• Visa runs in Singapore

What is Visa Run?

Visa run is a brief trip over the international border to purposefully reset the visa validity of the originating country. This is very common between Singapore and Malaysia, and the timer resets when you exit one country and entry another. When leaving Singapore, the popular option is to leave via Singapore-Johor Causeway, spend a day to enjoy some shopping in Johar Bahru or see Legoland Malaysia, and again go back to Singapore for another 30/90 days.

If a foreigner has stayed for 30 days already and tries to do a visa return (or U-turn), there are 50/50 chance that he’ll be questioned on the purpose of Singapore stay. It is possible that he’ll be asked for an interview at the border and asked questions like where will you accommodate? When do you leave as per your plan? What are you doing in Singapore? Where do you work and from where did you get such money for a long vacation?

Some foreigners might not be stopped at first U-turn, but the chances increase with every entry, and it’ll be practically 100% after 4-5 times that questions will be asked.

Then it’ll be a game of answers, but it’s hard to satisfy them or prove that you are an addicted tourist to Singapore if you have spent 3-4 months here.

In case you fail to convince the officer that you are a tourist, the officer will refuse your entry (no matter even if you have a valid visa).

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Legality of Visa Run and Length of stay in Singapore

Traveling across borders for tourism is not a crime. However, if the purpose doing so is to aide in work or living arrangements where unauthorized, this may be illegal. For example, if a person is working in Singapore on a tourist visa, this is illegal. This person may go on a visa run to renew their visa, allowing them to stay in Singapore for an extended time – thus continuing their work in Singapore although not allowed to.

Your stay in Singapore depends upon your Nationality, and the visit can either be 30 or 90 days. The counting of the day started from the first day you step here (with the first full day being the day you step in). The countdown stops when you leave Singapore, and it resets for another 30 or 90 days once you again enter Singapore. Hopefully, it’ll be clear to you now that you can only stay for 30/90 days per visit. This stay period doesn’t affect how many times you visit. For every tour there is always 30/90 days permitted.

EP & Visa checker

What are the Legitimate Singapore Visa choices instead of visa run?

That’s why, if you are looking for a long-term relocation to Singapore, the options proposed below will be a good alternative for you.

  • Employment Pass 

    Employment Pass (EP) is best for foreign professionals, executives, and managers or for those having relevant qualifications. To qualify for EP, your salary needs to be at least 4500 SGD (3,300 USD) per month. The validity of the EP is up to 2 years. 

  • S Pass

    S Pass is best for mid-level skilled staff who meets assessment criteria. As long as you earn at least 2,500 SGD (1,800USD) per month, you can apply for S Pass. The validity of S Pass is up to 2 years. S Pass is popular among employees who work in the entertainment, construction, manufacturing, marine shipyard, process, or service sectors.

  • Entre Pass

    If you would like to venture your business into the Singapore market, you can apply for Entre Pass. It will lead you to get permanent residence in Singapore as well.

Conclusion

Once ICA and MOM have blacklisted you as high risk in their system for multiple Visa Runs, it will be difficult to enter Singapore again. Alternatively, there is many legitimate visa available for foreigners who want to work and stay in Singapore.

FAQs

How can I check my visa validity?2020-10-21T16:57:30+08:00

The visa validity is printed on the visa. 

Can I apply for Singapore Visa Online?2020-10-21T16:57:16+08:00

Yes. You can apply for Singapore Visa online.

Is visa run legal?2020-10-21T16:56:32+08:00

It is not a crime to travel across borders for tourism is not a crime. Visa run is only illegal if you do it to aid in work or living arrangements.  

How long can I stay in Singapore?2020-10-21T16:54:52+08:00

Depends upon your Nationality, can either be 30 or 90 days. The counting of the day started from the first day you step there (with the first full day being the day you step in). The countdown stops when you leave Singapore, and it resets for another 30 or 90 days once you again enter Singapore. This stay period doesn’t affect how many times you visit. For every tour there’s always 30/90 days are permitted.

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