There might be lots of things people complain about in Singapore, like the heat, the crowds and the fact that practically everything is expensive as hell.
But one thing you sure can’t complain about is how easy it is to get out of the country, which the hordes of Singaporeans who take multiple overseas trips each year would know.
According to the 2016 Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index, Singapore was ranked 5th in travel freedom based on the sheer number of countries or territories we can visit visa-free. Now that’s one ranking that actually matters. Here are six great places or regions you should check out with your Singaporean passport.
We’re including Sri Lanka, one of the fastest rising travel destinations amongst Singaporeans, at the top of the list, not just because this South Asian gateway destination is filled with sprawling tea plantations, lush tropical rainforests and swathes of beaches. It’s also worthy of mention because only three nationalities get in Visa-free, and we’re one of them (along with nationals of the Maldives and Seychelles).
Visa-free period: 30 days, extendable up to 150 days
EU Schengen area
If you’re a uni student, you’re probably already sick of the photos posted by your classmates on exchange as they gallivant across Europe. Well, guess what? The entire Schengen area in Europe, which includes 26 nations including France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Switzerland, Spain and Sweden, is open to Singaporeans without a visa.
Sure, you and every other Singaporean might spend your life savings on Chanel and Prada during your Eurotrip, but hey at least the visa’s free.
Visa-free period: 90 days within 180 days
Here in Singapore, we like to think we’re pretty familiar with China. But how much do we really know about that massive country up north? It’s so much more than just Shanghai dumplings, imitation goods and the Great Wall. We’re just one of 9 nationalities who can enter visa-free, and there are numerous flights on budget airlines to cities like Lijiang, Xi’an and Hangzhou.
Visa-free period: 15 days
For most Singaporeans, South America is as exotic and as unexplored as it gets, especially considering you might be stuck on the plane and in transit for up to 30 hours. If you’re a diehard fan of Lionel Messi, fancy yourself dancing the Tango, or just like to sink your teeth into steaks that are a cut above Aston’s, you’ll be pleased to know Singaporeans get to visit Argentina visa-free.
Visa-free period: 90 days
‘Murica is notoriously strict about their immigration policy—gotta keep those ne’er-do-wells out of the country, you know? But the good news for Singaporeans whose main aim is to shop at the Woodbury Common Premium Outlets and binge eat freedom fries is that Singapore is one of 38 countries selected for the Visa Waiver Programme, which means we can visit the united States without acquiring a US visa or paying any visa-related fees.
There was a rumour going around some time ago about having to replace your passport if you didn’t have one of those new biometric ones—it’s false.
Visa-free period: 90 days including time spent in Canada, Mexico, Bermuda or the islands in the Caribbean
Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam
Anyone who’s spent any amount of time in popular backpacker cities in Southeast Asia like Siem Reap or Hanoi has seen the hordes of mostly European backpackers sweating it out under the hot sun. Well, unlike most of these backpackers, you’re not going to have to fork out the money for a visa.
We’re one of only 7 countries who can enter Cambodia, one of 23 who can enter Vietnam, and one of 15 who can enter Laos visa-free.
Visa-free period: 30 days per country
Photo credits: POTIER Jean-Louis, Miloslav Petrasko, Wenjie Qiao, Pablo Gonzalez, Christian Arballo, telmo32
Have you visited any of the above places? Leave your recommendations in the comments!