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Singapore Layover

| January 4, 2014

Stuck on a Singapore layover at the Singapore Changi International Airport (SIN)? Singapore is a common layover for people en route to a variety of places in Asia and the South Pacific, and the airport is located roughly 11 miles from downtown which makes it an accessible destination for those stuck on long layovers. If you’re trying to determine whether you can leave the airport during your Singapore layover, click here for useful tips.

Singapore layover stopoverThe Changi airport in Singapore was ranked the second on the Top Ten Airports To Get Stuck In, and there’s a lot of wonderful things to do. The airport has a great deal of duty free and regular shopping including Shopping City, a large mall in the airport. You can browse the shop by terminal here.  There are also a number of places to grab a quick bite on the go or sit down for a formal dining experience. Check the restaurants and eateries by terminal here.

If you are looking for some rest and relaxation in the Changi Airport during your Singapore layover, there are a number of hair and beauty services, live acoustic music performances at the Music Barnature trails and gardens (including a cactus garden and an orchid garden), napping areas and the Rainforest Loungeshowers, fitness and spa services, and a swimming pool.

The airport hosts a number of passenger services including baby care rooms, convenience stores, hotel reservation counters, baggage services, banking, medical services, post office, prayer room and more. Here is the full list of Changi services (click into each for more information). The airport also has many free and paid options Internet services available, as well as Business Centers in Terminal 1, 2, and 3.

The airport offers free Singapore sight-seeing tours. If you have at least five hours to spare before your connecting flight, you can register for a free 2-hour sightseeing tour of Singapore.

If you arrive at night or are looking for a place to rest, the Changi airport has Transit Hotels (where you do not have to clear immigration to get to) in Terminals 1, 2, and 3. There are also many hotels near the airport, as well as a full list of Singapore hotels of varying price points.

If you’re looking to ditch your bags while you explore Singapore during your Changi layover, the airport has a Left Luggage counters in Terminals 1, 2, and 3. Click here for more info on pricing.

To travel into the city center, you can purchase an MRT train and transit passes from the airport terminal. It takes roughly 30 minutes by train to get into the city. Additional options include taxis, airport shuttle, bus, limo or car rental. Private transfers can also be arranged.

Layover Guide’s Suggestions Of Things To Do On A Singapore Layover:

Singapore Tours

There are many tours to choose from in Singapore and they offer a great way to see the city in a limited time frame. Tours include eco tours, safaris, historical and heritage tours, walking and biking tours, night tours, segway tours, cooking classes, wine and nightlife tours and so much more.

River Tour

the hop-on hop-off Singapore River Cruise takes you down the Singapore river with guided commentaries on the skyline and architecture. It’s a great way to get a quick feel for the city as you drift down the river, learning about the history of Singapore.

Singapore Zoo Night Safari

At Singapore’s one-of-a-kind zoo and national wildlife park, you can take part is the Night/Morning Safari and see over 100 exotic rare and endangered species. You can watch over a thousand animals during the night, or morning, depending on the tour, which can be booked with an optional buffet dinner.

Singapore’s Botanical Gardens

Singapore’s Botanical Gardens are the world’s largest botanical gardens, with over 600,000 plant specimens. The gardens exhibits the plants in their natural settings – including lawns and
orchids, as well as jungles.

Foot Massage

With over 200 foot and reflexology centers on the island, foot massages is a staple activity in Singapore. The practice massages the nerve endings, or reflex zones, of the foot to help regulate internal organs. You won’t stray far without coming across a place to relax your feet.

Night Shopping

Mustafa is a 24-hour six story shopping center that holds everything from diamonds to cars. The center promises some amazing deals, so if your layover is overnight and you’ve got the shopping bug, this is your place.

Have a suggestion for a Singapore layover? Leave a comment below!

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Category: Asia, layover, things to do

Comments (47)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    During our 8-hour layover in Singapore (arrived at 1AM and left at 9AM), we were able to take advantage of one of the three Ambassador Transit Hotels located within the airport proper. This means that after landing, you don’t need to clear Customs or leave the secure area of the airport. You go from your gate to the hotel and go to sleep. Rooms can be booked in a 6-hour block with a three 1-hour extensions so the max time you can stay is 9 hours.

    While the rooms are affordable (less than $100) they are not commissionable to travel agents. If you’re booking your trip through an agency, they may not tell you about the Transit Hotel or may try to book you into an airport or off-site hotel because they’ll make a little money that way. So you may need to either specifically request your travel person to book this or just book it yourself on-line (http://www.airport-hotel.com.sg/).

  2. Insulation Home says:

    Many thanks as i will visit singapore at 11 of august…

  3. Gokul says:

    Hi this is gokul, I am an Indian citizen working in Malaysia. I booked my flight ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Hyderabad in Tiger Airways Via Singapore. I have 2 hours Stop Over time in Singapore, so for this 2 hours do i need to apply prior visa?

