Entry and Exit
Singaporeans can visit the UK without a visa. Passport must be valid for the duration of your stay (We recommend that travellers should have at least six months passport validity). If you're planning to visit the UK for more than six months, or for any purpose other than tourism, please refer to the UK Visas and Immigration website at https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration to ensure you apply for the appropriate visa.
As visa requirements often change at short notice, we advise you to contact your travel agency, or the British High Commission in Singapore for up-to-date information.
The UK is not part of the Schengen area, and a passport is required to travel between the UK and other European countries, including Ireland.
From 20 May 19, Singaporeans are eligible to use eGates at 15 air and rail ports in the UK for quicker automated immigration clearance into the UK. However, not everyone should use the eGates. In this regard, please check the UK Visas and Immigration website at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coming-to-the-uk/faster-travel-through-the-uk-border.
UK airports administer extensive security screening for passengers. If you are flying to the UK, allow extra time for extended screenings and luggage checks at your airport of departure. Check the UK Visas and Immigration website at https://www.gov.uk/browse/visas-immigration/arriving-in-the-uk for further information on these measures and on current hand luggage restrictions at UK airports.
You must declare to Customs:
anything over your duty-free allowance
banned or restricted goods in the UK, e.g. meat and dairy products from most non-EU countries
goods that you plan to sell
more than €10,000 (or its equivalent) in cash, if you’re coming from outside the EU
Safety and Security
The UK faces a serious and challenging threat from terrorism, international groups, domestic extremists and Northern Ireland-related groups.
On 8 February 2021, the UK threat level for international terrorism was reduced from ‘Severe’ to ‘Substantial’ (level three on a five point scale, with level five being the most likely), which means an attack is still likely. The threat to Northern Ireland from Northern Ireland-Related Terrorism remains at ‘Severe’.
Threat levels do not have an expiry date. They can change at any time as different information becomes available to security agents. For more information on the current threat level, please visit the Home Office website at www.gov.uk/terrorism-national-emergency or the Security Service website at www.mi5.gov.uk/threat-levels.
Members of the public should always remain alert to the danger of terrorism and report any suspicious activities to the police on 999 or the anti-terrorist hotline: 0800 789 321. Members of the public should:
- remain alert to the danger of terrorism
- look out for suspicious behaviour or unattended bags on public transport and in other public places
- look out for other signs of possible terrorist activity
- report suspicious behaviour and unattended bags to the police
- take heed of any official warnings
- follow the advice of local authorities
The Police Service, the British Transport Police and many partners in the UK and abroad work very hard to keep the public safe from threats. Attacks are infrequent but the simple ‘Run Hide Tell’ guidance offered by the National Police Chiefs’ Council is useful and relevant when you encounter a firearms and weapons attack, the video guidance for which can be found at www.youtube.com/watch?v=QUCW_mk35Xc
The phone number for police/fire/ambulance emergency services is 999 in the United Kingdom. You should also use this number to report security threats or suspicious packages.
Travellers and residents encounter petty crime, such as pickpocketing and mobile phone theft, across the UK, especially in crowded tourist locations.
- Be cautious and aware of your surroundings.
- Be vigilant, as pickpocketing, mugging and “snatch and grab” theft of mobile phones, watches and jewellery can occur.
- Do not leave bags unattended in restaurants, pubs, hotel lobbies, and parked cars.
- Be alert to other criminal schemes, such as impostors posing as undercover police officers and “fining” tourists for bogus minor offences. A legitimate London Metropolitan Police Services officer will never demand an immediate cash payment.
- Use only licensed Black Cabs or pre-ordered car services (minicabs). Unlicensed taxis or private cars posing as taxis may offer low fares, but in some instances, travellers have been robbed or sexually assaulted while using these cars. The Safer Travel at Night partnership among the Metropolitan Police, Transport for London, and the Mayor of London maintains a website with additional information on cabs and car services at www.tfl.gov.uk/modes/taxis-and-minicabs
- Avoid using ATMs that look temporary in structure or location or are located in isolated areas – they may not be legitimate. Use ATMs located inside a bank branch.
- Scams: Financial crimes conducted over the internet have increased dramatically in the United Kingdom as scammers attempt to convince you to send them money. These fraudulent schemes can include:
- Online dating/social networking services
- Inheritance notices
- Work permits/job offers
- Bank overpayments
- Schemes that make it appear you are helping a loved one or a friend in trouble
General Travel Advice
Overseas Travel – Be Informed & Be Safe [13 November 2019]
In view of the upcoming school holidays, Singaporeans planning overseas travel are reminded to take the necessary precautions, including being prepared to deal with accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. Singaporeans are also reminded to be familiar with your destination’s local laws and customs restrictions, including immigration procedures and entry requirements.
Singaporeans travelling to and from Malaysia, in particular via the land checkpoints, are reminded to ensure that your passport is presented to a Malaysian immigration officer and stamped correctly before leaving the Malaysian immigration booth. Failure to do so is an immigration offence in Malaysia and the penalties can be severe, including detention, a fine, and a ban from future entry into the country.
In 2019, demonstrations have occurred in several major cities across the world. Such demonstrations can sometimes escalate into violence. It is important for Singaporeans to keep abreast of local news, avoid any protests or demonstrations and heed the advice of the local authorities.
When participating in outdoor leisure activities overseas, Singaporeans should be mindful that certain sporting activities, especially in open seas, may carry risks. Besides ensuring that one has the physical competencies and appropriate condition to undertake the activity, every effort should be made to ascertain if the trip organiser or guide is reliable and competent, and that appropriate safety and contingency plans are in place. When in doubt, Singaporeans should consult the relevant professional bodies or sporting associations for specific advice.
For those planning to travel, here are some tips:
· Familiarise yourself with our network of overseas missions.
· Purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.
· Equip yourself with research about your destination’s entry requirements, current situation, local laws and customs.
· eRegister with us on our website (https://www.mfa.gov.sg) so that we may reach out to you during an emergency.
· Always take care of your personal safety, remain vigilant and monitor local weather news, advisories, and security developments.
· Exercise caution around large gatherings and avoid locations known for demonstrations or disturbances.
· Be prepared for possible delays and last-minute changes in travel plans especially during unforeseen events such as natural disasters, social unrests or terror attacks.
· Stay connected with your friends and family. Inform them of your whereabouts and provide them with your overseas contact details.
In the event that you require consular assistance, please contact the nearest Singapore Overseas Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.
Advisory: Email Scams [Updated: 12 May 2016]
There has been an increasing number of reports in recent years of individuals receiving scam emails purportedly sent from friends in distress overseas. These emails typically originate from an email address known to the receiver bearing claims of the sender getting into trouble overseas and urgently requesting financial assistance. The sender would also claim to have approached a Singapore Embassy/Consulate and the local Police for help to no avail.
MFA takes the safety of all Singaporeans very seriously. Singaporeans in distress approaching our Overseas Missions for assistance will be rendered with all necessary consular assistance. If you receive such emails from purported friends seeking funds transfers, we strongly advise you to call them first to verify the authenticity of the emails before responding to their request. It is also not advisable to give out any personal information such as NRIC/passport nos., address, telephone number, etc. Any form of reply, even one of non-interest, could result in more unsolicited emails. Members of the public who suspect that they have fallen prey to such scams should report the matter to the Police immediately. Should Singaporeans abroad require consular assistance, they can contact the nearest Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24-hr Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.