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Complete guide to obtaining a Singapore retirement visa, the required documents, and the best places for retirees

With rapid growth from a low-income country to a high-income country, Singapore, officially the Republic of Singapore, is ranked amongst the world’s most competitive economies.

The high quality of life the Southeast Asian country offers has attracted more than 2 million expats to move in permanently.

While some countries promote foreigners who want to retire there by offering retirement visas, Singapore does the opposite. The country does not offer a retirement program or visa for retired foreigners who want to make Singapore their second home.

However, this does not mean there are no other ways you can reside long-term in breathtaking Singapore.

How Can I Retire in Singapore?

Singapore does not have a special retirement visa or retirement program dedicated to foreigners who want to reside permanently. Therefore, to retire in Singapore, you must get a permanent residency (PR) for a long-term stay in the country.

Unfortunately, the options to receive permanent residence in Singapore are limited unless you are willing to invest or work for the required years.

You can get permanent residency in Singapore in one of the following ways:

  • Employment Pass. The Employment Pass is available to foreign managers, executives, and professionals. To be eligible for this type of visa, you must make at least S$3600 per month.
  • EntrePass (Investor Program). The EntrePass is a business visa available to foreign investors, innovators, or entrepreneurs who wish to start a business in Singapore. There are specific requirements for each category that must be met to be eligible for this type of work visa.
  • S Pass. This type of work pass is for mid-level skilled workers who receive a monthly salary of S$2300 and have the proper qualifications and work experience.

How Much Money Do I Need to Retire in Singapore?

Here is a presentation of the average living costs in Singapore:

ACCOMMODATION (rent)Monthly Cost
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center$2230
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center$1600
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center$4430
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Center $2800
ACCOMMODATIONPRICE per m2
Price for purchasing an apartment in City Centre$20000
Price for purchasing an apartment Outside of Centre$9500
FOODCOSTS
Milk$2.35
Rice $2.25
Eggs$2.60
Tomato$2.60
Potato$2.05
Apples (kg)$3.30
UTILITIESMONTHLY COSTS (85m2)
Electricity, Water, Heating, Cooling, Garbage$4250

Healthcare For Retirees in Singapore 

The Singapore healthcare system is under the domain of the Ministry of Health of the Government of Singapore, and it is ranked top for the most efficient healthcare. Singapore offers its citizens and legal residents universal healthcare with modern technology and a highly qualified staff of doctors and nurses.

For health insurance, you can choose between several health plans. The most common ones are:

  • MediShield Life is a basic health insurance scheme that provides universal and lifelong protection against healthcare bills, regardless of age or health conditions. MediShield Life helps citizens of Singapore pay for large hospital bills and some outpatient treatments such as dialysis and chemotherapy for cancer.
  • Integrated Shield Plan provides higher coverage than MediShield Life at more cost. If you want more coverage, you should upgrade to an Integrated Shield Plan. Different types of IPs provide different coverage. To receive ISHP, you should consider your budget since the premiums rise with age.

Why Retire in Singapore?

Singapore might seem like a heave for individuals who are looking for a new home that meets all their needs. But before making a decision, take a look at what the beautiful country can offer you.

Here is why you should retire in Singapore:

  • Safety. Singapore is ranked as one of the safest countries in the world, with low crime rates, a transparent legal system, and a reliable police force.
  • Life Quality. Singapore ranks high in many areas, and quality of life makes no exemption. The country is ranked as the top city in Asia in terms of quality of living. In Singapore, you can have a modern and quiet life, with good infrastructure, schools, health services, etc.
  • Healthcare. Healthcare in Singapore is considered one of the best in the world. Singapore offers both public and private healthcare for its citizens and legal residents. As a legal resident of Singapore, you will have access to medical services and qualified staff in modernized health facilities.
  • Taxation System. Referred to as tax heaven due to the benefits it offers, Singapore has seen a dramatic rise in the economy. The tax rate for personal income is one of the lowest in the world.
  • Housing. Singapore has a unique housing system built mostly by the Housing & Development Board (HDB), which results in the country’s homeownership rate of 90% being the hights among market economies. Under the housing ownership program, the housing units are sold on a 99-year leasehold to applicants who meet the requirements.

What Are the Best Places for Retirees in Singapore?

Life in Singapore will offer you safety, cleanliness, and a high standard of living. The country has some of the best neighborhoods where you can enjoy a comfortable retirement. Here’s a guide to the best places to live for retired foreigners in Singapore.

Holland Village

Do not let the name village fool you because Holland Village is not a typical rural area in the suburbs. Holland Village often referred to as Holland V, is a neighborhood in the Central Region of Singapore. The neighborhood is a popular shopping and dining area for young people and expats. Many food chains in Singapore are located in Holland Village. The area is characterized by more up-market dining options such as ethnic restaurants and franchises such as Tapas Bar.

Tiong Bahru

Tiong Bahru is Singapore’s oldest housing estate and one of the most interesting residential neighborhoods with a mix of unique architecture, boutiques, old-fashioned traditions, and delicious food. One of the best things about living in Tiong Bahru is the convenient location. No matter in which part of the neighborhood you live in, you will find it easy to move around the area, whether you take the bus or train.

Tanjong Pagar

A historic district located within the Central Business District, Tanjong Pagar is food heaven for food lovers. In Tanjong Pagar, you will find some of the tastiest dishes in Singapore. There are many fancy restaurants where you can enjoy a meal or even two a day because the delicious taste will make you come back for more.

Sentosa

If spending your retirement in an island resort is your wish, then Sentosa is the best option. Sentosa is an island located off the southern coast of Singapore’s main island. The island is home to one of the world’s biggest oceanariums, the S.E.A. Aquarium, and beautiful beaches. Thanks to the bus services, you can have easy access to every attraction on the island.

Woodlands

Woodlands is a planning area and residential town in the North Region of Singapore. The area is known for the greenery, parks, and rubber trees, which is where the name Woodlands comes from. Woodlands is mostly popular with American expats because of the Singapore American School located here.

In Woodlands, you can find many recreational facilities, shopping centers, and medical clinics, making Woodland a great place to live.

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