Employment pass Vs Entrepass. Which one to apply for in Singapore?

10 minute read

Are you considering moving to Singapore for work and wondering which pass type is the right one for you? Look no further! In this blog post, we will dive into the differences between two popular options: The Employment Pass and Entrepass. Both passes have their own unique advantages and requirements, so it’s important to understand which one fits your specific situation best. So let’s get started on figuring out which pass is the perfect fit for your career aspirations in Singapore!


Employment Pass

The Employment Pass is a type of work pass that allows foreigners to work in Singapore. It is issued by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and is targeted at foreign professionals, managers, executives and specialists who have relevant qualifications and experience.

To be eligible for an Employment Pass, you must meet the following requirements: You should have a job offer from a Singapore-based company; your salary should be at least SGD 5,000 per month for fresh graduates and SGD 10,500 if you are in the mid- forties. You should possess good educational qualifications or professional skills that match your job; and finally, your potential employer must apply for this pass on behalf of you.

If approved, the Employment Pass typically allows holders to stay in Singapore for up to two years initially. The pass can also be renewed (up to 3 years) as long as the holder remains employed with their current employer.
If you’re looking for a longer-term career opportunity in Singapore with higher paying jobs then an employment pass might just be what fits your criteria best!


The Entrepass is a work pass designed for foreign entrepreneurs who want to establish their business which is venture-backed and possesses innovative technologies in Singapore. This pass allows them to set up and operate their own company, as well as manage it on a day-to-day basis.

To be eligible for the Entrepass, applicants must fulfill certain requirements such as having innovative ideas with a scalable business model, obtaining funding from accredited investors or government agencies, and possessing relevant experience in managing a startup.

One of the benefits of the Entrepass is that it allows foreigners to start their own businesses without a need to pay themselves a high salary as compared to an Employment Pass. It also allows foreigners to research and explore business opportunities for 1 year before starting incorporating a business in Singapore. However, this pass requires more documentation compared to other types of work passes and has stricter renewal criteria.

Another thing to consider when applying for an Entrepass is that processing times can take longer than other work visas due to additional verification processes required by authorities. EntrePass applications are jointly assessed by the Ministry of Manpower and Enterprise Singapore.

If you’re an entrepreneur looking to start your own innovative business in Singapore and you do not want to pay yourself a high salary so that there could be more funds to be used for your business in the start-up phase, the Entrepass might just be what you need!

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The difference between the two passes

When it comes to working in Singapore, there are two primary types of work passes that foreigners can choose from: the Employment Pass and the Entrepass. While both allow individuals to legally work in Singapore, they differ significantly in terms of eligibility criteria and restrictions.

The Employment Pass is typically for foreign professionals who have a job offer from a Singaporean employer and earn at least $,5,000 per month and the qualifying salary increases with age up to $10,500 for candidates in their mid-forties. This pass is designed for individuals with specialized skills or extensive experience in their field. The validity period ranges from one to three years.

On the other hand, an Entrepass is meant for those who wish to start their own business venture or join an existing startup as a shareholder or director. To be eligible for this pass, applicants must demonstrate that their proposed business idea has innovative potential or will contribute significantly to the local economy. The validity period initially lasts for one year but can be renewed up to 2 years each time subsequently.

Deciding which pass type you should apply for depends on your individual circumstances such as whether you want pay yourself a lower salary so that there is more funds to run your own business venture

Which one is better for you?

When it comes to deciding between an Employment Pass and an Entrepass, the choice should ultimately depend on your personal circumstances.

If you’re looking to work for a Singaporean company or be employed by one, then the Employment Pass might be the better option for you. This pass is granted based on your qualifications and job offer, with higher salaries often resulting in easier approval.

On the other hand, if you plan on starting your own business (which is venture-backed or possesses innovative technology) and you would like to take on a lower or no salary in the initial phase in Singapore, then the Entrepass might be more suitable. It’s designed specifically for entrepreneurs who wish to establish their business in Singapore. However, this pass requires more documentation and proof of financial backing compared to an Employment Pass.

Another factor to consider is whether you have any prior experience running a business or working in Singapore. If so, this may make it easier for you to obtain either pass depending on your specific situation.

Both passes have their pros and cons depending on what type of work or venture you plan on pursuing in Singapore. Do thorough research before making a decision that best fits your unique situation.

How to apply for an Employment Pass/Entrepass

To apply for an Employment Pass or Entrepass in Singapore, you must meet the eligibility criteria set by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). For both passes, applicants must have a job offer from a registered company in Singapore.

For Employment Pass applications, the employer must submit an application on behalf of the applicant. The following documents are required: educational certificates, passport details, and resume/CV. In addition to these basic requirements, MOM may request additional documentation depending on your qualifications and work experience, and also proof that the company has the financial capability.

Entrepreneurial individuals who want to start their own business in Singapore can apply for either an Employment Pass or Entrepass . To be eligible for an EntrePass, , candidates will need to provide a detailed business plan outlining objectives and strategies and supporting documents to prove that the candidate and business meet the innovative criteria as an entrepreneur, innovator or investor Applicants will also need to provide proof of entrepreneurial experience such as previous successful businesses or relevant professional certifications.

Both types of applications can take several weeks to process so it’s important to make sure all documents are accurate and complete before submitting your application.


Both the Employment Pass and EntrePass offer their own unique benefits and are suitable for different types of individuals. The Employment Pass is ideal for foreign professionals who have a job offer from a Singapore-based company; or entrepreneurs who have funds to pay themselves a high salary to meet the EP qualifying salary, while the EntrePass is more suited to entrepreneurs looking to start or run a venture-backed or innovative business, and would prefer to take a no pay/lower pay in the start-up phase .

It’s important to carefully consider your specific circumstances before deciding which pass to apply for. Make sure you meet all the eligibility requirements and prepare all necessary documents before submitting your application.

Whichever pass you choose, Singapore offers great opportunities for those looking to work or start a business in the country. With its favourable tax policies, strong economy and welcoming environment, it’s no surprise that many people see Singapore as an attractive destination for career advancement or entrepreneurship.

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