Student Visa

You can apply for a Student Pass to study in Singapore on the basis that you meet all the required criteria. All new applications for a Student’s Pass must be submitted at least one month and not more than two months before the commencement of the course. You will get decision on your student visa application within 2 weeks.

Generally, graduates will be granted a Short-Term Visit Pass after their student pass has been cancelled/expired, this visa will allow students to stay in Singapore for an up to 90 days period.

Money you need

Course fee

You need enough money to pay for your course. The amount you need to pay will be on your Offer Letter. Money to support yourself (‘financial requirement’)

Cost for student only – Evidence of funds to cover living expenses and your course fee.

You must show evidence that you have immediate access to at least SGD $8,400. This is the estimated cost of living in Singapore for a student for one academic year.

Evidence you can provide for your funds can include funds that are in liquid form. Following are the most acceptable sources:

  • Bank Balance: As per the student visa rules, candidate has to show funds which must be minimum 1 day old from date of visa application.
  • Fixed Deposits: If it’s a fixed deposit, then bank must issue a letter confirming the availability of the funds. Bank letter must be dated less than 30 days from the date of visa.
  • Bank Loan: If you have taken an education loan, then you will have to provide bank loan sanction letter. The educational loan must be unconditional ie. no formalities should be pending (except for receiving visa itself) before the funds could be disbursed to your university.

Steps to apply for Singapore Student Visa

  1. Accept an admit at an Institute of Higher Learning (IHL): Institute of Higher Learning (IHL) in Singapore includes Universities and colleges. To become eligible for a student pass, every student needs to enrol in an IHL approved by the Singaporean authorities.
  2. Student’s Pass Online Application and Registration (SOLAR) service: It is mandatory for all international students to apply for their student pass through the SOLAR online service on the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) website. The process starts with IHL providing SOLAR with your personal information.
  3. SOLAR application reference number: Once IHL registers you with the SOLAR receive, your IHL will provide you an unique application number that can be used to access SOLAR.
  4. Complete the application on SOLAR: Once you successfully login to SOLAR, you need to complete the eForm16. Please note that you need to print a copy of the completed form as this has to be presented to the ICA center in Singapore.
  5. Application fee: You will be required to pay a standard processing fee of $30 prior to submitting your application.
  6. Application decision: The usual turnaround time on applications is 2 weeks.
  7. In-Principal Approval (IPA) letter: If your application is successful, you should expect to receive an IPA letter. This is a very important document acts as it is your temporary student pass and grants you entry into Singapore.
  8. Visit pass: Upon presenting your IPA to officials at the Singaporean port of entry, you will be issued with a visit pass.
  9. Appointment at an ICA center: Once you arrive in Singapore, you will need to visit an ICA center to collect your official student pass. The list of required documents is outlined below. You will be required to pay a fee of $60 upon collection.

Here is the list of documents required to apply for student visa:

  • Letter of acceptance from university
  • Passport valid for at least 3 months beyond the duration of your stay
  • Filled out application forms for Student Visas, Form V36 and ICA Form 16
  • SOLAR registration acknowledgment letter from your university
  • In-Principal Approval (IPA) letter
  • Passport size photos
  • Proof of funds
  • Academic documents (in English)
  • Test results asked by your University like TOEFL, GRE, IELTS or GMAT
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Current or previous employment documents
  • Proof of Medical Insurance
  • Accommodation details for where you’ll be living in Singapore

Work Part-Time while you study

As a Student Pass holder in Singapore, you have the rights to work part-time while studying, which will help you support your expenses. These permissions are automatically granted along with your student pass. Students can work up to 16 hours per week during term-time and full-time during the university holidays.

Post Study Work Visa

International students can apply for Short-Term Visit Pass once their student pass expires. Gradates need to apply for this visa if they wish to work in Singapore. This visa allows students to stay in Singapore for an up to 90 days period and look for a job, but at the same time it does not allow you to take any type of employment while you are on this visa.

If a student has graduated from a university which falls in the list of Institute of Higher Learning, and is willing to look for employment in Singapore, a student might have an option to apply for a one-year (non-renewable) Long-term Social Visit Pass (LTVP). International students under this visa can work and live in Singapore for one year.

Apart from this there are three other types of work visa options available for International Students working in Singapore after there graduation.

Employment Pass – This visa allows foreign professionals to work in managerial, executive or skilled job. This visa provides good opportunity for international students to work in Singapore after their studies. Employment pass comes with certain criteria as follows-

  • The employer has to sponsor applicant’s visa
  • Applicants must meet a minimum salary of S$4,500 per month
  • Applicants must have some professional qualification/degree from a good university

S Pass – This visa allows mid skilled foreign professionals to work as technicians or specialists in Singapore. This visa provides good opportunity for international students to work in Singapore after their studies. S pass comes with certain criteria as follows-

  • The employer has to sponsor applicant’s visa
  • Applicants must meet a minimum salary of S$2,500 per month
  • Applicants must have some professional qualification/degree/diploma from a good university

EntrePass – Entre Pass is a visa route for international students, who aspire to develop ideas or skills by setting up a business in Singapore. You would need to start a private limited company that is registered with Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA), Singapore. Students would also be required to meet other criteria to be eligible for EntrePass.

Below table gives a good overview of restrictions and conditions for different post study work visas.

Types of Post Study Work Visa with Requirements

Type of VisaRestrictionVisa DurationRenewableSponsorship NeededDependents Allowed
Long-Term Visit PassGraduates from the institutes of higher learning1 yearNoNoNo
Employment PassMinimum salary of S$4,500 per month2-3 yearsYesYesYes (meet minimum salary criteria of S$6,000)
S PassMinimum salary of S$2,400 per month2 yearsYesYesYes (meet minimum salary criteria of S$6,000)
EntrePassRegistered with ACRA*1-2 yearsYesNoYes (annual business spending must be at least S$100,000)