The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) is introducing the new Long Term Pass (LTP) card - for all foreigners residing in Singapore on a long term Visit Pass, Student's Pass, Employment Pass and Dependant's Pass.
The card seeks to replace the Visit Pass endorsement in the passports of all long-term stayers.
All card holders will be required to produce their LTP card during immigration clearance when leaving or entering Singapore. If they decide to ever leave the country for good, they will have to surrender their LTP cards.
The cards are similar in look and feel to the NRIC cards held by citizens and permanent residents of Singapore, but are green in colour (see sample below). They are also equipped with similar security features.
For example, the particulars of the card holder will be engraved using laser technology, and will also employ the use of multiple laser images - which have been found to be effective anti-forgery measures.
Soft launching today, the first batch of LTP cards will be distributed to successful long term Visit Pass applicants who had previously applied online for $40 per issurance. If the applicant comes from a visa-required country, a visa processing fee of $30 per issue may also be required.
These successful applicants include:
- Foreign spouses, children or parents of Singapore Citizens renewing their long term Visit Pass;
- Mothers who accompany their school going children, renewing their long term Visit Pass; and
- Foreigners seeking long-term stay to look for employment in Singapore (for Employment Pass Eligibility Certificate holders only)
This launch will be expected to take place over a month.
In subsequent phases, the new LTP cards will be issued to all other groups of long term pass holders. People who apply in the subsequent phases will be expected to pay $60 per issurance. Apart from visa fees, an additional processing fee of $30 will also be required if the applicant is seeking a long term Visit Pass.
Upon approval of the application, an email notification will be sent to the applicant, detailing collection procedures and the alloted collection time and date. If the applicants are unable to make the alloted timing, they can simply log in to the ICA website to change their appointment.
Applicants who apply online will be able to collect their cards on the same day after inputting his data, and only one trip down to the ICA building will be necessary. For those who choose to apply for their LTP cards over the counter, they might have to make additional trips down before collection, depending on the volume of applicants that day.
Should the LTP card be misplaced, the holder should immediately make a police report and report to ICA within seven days for a replacement card.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (courtesy of ICA)
Q1: Would a LTP card holder be required to carry the card with him at all times?
A1: Whilst in Singapore, although the law does not provide for the card holders to be carrying the card at all times, it must be furnished for inspection by an immigration/enforcement officer within reasonable time when requested. On the other hand, the card holder would be required to produce his LTP card during immigration clearance when he is leaving or entering Singapore.
Q2: How do I verify the authenticity of the card?
A2: You should inspect the physical card to make sure that the physical security features are in place. However, one should not stop at visual inspection of the LTP card only. Anyone who wishes to verify the authenticity of the LTP card should make use of VERIFI, an online system that has been in placed since Year 2000, to check if a LTP card presented is still valid or invalid for use.
Q3: How do I take care of the card?
A3: No special care of the card is needed, as it is made of the durable and resilient polycarbonate material. It would be able to last for the entire duration of the immigration pass granted, as long as it is not subjected to an extreme environment/handling.
Q4: What is the procedure for a card replacement if my card expires?
A4: Long term Visit Pass holders seeking to renew their passes should submit their renewal application at least two weeks before their cards expire. The application can be made online via eVP system through the ICA website.
Q5: What should I do if I lose the LTP card?
A5: All LTP card holders should take good care of their cards and prevent lost through negligence. However, if it does happen, the LTP card holder should make a police report immediately and report to ICA within 7 days for a replacement card.
Q6: What should I do with the LTP card if I decide to leave Singapore for good?
A6: All LTP card holders are required to surrender their cards if and when they have decided to leave Singapore for good. The card holder may come to the Visitor Services Centre at Level 4 of the ICA Building to cancel his card. Upon cancellation of the card, he would be granted a short-term stay so that he can make preparations to leave Singapore. Alternatively, the card holder can also surrender the card to an ICA officer at the checkpoint.
Q7: Will I be able to use the automated lanes (i.e. enhanced Immigration Automated Clearance System) at the checkpoints?
A7: LTP card holders who have registered their fingerprints for the LTP cards and if their foreign-issued passports are compliant with the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organisation would be able to use the automated lanes at the checkpoints later this year. Details would be provided nearer to its implementation.
Q8: The LTP card does not have a machine-readable zone. Do I have to produce it when I travel? Can it be used to clear immigration?
A8: Yes, you are required to produce your LTP card during immigration clearance when leaving or entering Singapore. The machine-readable zone on the laminated green card has been replaced by the barcode on the LTP card, which encodes the essential information to facilitate immigration clearance.
Q9: Do I need to transfer the Visit Pass endorsement on my current passport when I change to a new passport?
A9: For long term Visit Pass holders who are issued with the new polycarbonate cards, they will no longer be given Visit Pass endorsements in their passports. Hence, there is no need to transfer the endorsement to their new passports. However, holders should continue to notify ICA if there is any change in their passport particulars within 14 days of after the change. For long term Visit Pass holders who are holding the laminated cards, they should continue to come to ICA to transfer their endorsements to their new passports.