As a tourist, you are one of the most important assets to almost any country. According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization, tourism generates an estimated 3.2% of the world’s GDP. It is a key driver of jobs and economic growth and a major source of foreign exchange for many countries.
Well, Singapore is one of those countries. Singapore is a well-developed country with a lot at its disposal, including a highly-developed travel and tourism industry. Along with that incorporating a company in Singapore is very easy as well as lucrative. In this article, we will be looking at how to start your own travel agency in Singapore.
Why Should You Choose Singapore?
Singapore is a fantastic place to start a travel agency because it is a great hub for business and tourism. It is also one of the most visited countries in Asia and welcomes many tourists every year. It is a place that offers a lot of job opportunities, and the tourism industry of Singapore helped immensely with that.
So, you must be wondering why Singapore is known for fostering these opportunities for citizens and international workers from around the world. It is simply because the country is cosmopolitan and the government supports the tourism industry.
Singapore is a global business hub. There are also many events held in Singapore that are very well-known in the region. Furthermore, the country is diversified with different cultures and communities, which helps to foster a pleasant and valuable surrounding for visiting tourists.
Since the country is located next to many other developed nations, it offers a wealth of nearby destinations that tourists can easily hop to. And those who like to explore spiritual and alternative lifestyles can also travel from Singapore to the southern parts of Asia.
And if you are interested in travelling and learning about Eastern cultures, China, Japan, and Korea are all located conveniently around Singapore. Your travel agency in Singapore can facilitate these adventures across the region if you are keen to visit.
- Selling or organising travel services for a third party.
- Air ticket and hotel accommodation booking services.
- Advising about domestic destinations and schedules for transportation.
To offer the services mentioned above, you must have a travel agency license in Singapore because all the above services come under the travel agent act.
The next step is to decide on the type of license you need. “Niche License” requires about $50,000 capital with equal or greater net worth to obtain one successfully. However, it only allows you to sell or organise tours with conveyance inside the country, not inclusive of accommodation. “General License” needs $100,000 capital and equal net worth but allows you to provide all travel agent activities.
Apart from that, you need to fulfil the following conditions:
- Registration: You must first register the business with Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA).
- Capital investment – This includes all net worth and the amount of capital you pay up during the licensing process.
- Key executive – The KE will become the contact person who coordinates between the board and the travel agency. This individual should be assigned managerial as well as administrative tasks.
- Management and working staff – A group of skilled individuals should be responsible for each role inside the travel agency.
- Workplace – The applicant who is applying for the licensing should have a physical workplace.
You have to apply for your license online, and the initial application processing will take 1 to 2 weeks. Prior to the approval of the travel agency license, the IPA letter ( In-Principal Approval ) will be given to you first to let you know of the requirements for holding a license.
Validity And Renewal Of The License
The license you acquire is valid for 2 years and can only be extended for one year each time after that. Make sure to apply for this renewal within the validity period of your travel agency license. However, if you cannot renew your license before it expires, you may have to go through the same process you went through during your first registration. No additional fees will be charged for that.
Revocation And Suspension Of The License
If your travel agency is guilty of malpractices or fraudulent activities or has received too many complaints, it will be suspended for 6 months. For instance, errors and faults in management or leadership can result in such outcomes. Depending on the severity of the offences and the errors, revocation can even take place.
Starting a travel agency in Singapore may be challenging compared to other countries. However, once you have successfully established your business, the profits it can produce are immense.
All these procedures are in place to ensure tourists have a reliable, world-class travelling experience. If you are passionate about this area, starting your own travel agency in Singapore is worth it.
If you are looking for a reliable corporate service provider to manage the whole incorporation process for you, contact HeySara today. We will ensure the whole process is seamless and completed in no time. You can also take advantage of the other services we offer, like company secretary, accounting and taxation, to ensure you always stay compliant while you are busy running and growing your business.