As part of the notification dated October 2016 by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) of Singapore, Indian nationals who are in transit to or from any third country by air may be eligible for the 96-hour Visa Free Transit Facility (VFTF) for one transit in the itinerary (either forward or return leg, but not both) if they:
1) Have a valid onward air ticket departing within the next 96-hours; and
2) Possess a valid visa/long-term pass (with a validity of at least 1 month from the date of entry into Singapore under the VFTF) issued by any of the following countries**:
** A visa is considered valid if it is not expired and is good for entry into the third country.
The VFTF for Indian nationals is for air to air travel only and is only valid for one transit in the itinerary (either forward or return leg, but not both).
Single Journey Visas (SJV) issued by the above countries are also acceptable when transiting through Singapore on the onward or return leg of the same journey. For those on the return leg of the journey, i.e. after the SJV has been utilised, the following conditions must be met:
- The traveller travels directly from the country that issued the SJV, on route through Singapore, directly back to the home country; and
- The traveller has not returned to their home country since the SJV was last utilised.
Transit travellers who satisfy the criteria for VFTF will have to meet the prevailing entry requirements before they are allowed entry into Singapore. Assessment for entry is determined by the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers at the point of entry.
Extension of stay for transit travellers under the VFTF is strictly not allowed
By relaxing the rules, the authorities have surely increased the attractiveness of Singapore as a transit destination, at least for Indians. Also, unlike the Changi Transit Programme where you can get free money to spend at Changi airport, this facility is available on all airlines.
For the exact notification from the ICA and options for non-Indian passport holders, visit Visa Requirements.
Will this make you consider Singapore as a transit destination for your next adventure?