Singapore’s stable economy and safe environment has attracted many foreigners to come visit, many of whom have eventually decided to settle down in Singapore for the long term. Whether living alone in Singapore or moving here with family, as with any country, visitors and travelers require different visas and visit passes depending on the duration and purpose of their stay. For those who wish to visit Singapore, whether short-term or long-term, certain visa requirements may apply.
In this article, we will summaries the differences between a Short-Term Visit Pass (STVP) and a Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP) so that you can easily choose which one will apply to you based on your needs.
The STVP is generally the visa that is issued at the point of entry for most foreign visitors to Singapore. All short-term visitors to Singapore will receive an STVP upon entry, whether the visit is for tourism, social visiting, or for medical treatment. Most visitors are eligible for visa-free entry to Singapore, meaning that you will not need to apply for a visa to travel to Singapore. However, you will still need to have the STVP in order to enter Singapore, as it stipulates the amount of time short-term visitors are allowed to stay.
The LTVP, on the other hand, is a visa offered to specific groups of people who are related to those residing in Singapore long-term. All LTVP applicants will require a local sponsor, except for graduates seeking employment.
You are eligible to apply for a LTVP if you are one of the following:
- Spouse of a Singapore Citizen or PR
- Unmarried child under 21 of a Singapore Citizen or PR
- Parent of a Singapore Citizen or PR above 21 years old
- Mother or grandmother of a student in Singapore, studying on a Student Pass
- A visitor seeking permission to give birth in Singapore
- A graduate from an Institute of Higher Learning seeking employment in Singapore
Employment Pass and S Pass holders in Singapore can also apply for the LTVP for certain family members. The Pass holder must be earning a salary of at least $6000 monthly and be sponsored by an established, Singapore-registered company. The LTVP will only be available for: a common-law spouse, unmarried handicapped children aged 21 and above, and unmarried step-children under 21 years old. For legally married spouses and children under 21, the Pass holder may apply for a Dependent’s Pass instead. Those who earn a monthly fixed salary of at least $12,000 may apply for the pass for their parents.
Below is a table summarizing the main differences between the STVP and LTVP, other than eligibility:
|The STVP is issued in the form of an electronic pass through email.||The LTVP is issued as a physical card, not an electronic pass.|
|Valid for a maximum period of 30 days, after which an extension must be requested.||Valid for 2 years, with an LTVP Plus (LTVP+) option for those eligible that allows a stay of up to 5 years.|
|An extension must be requested seven days before the expiry of your STVP, after which you will be considered overstaying, which is a criminal offence.||Renewal can be requested up to 6 months before expiry. If the outcome process is taking too long, you may apply for an STVP in the meantime.|
|STVP holders are not allowed to take up any type of paid employment in Singapore during their stay.||LTVP holders may request for a Letter of Consent (LOC) from the government if they wish to be employed.|
|The STVP is issued to travelers upon entry to Singapore. LTVP applicants will need an STVP initially as well.||It takes up to 6 weeks for approval to be obtained on an LTVP application, and some cases may take longer.|
In conclusion, you may apply for STVP if you are simply visiting and do not intend to reside in Singapore with a family member for a long time. Tourists and other short-term visitors will receive the STVP upon entry. If you intend to stay in Singapore for more than 30 days with a relative residing in Singapore, then you should apply for an LTVP.
If you would like more detailed advice or help with your LTVP or STVP application, please feel free to contact our consultants at www.xignam.com for advice tailored to your needs.
 Some visitors will need to apply for a visa in order to enter Singapore before receiving the STVP, depending on their country of origin. If you are unsure of the entry requirements for your country of origin, please visit the ICA website for specific details: https://www.ica.gov.sg/enter-transit-depart/entering-singapore/visa_requirements.
 A new LTVP application for foreign spouse of Singapore citizen who did not submit a Pre-Marriage Long-Term Visit Pass Assessment (PMLA) will be processed within six months.