    Please Clarify.


  4. Dm says:

    Hi We have 50 hrs of layover in Singapore (traveling with Singapore air)…not sure where to stay …any suggestion?

  5. flyer says:

    I have multiple destinations via Singapore Air. I am leaving Saudi Arabia and I have a stop over in Singapore for two nights then leave for Philippines. Will I have problem entering and leaving the immigration?

  6. Sue says:

    Next month I have nearly 8 hours layover in Changi Airport. Can anyone tell me if we take up the offer of a free 2 hour sightseeing tour as offered by the airport if we can use it as a hop on hop off service or do we have to stick with the bus all the way?

  7. Fionn says:

    I (like Sue) have a 9hr layover and would like to know the same as Sue regarding the Bus.
    Also the price for the train that gets into the city within 30mins.

    • sophia says:

      Hi Fionn,

      I don’t know whether my answer is too late or not.

      1. I have no idea about the detail of the FREE TOUR. Thus I don;t know whether they will allow you to depart from the tour or not.

      2. You can use “Ez-Link” to get into the train in Singapore. or else, you can get from the ticketing machine. The price is depending on where is your destination. For one way, about $2-3 (Refundable $1).

      If you are into the city via train to cityhall, then you can take the hop an hop bus from there onward. It will cost you $27 Adult, $19 children.

      However, I can get you a cheaper price at $19 per adult and $14 per child should you need the ticket. You can check our website at: http://wisataseru.com/2012/10/dari-tiket-universal-studio-singapore-uss-garden-bay-dan-masih-banyak-lagi/

  8. kosh says:

    I have a 18hr 50min layover, i want to go out and see singapore.
    Do i need a visa for that if I hold a Indian Passport ?

    • Ram says:

      Hi Kosh,
      I have the same situation as yours. Did you get a visa?

      • Shruthi says:

        I am an Indian Citizen with a US Green Card (PR). I will be transiting for about 12 hours, so i need to apply for a visa before i leave? Please advise on what you encountered

        • George says:

          I am also travelling through Singapore airport and have approx 7 hours of Layover time. Kindly share if any visa is required for the Airport’s own free 2 hour city tour.

  9. Shane says:

    One of the places I would recommend for a stopover would be at Escape Hunt Singapore along Orchard Road. A fun activity where we got to play detectives like Sherlock Holmes! It would be better to check out their website for more details: http://www.escapehunt.com

    Interesting fun and bonding activity! Fastest one hour of my life 😀

  10. Sam says:

    I want to book my ticket with two different airlines.Jakarta to Singapore then Singapore to New Delhi with a layover of 5 hrs.I will be carrying only a handbag.I want to know if I need transit visa. I will not be leaving the airport.I will be holding ticket for my next flight not the boarding pass Do i need to go through the immigration?

    • Wheng says:


      I have 5-1/2 hours lay over in Singapore (Dubai-SG-Thailand), i can leave the airport? Please do let me know asap please, my flight will be on 14th of this month.


  11. Sooraj says:


    I’m traveling from New Zealand to India and I have about 2 hours layover in Singapore. Do I need a transit visa? I’m on an Indian passport.


  12. Raghunandan says:

    i am travelling from manila to singapor and reached to terminal 1 @ 00:30 hrs next flight time is @ 10:30 hrs. please suggest what shall i do on airport.

    please suggest.

  13. Maxi says:

    I have a 12 hrs layover after travelling 11 hrs. I need a place to rest and sleep desparately (as I am a bad traveller) on 27th dec. All the transit hotels are fully booked. Crown plaza charges a horrendous fee of $280 a night n I cannot afford that. Can anyone suggest where I can rest and sleep before my next flight.I am a 57 female travelling alone.

  14. Sasha says:


    I will have a 6 hour layover in Singapore while on the way to Thailand. Do you think this is enough time to take the 30 minute bus into the city and maybe visit a nice bar and come back in time for flight?


  15. Sam says:

    Hi I am flying with tiger air with my connecting flight in Singapore have a huge layover of 10hrs+. I have a luggage transfer but I would like to go see Singapore in that time then come back to catch my connecting flight. Can I go into Singaporewithoue collecting my luggage if it’s already checked thru. Holder of a NZ passport.

  16. Cheryl says:

    I would like to fly from Johannesburg SA to Singapore and the flight I have chosen has a 24 hr 40 min layover. Is it possible to check my luggage straight through and to leave the airport in Singapore. I am a South African and have visited Singapore with my husband before. I will be travelling with him and my two young adult children.

  17. siddhesh says:

    Hi, iam an Indian citizen m traveling to Australia by Singapore airlines i hav a layover of 16 hrs in Singapore so can i go out of the airport to expore the city?
    Or are there any travel packs that are been set by the airport for there travellers?

