immigration
Singapore makes immigration easy for Japan and South Korea passport holders beginning August 28, 2019. ICA Screengrab

Singapore has unveiled a new program to welcome travelers with passports from Japan and South Korea with automated clearance at the immigration, starting from Wednesday, Aug. 28.

However, it is attached with riders such as pre-enrollment for the Frequent Traveller Programme by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) at Changi Airport's Terminal 3.

Being extended to Japan and South Korea nationals who are at least six years old, with passports valid for six more months and those who have visited Singapore at least twice in the past two years.

Those interested can apply at the enrollment centres at Changi Airport, the visitor services centre at the ICA Building, as well as at the Woodlands and Tuas checkpoints and the facility is being provided free of cost.

Even departures have been made easier by Singapore with the introduction of hassle-free departure that required no longer any stamp at the immigration, from April 22. For more details, visit ICA on its website at www.ica.gov.sg

Earlier this month, Singapore extended foreign visitors on selected transport operators to submit electronic arrival cards up to 14 days before they reach Singapore to make their entry faster and easier.

Instead of filling out paper arrival cards, they can fill the e-form and just show their passports at the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority's (ICA's) system for clearance.

Known as "SG Arrival Card" e-service, it has been extended to visitors travelling via certain airlines, coaches and ferries listed below:

Selected transport carriers

Airlines: AirAsia, Jetstar Asia, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines

Coach: Transtar Travel

Ferries: BatamFast Ferries, Bintan Resort Ferries, Horizon Fast Ferry and Majestic Fast Ferry

The SG Arrival Card e-service is available on both the ICA's website and as a mobile app, whereby users simply scan their passport biodata pages, instead of manually keying in the information.

Singapore ICA is planning to make e-service available to all visitors by 2021 and do away with paper-based immigration clearance forms.