If you’re going to study in Singapore, you will need to process your student visa before you leave your home country. This document is necessary for you to stay and continue your studies legally in the country. In Singapore, their term for a student visa is “student pass.” You need to apply for this if your program is more than 30 days.

Since Singapore highly values education, they have made their student pass application straightforward and accessible to every incoming international student. They utilize the Student’s Pass Online Application and Registration system, also known as the SOLAR, the official registration system of Singapore.

To make your preparation easier, we will discuss the documents you should prepare and the step-by-step procedure for applying for a Singapore student visa. Indeed, after getting a student visa, you’ll be able to study in Singapore and experience their unique culture.

Steps on Applying for a Singaporean Student Visa

The whole student visa application in Singapore may take more than a month, so it is recommended to get a student visa two months before the start of your study program. Once you’ve chosen your institution and program, you may start applying for a student visa. All student pass applications are made by their e-services.

The good thing about Singapore’s student visa is that IHLs help with your whole application. Their system, the SOLAR, is organized and well ordered, lessening your exhaustion in applying.

Step 1. Complete the Whole Admission Process in Your Chosen IHL

If you already applied to a Singaporean university, you must receive an offer letter or an admission letter from them. Usually, the offer letter is given after you made your tuition fee payments.

Step 2. Apply for a Student Pass through the SOLAR Website

After getting your admission letter, your respective IHLs will register you in the SOLAR system and give you a SOLAR reference number for getting your Singapore student visa. Since they’ve applied for you, they will also start your online registration in the system by providing basic information about you.

With your SOLAR reference number, kindly log in to the website. You need to double-check the information entered by your IHL. Look out for misspelled names or incorrect information. Usually, along with your basic information, they also fill up the details regarding your study program.

Step 3. Answer the eForm 16 and Submit the Requirements

To answer the eForm 16, you should have details such as your passport number with the expiration date, email address, passport-sized photograph, and your accommodation address and contact number in Singapore. If you don’t have a place in Singapore yet, you can put the address of your IHL.

Additionally, you will be required to answer some questions about your travel, such as the list of countries you’ve traveled to and others. When uploading a passport-sized picture, please follow their guidelines. It must clearly show your facial features, and it should be in a JPEG format, not exceeding 60 KB.

The length of the whole process of completing the forms may depend on your chosen IHL.

Step 4. Pay the Visa Application Fee

After answering the application form and attaching the requirements, you should pay the application fee for your student visa in Singapore mandated by ICA.

Step 5. Processing Your Student Pass

The processing time for a Singapore student visa depends on your country. Some Singaporean embassies may only take ten days to process a student pass, but they can be extended to four weeks.

Also, the months of July and August are the peak time in student pass applications, so the process might be slower if you applied between these months.

Step 6. Receive an IPA Letter

If your application is successful, you’ll receive an In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter. ICA gives this document through your respective IHLs, and it states that your application for a Singaporean student pass is approved. All approved student visa application receives this official letter along with a Singapore student visa.

Additionally, you need to follow further instructions in the IPA letter when you enter Singapore.

Step 7. Fly to Singapore and Receive Your Student Visa

Through your IPA letter, you’ll receive a student visa when you arrived in Singapore. When you’re done sending the documents to ICA, you’ll be able to get your student visa and start your studies.

Documents Needed for Singaporean Student Visa Applications

After being admitted to a Singaporean university, you should plot your timeline for processing your student visa, including the documents you need to prepare beforehand. Since waiting for a student take two to four weeks, please complete these documents to avoid delays or visa rejections.

Here are the documents needed:

  • A copy of your passport (It should still be valid after the duration of your study program.)
  • A recent passport-sized photo of you
  • A copy of a valid identification card
  • Completed application forms (eForm 16 and eForm V36). These are available on the website of Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) – Singapore.
  • The offer letter or the admission letter from the Institutes of Higher Learning (IHL). (In Singapore, they refer to their universities as IHLs)
  • Proof of financial resources, including bank statements, to show funds supporting your studies (tuition fee for the whole duration of your study program.)
  • Transcript of records and other educational certificates from your previous program and institutions
  • A copy of your birth certificate
  • Medical certificate
  • Results of standardized tests such as English proficiency tests and others.

All documents should be translated into English, and please note that other documents might be requested depending on your home country’s Singaporean embassy or consulate.

FAQs: Student Visa Applications for Singapore

How Much Money Do You Need for Singapore’s Student Visa?

The cost of a Singaporean student visa is divided into two: the visa processing fee and the visa issuance fee. The first one, the visa processing fee, should be paid when you submit your documents, and it cost SGD 30. On the other hand, the visa issuance fee costs SGD 60 and is paid upon your student visa release.

You can pay both fees through credit/debit cards or by internet banking. If your student pass application is denied, you don’t need to pay the visa issuance fee.


We hope that this article on how to receive a student visa in Singapore was helpful. If you’re interested in studying abroad make sure to check out the Available Programs for International Students!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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