Guiding tours in Singapore
These information pages can help you get started in learning about some of the laws and registration requirements that may apply to your Trips or Experiences on Airbnb. These pages include summaries of some of the rules that may apply to different sorts of activities, and contain links to government resources that you may find helpful.*
Please understand that these information pages are not comprehensive, and are not legal advice. If you are unsure about how local laws or this information may apply to you or your Trip or Experience, we encourage you to check with your city or an attorney.
Please note that we don’t update this information in real time, so you should confirm that the law has not changed recently.
What is a Tourist Guide? When am I likely to be considered a Tourist Guide?
Tour guiding is a licensed profession in Singapore. Under the Singapore Tourism Board Act (“STBA”), a Tourist Guide is as an individual who personally provides any guiding services to a tourist for remuneration. "Guiding services" refer to the provision of any direction, information, description or explanation to the tourist while accompanying the tourist in or to a place or point of interest in Singapore. As the STBA does not define what constitutes accompanying or a place/point of interest, we encourage you to check with the Singapore Tourism Board (“STB”) or speak to your lawyer to make sure you are following the laws.
Here are some examples of when you are likely to be considered to be acting as Tourist Guide:
- I bring a guest around Singapore to visit the various museums and galleries while providing commentary about the places along the way.
- The guest signs up for a paid Experience, I meet him in Little India and bring him to various temples and eating places while providing information and commentary about the place.
- I take a paying guest on a hike through the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve during which I provide detailed explanation of the flora and fauna there.
If I am considered to be a Tourist Guide, do I need to get a licence?
Yes. In order to obtain a licence, you will have to pass a 6-month tourism course and 2 tourist guide licensing examinations. For more information on the requirements and procedure for securing a licence, please refer to the STB Tourist Guide Licensing webpage.
Note that you may attract criminal liability in the form of financial penalty for failing to obtain a Tourist Guide licence. The STB carries out active enforcement against unlicensed tourist guides, especially in areas around popular tourist attractions.
Is there anything else I should think about?
Yes. There are restrictions on foreigners who are work pass holders or who have entered Singapore on social visit passes to freelance by hosting Trips or Experiences on Airbnb. If this applies to you, you are responsible to check with the city and an attorney.
In addition, if your experience will involve other activities (for example, transportation or serving or providing alcohol or food), please take a look at our other information sections to determine if any other rules might apply to your activity.
* Airbnb is not responsible for the reliability or correctness of the information contained in any links to third party sites (including any links to legislation and regulations).