UPDATE – This post was written in 2015. Please check for the latest update on the Tourist Visa process on their official website HERE.
Who doesn’t hate visa hassles? Every time while planning an international vacation, our first criteria for selecting a destination is always VOA countries.
Unfortunately, Singapore is not part of VOA countries (we wish it was) and getting a tourist visa for Singapore is bit tricky but easy process.
Most of the visas that we had applied for in the past were either e-visa, on arrival visa or dropping document and passports at VFS. However, the visa process for Singapore was a different experience altogether as the consulate of Singapore has stopped accepting the visa application from individuals rather they only accept visa filed through their recognized travel agents.
We recently applied for Singapore Tourist visa for the both of us and in this post, we share with you everything that you need to know before applying for a Singapore Tourist visa. You don’t have to worry if you’re opting for tour packages.
– Prerequisite –
Unlike other countries, you can apply for Singapore visa only after booking your flights and hotels.
- Hotel Booking Details
- Flight Booking Details
If you have family or friends you can just book flights and ask them to file your visa application using their Singpass account.
There are two ways to apply for Tourist Visa
1) SingPass Account
Any local resident of Singapore has a Singpass account and can help you in filing your visa. This reduces the hassle of going through any travel agent but you need to know someone who is a local resident of Singapore. Unfortunately, we do not have any friends or family in Singapore, so we were not able to apply through the Singpass Account. The same set of documents is required for the visa process even if you apply through the Singpass Account.
2) Authorized Travel Agents
There are a total 32 agents mostly based out of Kolkata & New Delhi.
Our first choice was Make My Trip but we were informed that they only process Singapore visa if either flights or tour package is booked through their site, our next choice was Cox & Kings – they were unable to process our visa as their account with the Singapore Consulate was not working and then we called Forex guys – They said it will take 7-10 working days to process from Bangalore and we have to submit all the document to the Forex office which is on MG Road. Bummer !!
To add to all the woes, we had just 7 days with us to board a flight. ( PS: This is what happens when you don’t plan well in advance, you land yourself in a soup).
So, after reading a few other blogs we went ahead with a travel agency that goes by the name – Trawellday (Website: trawellday.in), truth to be told we were a little skeptical at the beginning, so instead of asking them to collect our documents, we went directly to their office to submit all the documents and passport. The office is at Jayanagar and is quite small and can easily be reached by following the GPS direction. After checking and getting all the info about the processing time and visa fee we decided to apply for the visa through them. We paid INR 2750/- per person. They sent the passports to Chennai the very next day and the e-visa was filed. Once the e-visa was approved, it was printed and couriered back with the passports. We submitted all the documents and passports on a Thursday and we got our passport in 5 working days i.e on a Wednesday.
They do charge INR 200/- for pick up and delivery of documents as well.
– Documents Needed –
1) Printouts of Hotel & Flight Booking Details
2) 2 Passport Size Photos Matt finish, click here for photo specifications.
3) Signed and completely filled 14 A document. You can download it from the official site. Check HERE.
4) Cover letter stating your purpose of visit and duration of stay.
Additional Documents that we submitted so that there would be no delay in the processing:
1) HR Letter ( Since our passports were not issued in Karnataka )
2) 6 Months Bank Statement
– Processing Time –
3-5 Working days
Most of the travel agencies usually keep the passport with them during the application process so that they can immediately send the passport to the consulate if it’s needed.
– Visa Fee –
Singapore Visa – 1456 INR i.e. ( 30 SGD) as of 5th October 2016 + Fees Charged by the Agency
Note: The total fee varies from agency to agency. If you have more time on you, go with the one with the cheapest quote as well. We know we paid more but unfortunately, we had no time and thankfully we received our passport and visa on time which was our main concern as we did not want to reschedule our flights.
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