Singapore Work Visa


  • Singapore is one of the most expensive cities in the world, but the booming economy, vibrant city culture, and a wide range of people moving here for work opportunities never fail to attract people from around the globe. Whether you are planning to visit this South East Asian gem for pursuing higher studies, to find a job, or to start your own business, the nation holds great appeal. Many people see this city as an Asian base to draw knowledge and skills with a large number of global companies having their base in the city of Singapore. If you are planning to move to Singapore for work, then a Work Visa is the most appropriate Singapore Visa for you.
  • All foreigners who intend to work in Singapore must have a valid pass (commonly known as a work visa) before they start work. If you are engaging foreigners to work in Singapore, you must ensure that they hold a valid pass. Find out which pass is suitable, if they are eligible, and how to apply so that there will not be a problem in future.

How to get Work Visa in Singapore

  • Having international work experience is not only great for your portfolio, chances are it will open doors for you years down the road and for entrepass Singapore as well. Based on the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2019, Singapore comes in at number 1 worldwide for the ethical behavior of companies as well as hiring and firing practices.
  • In addition, Singapore Salary & Employment Insights Report by recruitment firm Hudson said that about 53% of the employers surveyed aim to peg salary increases at 3 – 5% for the coming year. If this sounds good to you, you would want to make your way to Singapore. However, to legally work here, you must have a valid work visa in Singapore.
  • Other than the Personalized Employment Pass (PEP), all work visas are tied to the employer. Hence, any change in your employment will require a change in your work visa. Your visa options depending on your profile and experience. In this article, we summarize the 3 most common ways for professionals to work in Singapore. Singapore work visa Options

Work Visa in Singapore for Professionals, Managers or Executives (PME)

  • Get employed first. Your Singapore employment pass visa application can only be made by your employer and on your behalf. Depending on your experience and qualifications, you may be granted the Employment Pass (EP) or S Pass. To qualify for the EP, you must earn at least a fixed monthly salary of $4,500 (from 1 September 2020) or $5,000 in the financial sector (from 1 December 2020) and have sound qualifications (good degree, specialist skills, or professional qualifications). 
  • If you’ve accumulated more experience, the authorities expect you to command a higher salary which reflects the quality and expertise you’re bringing to the firm. To qualify for the S Pass, you need to command a salary of at least $2,500 per month (from 1 October 2020) and demonstrate good educational qualifications

What is a Singapore work visa

A work visa, which is known as a work pass in Singapore, is a work permit in Singapore that enables the foreign national to work in Singapore for a particular period. All foreign nationals are required to have a work permit or a work pass to take up employment legally in Singapore. eligibility to be eligible for the Work Pass in Singapore, the candidate must fulfill the following criteria:

  • The applicant must have a valid passport.

  • He/she must be at least 18 years of age. For Malaysians, the age limit is a maximum of 58 years and Non-Malaysians is 50 years.

An applicant can work only with the scope of work mentioned in their respective work permits and is not allowed to exceed the mentioned time. Also, running your own business without having a valid work permit is illegal and can lead you to prison.

Types of Work Visa in Singapore. There are several types of work visas in Singapore for people looking for skilled jobs in Singapore. Depending on the type of work you can apply for the appropriate visa. Here are the most common and widely issued visa types:

  • Entre Pass: This work permit is issued to foreign entrepreneurs who wish to start their business venture in Singapore.

  • Employment Pass: This permit is for foreign professionals, managers, and executive-level people who would earn more than S$3,600 and hold the required qualifications.

  • Personalized Employment Pass: This work permit gives more flexibility of work than an Employment pass and is issued to those with a higher salary.

  • S pass: This pass is issued to the mid-level skilled workers. If you wish to apply for this pass, then you must be earning at least S$2,200 per month and must meet the assessment criteria.

  • Miscellaneous Pass: This visa type is issued to foreign nationals working in Singapore on a short-term basis.

Documents required for Singapore work visa

  • Valid passport

  • Duly filled application form

  • Copies of education certificates

  • Past employment testimonials

  • 2 recent color photographs

  • A detailed description of the type of work to be performed by the applicant in Singapore

  • Company’s appointment letter

Know more about Miscellaneous Work Pass Scheme

The Miscellaneous Work Pass is issued to foreigners working in Singapore on short-term assignments. More specifically, you will be issued a Miscellaneous Work Pass if you are: involved in activities directly related to the organization or conduct of any seminar, conference, workshop, gathering, or talk concerning any religion, race or community, or political end;

  • A foreign religious worker giving talks relating directly or indirectly to any religion; or

  • A foreign journalist, reporter, or an accompanying crew member not sponsored by any Singapore Government agency.

  • The other information about this scheme is as follows:

  • Validity: Short-term
  • Quota System: No. Each application is considered based on its merit.
  • Permanent Residence Eligibility: Miscellaneous Work Pass holders are not eligible to apply for PR.

What are the different types of work passes in Singapore

Before beginning work in Singapore, all foreigners must have a valid pass (also known as a work visa).

For professionals:

  • Employment Pass

  • EntrePass

  • Personalized Employment Pass

For skilled and semi-skilled workers:

  • S Pass

  • Work Permit for foreign worker

  • Work Permit for the foreign domestic worker (FDW)

  • Work Permit for confinement nanny

  • Work Permit for performing artiste

For trainees and students:

  • Training Employment Pass

  • Work Holiday Pass (under Work Holiday Programme)

  • Work Holiday Pass (under Work and Holiday Visa Programme)

  • Training Work Permit

For family members:

  • Dependant’s Pass

  • Long Term Visit Pass

  • Pre-approved Letter of Consent

  • Letter of Consent for ICA-issued LTVP/LTVP+ holders

  • Letter of Consent for Dependant’s Pass holders who are business owners

Exemptions and working while on a visit pass:

  • Miscellaneous Work Pass

  • Work Pass Exempt Activities

  • Work pass exemption for foreign students

  • Work passes for holders of Long Term Visit Passes issued by ICA


Singapore has become the ideal business and commercial hub in Southeast Asia, partly due to its creative immigration policies designed to attract seasoned entrepreneurs and working professionals from around the world.

Questions and Answers

How to follow the Application Process for a work visa in Singapore?

Follow the below-mentioned application process that is followed in Singapore:

  • The employer or the Visa agent needs to apply on behalf of the applicant. They need to get written consent from the employee to apply for the work permit.

  • Fill out the application form along with all the required documents.

  • Pay the online fee

  • Once the application process is done, you can check the status of the application after a week on the official website of the Singapore Work Permit.

  • Once the visa application is approved, a print of the in-principle approval letter (IPA) should be taken.

  • Within 2 weeks of the arrival of the employee, the employer or the agent has to get the permit issued. They have to provide an address where the work permit card has to be delivered, and they also need to nominate at least 3 recipients and submit their IC/FIN/ passport numbers and contact numbers.

What is the validity of the work visa in Singapore?

A work permit or a work pass is usually issued for a working period of up to 2 years. However, it may vary from the Employment term and depends on various other details.

What is a suitable work visa for managers or executives in Singapore?

An Employment Pass or S Pass is suitable for workers in managerial or executive positions. To obtain these visas, you will need to be employed by the company first and the company will then proceed to apply for a suitable work visa for you.

Is there a difference between Singapore’s Employment Pass Visa and Singapore Work Permit?

Yes, there is. While both are commonly referred to as work permits, an Employment Pass is mostly suitable for professional foreigners who are in managerial or executive positions while a Singapore work permit is more suitable for foreigners hired to work mainly in the marine, construction, and manufacturing fields.