work visa

Work visa: employment pass Singapore vs S pass

 Singapore is a relatively small country compared to its neighbors. However, its economy has always been one of the best in the world. Over the years it has proven to have a resilient economy when it comes to the different economic crises. It also offers visas such as the employment pass Singapore permit.


Today, Singapore houses thousands of different businesses from industries that offer various services. It still welcomes new ones even if it already houses different businesses. The existence of these businesses has opened doors to many individuals in the form of a job opportunity. 


However, the population of Singaporean locals cannot sustain the demand for employees in Singapore. That is the reason why the Singaporean government issues a work visa to individuals. A work visa will serve as proof that you are legally hired and working in the Singaporean market.


There many types of visas like the employment pass Singapore permit. The work visa that you will be applying for would depend on your experience and other qualification. Singaporean officials make sure that these visas are properly differentiated to maintain implementing fair benefits to these individuals. Two of the most common are the employment pass and S pass out of all the work visas that Singapore issues.


So, in this article, let us talk about the difference between these two work passes. 

General requirements

Let’s first talk about the general requirements in acquiring a work visa before diving into the specific requirements of these work visas. The first qualification that all interested applicants must fulfill is to be of legal age or at least 18 years old on the date of their application. Singapore does not allow minors to work in its economy under any circumstance. 


Since they are foreign nationals who are applying for a job in Singapore they should also be legal passport holders of their country of origin. In addition, they should be qualified when it comes to academic background and training experience for the position that there are applying for.


There are different qualifications for work visas so it is important that you are experienced in the job you want. You would be needing to present supporting documents like university diplomas or training certificates to prove that you are eligible for the work visa. 

Employment pass Singapore permit

This work visa is for foreign nationals that have a pending work invitation to Singapore. One of the first qualifications that they have to meet is earning at least SGD4,500 monthly. The employment pass Singapore permit is for workers who have directorial, managerial, executive positions or those that have a specialized job offer. 


If an individual wants to apply for the employment pass Singapore permit they should have the right credentials such as a university degree to back their knowledge on the job. It is also preferable to have relevant skills training and other certificates. 


Older candidates who are interested to apply for the employment pass Singapore permit would have to have double the qualifying salary. This new criterion will apply to those who will renew their employment pass Singapore permit from May 1, 2021. 


When it comes to the validity of the employment pass Singapore permit, it is valid from one to two years after issuance. Holders can renew this permit for up to three years, given that their employers are still willing to hire them and that their passports are valid within the period Singapore requires. 


One of the many perks of this work visa is that they can also bring their family along in Singapore. If you want to apply for a dependent pass for your family members you should be earning at least SGD6,000 and this is an active employment pass Singapore holder.


A legally married spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 can get the dependant pass.  Common-law spouses, unmarried handicapped children under the age of 21, and parents of the employment pass holder are eligible for a long-term visit pass. 


Your employer should be the one to apply for your family members’ passes to Singapore. Each family member would need to submit one application each. All in all the application for the employment pass would cost you around SGD230.

S pass

Mid-skilled foreign nationals are also eligible for a work visa in Singapore. They should be earning at least SGD2,500. Although this salary qualification may change as the applicant get older and more experienced.


An applicant should be a university degree holder or has a diploma. Singapore considers technical certificates as long as it is really want to the job that the individual is applying for. The certificate should be at least one year worth of academics. 


Singapore offers a self-assessment tool to determine whether or not you are qualified for this kind of work visa. The employer or a third-party agency should apply for the S pass work visa.  This kind of work visa is valid for up to two years after issuance and is also renewable. The employer will issue medical insurance to S pass holders. 


Just like the employment pass Singapore permit, an individual who has an S pass is also eligible to bring their family along in Singapore. The kind of permit that their family members will get is the same as the employment pass holders’ family members. Their employers should also be the ones to apply for their immediate family. 

Apply now

Many individuals want to work in Singapore because it offers many possibilities. You can hire Ren Ai Group as the third-party agency that can help you process your application. Check out our website today to know your options. 

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