    • R SATHISH says:

      I am Indian citizen I am traveling port Moresby to India I have a layover 15 hrs in Singapore So I go out of the airport to explore the city

  18. IzwanDavid says:

    Hi.. I will be in Singapore for 12-hrs layover before my flight to Frankfurt. I am traveling alone, I don’t know where should I go to kill time? Would it be worth it to spend my time in the city or just staying at the Airport.

  19. Jeanettr says:

    Hi, i only have 50mins connecting time from singapore to christchurch. Do i need to fill up a passenger card and or see the immigration? I must be in a hurry to transfer from one terminal to t3… Im travelling alone i wud appreciate much ur reply.tia

  20. Rk says:

    I have an indian passport and i work in US. I am traveling to India via Singapore and i have a layover of 18hrs in Singapore. Do i need a VISA to step out of airport?. And can i book any of the Singapore Stopover package and will they take me around the city without a VISA.

  21. Jen says:

    I am a Philippine passport holder and we are planning to have an 18 hour layover to Singapore. Suppose we arrive early morning in Changi airport, is the time sufficient to visit Legoland Malaysia?Kindly tell me your thoughts. thanks

  22. Calex says:

    I have a stop over in Singapore in April. Arrive 7am and Depart 8pm the next day. As I am travelling with 4 children, is it possible to leave most of our suitcases with the left luggage at the airport so we are not hauling them around? Do I have to prebook this?
    Also planning on staying at Sentosa, do the hotels generally have airport transfer buses or do we have to make our own way to them. And if we arrive at 10am and can’t check in till 3pm does anyone know if we can use the pool facilities until then?

  23. Calex says:

    I have a stop over in Singapore in April. Arrive 7am and Depart 8pm the next day. As I am travelling with 4 children, is it possible to leave most of our suitcases with the left luggage at the airport so we are not hauling them around? Do I have to prebook this?
    Also planning on staying at Sentosa, do the hotels generally have airport transfer buses or do we have to make our own way to them. And if we arrive at 10am and can’t check in till 3pm does anyone know if we can use the pool facilities until then?

  24. Roseline says:

    I am an Indian Citizen, residing in France. I have a four hour stay in Changi Terminal 1 for 5 hours. Do I need a Visa for Singapore?
    Await your response

  25. lalitha modani says:

    i am travelling to bali(indonesia) from hyderabad (india)by sigapore airlines on 29 th april 2016 and return on 7 th may 2016 by same airline ,there is a change of flight of same airline at singapore both ways there is a lay over of 4 hours at the airport . do i require a transit visa for change over of flight ,Please reply at terminal 2 and return terminal 1

  26. prashanth R Y says:

    I am an Indian citizen with a 12 hour layover in Singapore. Do i need to apply for a visa even if I do not intend to leave the terminal??

  27. prashanth says:

    I am an Indian Citizen and I have a 12 hour stay in Changi airport. Do I need a Visa for Singapore even if I do not leave the terminal?
    Await your response

  28. prashanth says:

    I am an Indian Citizen and have a 12 hour stay in Changi airport. Do I need a Visa for Singapore thpugh i plan on not leaving the terminal?
    Await your response

  29. Dan says:

    Later this year I will be flying Singapore Airlines from Los Angeles to Manila via Singapore. Will my luggage be checked thru to Manila? Or will I have to collect my luggage and recheck it to Manila?

    • Rob says:

      If it is a connecting flight then the answer to your question is no. If it is not then you have to recheck your bag at singapore airport.

      • AJ says:

        Hi! I hadConnecting flight too from Australia-Singapore-Philippines.. i have 12hrs before my flight going to Philippines and am planning to have a tour in SG before my flight to Philippines, my question is do i have to get my luggage if i go out to The Airport of SG even if am going to check it in from Australia all the way to my final destination?

  30. Marichu Clavecilla says:

    Hi i wil be travelling to Manila from Dubai and have a layover at SG airport for 11 hours, can I go outside the airport for sight seeing, like riding the train and going to shopping malls? Please answer

  31. Lily says:

    HI I’m a mum with 4 kids with an 8 hour layover at Changi. Arrive after midnight so no point doing a tour and can’t fit in a transit room. Where can we rest till the flight at 9am?

    • myles says:

      Hi. Same here. Arrive at 2200 so i heard no more free tours going after 2200. I wonder if shops are open 24 grs for shopping at the airport????

  32. Adi says:


    I am an Indian Citizen, I have 2 hrs of hault/stay at singapore airport to catch flight to sydney,

    so do i need transit visa for this ?

    await for your response

  33. Pen says:

    Hi there,
    We have to check out of our hotel st 11am but our flight is not until 8pm. What are our options and can we use the transit hotel?