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I went to the Resorts World Sentosa Casino in Singapore and my physical passport was required for me to be granted entry (photos of passports are not accepted). I'm guessing most/all other casinos in Singapore would also require me to present my physical passport.

What other kinds of places in Singapore require visitors to present their physical passport, aside from the entry/departure ports (SIN airport/ports/etc.), possible police interactions and SIM card shops? Assume that the visitor does not have some form of Singaporean ID, but they have US ID card and a French passport.

The motivation of this question is that I prefer to step outside without my physical passport if possible, which means I'd like to know ahead of time which types of places may require a passport. E.g., for the casino, I didn't expect that they'd ask for a passport, because in some countries casinos don't ask for passports.

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    If a new user had posted this exact same question, I would mark it as spam because it reads like a thinly disguised advertisement. However, I've voted to close because it is a "list of" question. Dec 12, 2023 at 20:36
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    @GregHewgill Let's just focus on the main types of places in Singapore. I'd be surprised if more than 5 types of places ask for a physical passport. I don't recall the last time I was asked for it, aside from the immigration, the airport or when getting a new passport, and buying SIM cards. Dec 12, 2023 at 20:40
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    “Most/all other types of casinos”… as far as I remember there are only two casinos in Singapore, the one in Sentosa and the other one in Marina Bay Sands.
    – jcaron
    Dec 12, 2023 at 22:11

2 Answers 2

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The casinos require ID because local residents are required to pay a levy of S$150 to enter, and a foreign passport not tied to a Singapore resident permit exempts you from this. There are only two in Singapore, at Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa, and the requirement applies only to the actual gambling floors, all other facilities (shops, restaurants, rides etc) are open to all.

You of course need to present a passport to enter Singapore, and all accommodations require a passport or Singaporean ID to check in. You also need to present a passport for any type of medical services (doctors, hospitals) as well as spas and massage parlours. Places serving alcohol can also require ID if they suspect you are under 18, although enforcement of this is surprisingly loose.

And that's pretty much it for places that require a passport. You will, however, also need it for signing up for various contracts, such as buying a prepaid SIM card or opening a bank account.

Finally, the only officially accepted ID for non-resident visitors is a passport, unlike some countries driver's licenses or national ID cards are not accepted.

FWIW, Singapore used to be much more "ID-happy", but PDPC guidance from 2019 explicitly prohibits demanding/collecting IDs unless there is a legal requirement to do so. See summary (PDF) and full guidelines (PDF), although neither provides an exhaustive list.

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    Does this mean you could technically visit a casino without an ID if you just pay S$150?
    – JonathanReez
    Dec 12, 2023 at 23:55
  • Thanks! "the only accepted ID for non-resident visitors is a passport" does that mean nightclubs would also ask for a physical passport to prove the age (instead of some non-Singaporean IDs)? Dec 12, 2023 at 23:55
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    @FranckDernoncourt Legal minimum age for serving alcohol is 18 and yes, they can ask ID for that, although in my experience Singapore is surprisingly lax on this. Dec 13, 2023 at 2:13
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    @JonathanReez No, you will not be allowed in without ID, since this is also used to enforce eg. gambling bans (voluntary or otherwise). Dec 13, 2023 at 2:14
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I've been in office buildings that required visitors to leave their ID with security in exchange for a badge. I've always gotten away with it, so far, by saying I left my passport at the hotel (true), and called the company I was visiting to come down and sort it out.

They were usually surprised I wasn't carrying ID with me (well I had my HK ID on me but that's none of their business), and even more surprised when I told them that there's no way I would leave my passport with a random Uncle wearing a bad suit and "Security" badge. The Singapore kiasi spirit at its best.

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    Leaving ID with security used to be common practice but is explicitly forbidden by the PDPC since 2019. See section 4 and example 5.10: pdpc.gov.sg/-/media/Files/PDPC/PDF-Files/Advisory-Guidelines/… They can still ask to see ID though. Dec 13, 2023 at 3:57
  • Sure. They can ask... 😬
    – dda
    Dec 13, 2023 at 4:05
  • Coincidentally, I was asked for ID in an office building in Singapore in 2019... I guess they were just getting the message.
    – dda
    Dec 13, 2023 at 4:15
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    The new rules kicked in from Nov 2019, so you were likely there just before that. Dec 13, 2023 at 6:40

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