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Guide to International & Local Insurances for Expats in Singapore

4 min read|Last Updated: August 5, 2022|
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Insurance is important to protect your well-being and income, especially since Covid-19, but do you know the fundamental benefits of having an insurance in Singapore? Whether you plan to start a company or work in the city-state, getting an insurance should be one of your top priorities.
There are various types of expats or foreign insurances in Singapore, and they usually fall into two categories:

What Are the Differences Between International & Local Insurances?

When considering between international or local insurances in Singapore, there are several pointers to take note of.

  • Extent of Coverage

    • Local Insurance (use the same icon as above)provides additional coverage within Singapore borders  
    • International Insurance: provides coverage in multiple parts of the world, some even provide global coverage

    Although some local insurance plans include insurance coverage abroad, the coverage is limited to what is deemed acceptable according to the healthcare costs of Singapore and may only be used during emergencies.

  • Maternity Coverage

    • Local Insurance: Does not cover maternity and childbirth costs 
    • International Insurance: Comes with add-ons for maternity charges and costs of childbirth 

    If you’re intending to have children while living in Singapore, go for the international insurance plan!

  • Validity

    • Local Insurance: Remains valid unless its purchaser has failed to make necessary payments  
    • International Insurance: Most plans continue to be valid even after one leaves Singapore
  • Premiums & Deductibles

    • Local Insurance: Accompanied by a deductible unless one purchases an add-on which covers the cost of the deductible 
    • International Insurance: Allows you to select any desired deductibles and some may prefer to pay a higher premium than usual to avoid paying deductible.
  • Co-Payment Amounts

    • Local Insurance: Includes a co-payment portion with a minimum rate of 5%, however, able to opt to buy an add-on to limit maximum value of annual co-payment amounts 
    • International Insurance: Option to select one of multiple co-payment amounts and choose to pay a premium at a higher rate to avoid paying for co-insurance 

Insurance Payments and Premiums in Singapore

Going deeper into payments and premiums, both types of insurances have quite vast differences when it comes to how much one needs to pay for the insurance and payment methods such as:

  • International insurances are typically more expensive than local insurances

  • International insurances require more specific premiums to be paid

  • International insurances generally are seen as value for money because of its added benefits

  • Dependable on your age – the older you are, the higher the value of the premiums

Bringing it all together, local insurance premiums are generally cheaper than international insurance premiums as the areas of protection are only applicable within Singapore, while international insurance premiums are more costly due to its extensive coverage and added benefits.

How Foreigners May Purchase International Insurance in Singapore

If you are a foreigner or expat and are interested in purchasing an international insurance in Singapore, you may do so from either a local insurance provider or an insurer based out of Singapore. You may also purchase your international insurance plan online for those insurers are not physically in Singapore.

International vs Local Insurance: The Choice is Yours

Both international and local insurance have their own benefits and reasons to why they should be purchased. Whether if you choose international or local insurance, all foreigners and expats living in Singapore are encouraged to be covered by at least some sort of insurance.

If you are a foreigner who is relocating to Singapore for work, let us make that work for you by helping you to secure your Singapore Employment Pass (EP)! Once that is secured, you can begin considering the insurance plans that is most suitable for you.

Secure your EP today

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FAQs

Is there any insurance related to the organising of events in Singapore?2021-08-19T16:52:17+08:00

Those who organise an event in Singapore are advised to purchase insurance before doing so. Event organisers who work for a client will also occasionally require insurance for event liabilities as per the client’s demands before the job may be accepted. This insurance ought to provide for property damages or losses as well as comprehensive general public liability of a sum which does not exceed S$1 million per claim.

What forms of insurance may be obtained by students in Singapore?2021-08-19T16:47:46+08:00

Many higher education institutions in Singapore offer their students certain forms of insurance. Such forms of insurance usually include travel insurance, insurance for personal accidents, and insurance for hospitalisation, among others. 

However, it should also be noted that insurance provided by educational institutions grants a bare minimum of protection. Students who desire additional forms of protection through insurance are advised to own a form of personal insurance which provides many other forms of coverage which are not addressed by that provided by a school or university.

Are foreigners of any nationality eligible to receive insurance in Singapore?2021-08-19T16:45:50+08:00

Foreigners in Singapore of any nationality may use insurance policies in Singapore. They may take advantage of benefits provided which are related to health, travel, medical, car, home, or life insurance.

Many foreigners who live and work in Singapore are also insured by their employers; however, such insurance might not necessarily provide all the coverage which may be needed. Those who find that the insurance provided by their employers is deficient in some regards are therefore encouraged to purchase their own insurance to receive more personalised and suitable coverage. 

Can a foreigner be insured by insurance plans in Singapore and another country at the same time?2021-08-19T16:43:04+08:00

A person can be insured in Singapore and another foreign country at the same time. However, certain problems may arise for those who are using local insurance from Singapore which does not cover them globally. Thus, if such a person faces any health-related problems in another country, the person must pay for any necessary expenses.

However, those who use international insurance from Singapore can take advantage of the insurance benefits regardless of their location at any given time. Local insurance covers foreigners who return to Singapore for treatment. Foreigners who have international insurance but choose not to return to Singapore can opt out of the insurance policies which are to be used in the country. Those who do so are released from the burden of paying a premium. 

Is there any insurance related to the organizing of events in Singapore?2020-07-03T15:12:04+08:00

Those who organize an event in Singapore are advised to purchase insurance before doing so. Event organizers who work for a client will also occasionally require insurance for event liabilities as per the client’s demands before the job may be accepted. This insurance ought to provide for property damages or losses as well as comprehensive general public liability of a sum which does not exceed S$1 million per claim.

What forms of insurance may be obtained by students in Singapore?2020-07-03T15:11:17+08:00

Many institutions of higher education in Singapore offer their students certain forms of insurance. Such forms of insurance usually include travel insurance, insurance for personal accidents, and insurance for hospitalization, among others.
However, it should also be noted that insurance provided by educational institutions grants a bare minimum of protection. Students who desire additional forms of protection through insurance are advised to own a form of personal insurance which provides many other forms of coverage which are not addressed by that provided by a school or university.

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