticket, so this can be a problem. Sometimes you can overcome the problem by buying a refundable or partially refundable ticket in advance, or booking hotels in the next destination and forfeiting the deposit.
It is quite easy to get an extension. You must apply for it before your approved time period is over.
Vaccination certificates are not required. Except, when you are coming from a country where yellow fever occurs the proof of yellow fever vaccination is necessary.
Other Singapore Visa Info
To be successful in your Singapore job search and getting the job you want, you need to prepare a Singapore cover letter and Singapore CV which you must email instantly to the prospective employers selected during a job search in Singapore.
When you receive an invitation to the Singapore job interview, you may apply for a Singapore visa and Singapore work permit/pass. Then prepare yourself for a job interview and take a look at the Singapore dress code because how you dress is one of the most important attributes in not hired for available jobs.
Good luck with your Singapore visa.