Singapore passports to be valid for 10 years, up from 5, for applications from October: ICA

This will be the case for citizens over 16 years old who apply for their passports on or after Oct 1, 2021.
This will be the case for citizens over 16 years old who apply for their passports on or after Oct 1, 2021.ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

SINGAPORE - Singapore passports will be valid for 10 years, up from the current five.

This will be the case for citizens over 16 years old who apply for their passports on or after Oct 1, 2021.

The fee remains unchanged at $70.

The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) said on Friday (May 7) that this will reduce the frequency of passport renewals and offer more convenience to Singaporeans.

For citizens below the age 16, the passport validity period will remain at five years, as children's facial features continue to change as they grow.

This means that the photograph on their passport needs to be updated more frequently.

The Singapore passport used to be valid for 10 years until April 2005. The validity period was reduced to five years when the biometric passport system was introduced.

It was reduced for the ICA to monitor the stability of the technology, the authority said.

Explaining the reasons for a change back to a validity period of 10 years, the ICA said: "It has been 15 years since the introduction of the biometric passport. There is now widespread use of biometric screening technology by immigration authorities around the world."

The ICA added that biometric passport technology has now stabilised and that it has greater confidence in the durability of the microchips embedded in such passports.

"In view of these developments, ICA has assessed that it is now viable to increase the validity of the Singapore passport to 10 years without compromising security or global confidence in the Singapore passport," it said.