Cheapest pre-departure COVID-19 ART and PCR tests in Singapore

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The cheapest pre-departure COVID-19 ART or PCR tests in Singapore, plus express, saliva, home and tele-supervised swabbing options.

If you’re travelling overseas in the near future, you may be required to take a pre-departure COVID-19 test (PDT).

The good news is that whether you’re looking at an ART or PCR, testing prices in Singapore have been falling every month. The price of a PCR test now starts from S$50, while a virtually-supervised ART can be done at S$9. 

Summary: Cheapest Pre-Departure Tests
(Last updated: 8-Jul-22)

In this post, we’ll look at your options including at-home swabbing, express tests, saliva tests, and more.

⚕️ Cheapest Pre-Departure COVID-19 Tests

Which countries require a PDT?

🌎 COVID-19 Travel Restrictions by Country
The following resources summarise COVID-19 travel restrictions by country, including who can enter, vaccination and testing requirements.
TIMATICSherpa

Here’s a summary of the PDT requirements for selected destinations popular among Singapore travellers. 

⚕️ PDT for Singapore Residents
 Vax.Unvax. Child Under 12^
🇦🇺 AustraliaN/AN/A
🇰🇭 CambodiaN/AN/A
🇨🇦 CanadaN/AN/A
🇩🇰 DenmarkN/AN/A
🇫🇯 FijiN/AN/A
🇫🇮 Finland N/AN/A
🇫🇷 FranceN/AN/A
🇩🇪 GermanyN/AN/A
🇬🇷 GreeceN/AN/A
🇭🇰 Hong KongPCR1PCR1
🇮🇳 IndiaN/APCR1b
(under 5 exempt)
🇮🇩 IndonesiaN/AN/A
🇮🇱 IsraelN/AN/A
🇮🇹 ItalyN/AN/A
🇯🇵 JapanPCR2PCR2
(under 6 exempt)
🇲🇾 Malaysia N/AN/A
🇲🇻 MaldivesN/AN/A
🇳🇿 New ZealandN/AN/A
🇳🇱 NetherlandsN/AN/A
🇵🇭 PhilippinesART/PCR3
(boosted individuals exempt)
N/A
🇶🇦 QatarPCR4N/A
🇸🇦 Saudi ArabiaN/AN/A
🇿🇦 South AfricaN/AN/A
🇰🇷 South KoreaART/PCR5ART/PCR5
(under 6 exempt)
🇱🇰 Sri LankaN/AN/A
🇪🇸 SpainN/AN/A
🇸🇪 SwedenN/AN/A
🇨🇭 SwitzerlandN/AN/A
🇹🇭 ThailandN/AN/A
🇹🇷 TurkeyN/AN/A
🇦🇪 UAEN/AN/A
🇬🇧 United KingdomN/AN/A
🇺🇸 United StatesN/AN/A
🇻🇳 VietnamN/AN/A
^Accompanied by vaccinated parents
1. Within 48h of departure to Hong Kong
1b. Within 72h of departure to India
2. Within 72h of departure to Japan
3. Within 24h/48h (ART/PCR) of departure to Philippines
4. Within 48h of departure to Qatar

5. Within 1 day/2 days (ART/PCR) of departure to South Korea

If you intend to take a cruise on Resorts World Cruises or Royal Caribbean, you will need to take a supervised COVID-19 test within 1 day of departure (this can be an ART or PCR test). 

Testing Windows

Testing windows have been summarised in the table above, but pay particular attention to:

  • Whether a shorter time frame applies if you wish to do an ART instead of PCR
  • Whether the window is in relation to your time of departure or your time of arrival in the overseas country
  • Whether the window is described in days or hours- there is a difference!
    • Example: South Korea requires a pre-departure ART to be taken within 1 day of departure. If you’re flying at 11 p.m on Wednesday, for example, you can take your test anytime from 12 a.m on Tuesday onwards. This means you could have as much as 48 hours to do your test in some cases

Testing windows shouldn’t be that much of a concern for those taking ART, since the quick turnaround time allows you to do it the day before you fly. You could even do it at Changi Airport just before check-in, thanks to the Raffles Medical Clinic at Terminal 3. Alternatively, you could do it from the comfort of your home via a tele-medicine provider (see below for options).

How much does a PDT cost?

Travelers can do their test at any MOH approved clinic. For those with children aged 12 and below, do check beforehand whether the clinic is able to provide testing, because not all do.

Approved COVID-19 Test Providers
Click the link for “clinics approved to conduct PCR Pre-Departure Tests”. These clinics offer results in the HealthCerts.oa format, which is needed for notarisation.

Clinic ART/PCR Tests

Here’s an idea of how much you can expect to pay for an ART, PCR or PCR(S) (Serology- for travel to China) at selected clinics across Singapore.

Do note that while South Korea and the Philippines accept ART results, these must be administered in-clinic. Tele-supervised ARTs will not be valid for travel to these two countries.

⚕️In-Clinic COVID-19 ART/PCR Test*
ChainART↑ PCRPCR(S)
PDT Swab SGS$35S$50N/A
Fast PDT SwabS$28S$70
N/A
Lion HealthS$18S$72N/A
AcuMed Medical
S$25S$72S$117
SpeedimedS$25S$72N/A
The Testing ProS$20S$75N/A
TravelSwabS$28S$75N/A
ATA MedicalS$30S$76S$131
MinmedS$35S$77S$155
Advantage MedicalS$24S$78N/A
Swab StationS$38S$78S$148
Kingsway MedicalS$38S$78S$148
InteMedicalS$37S$80S$135
SGSTS$28S$88N/A
Kingston MedicalS$25S$90N/A
Parkway ShentonS$33S$90S$150
Swab N GoS$30S$95N/A
Healthway Medical
S$30S$95S$140
Doctor Anywhere ClinicS$32S$95S$155
Northeast MedicalS$21S$99S$152
Q&M MedicalS$30S$100S$130
SATA Comm Health
S$28S$107S$157
Fullerton HealthS$37S$107Enquire
Raffles MedicalS$27S$115Enquire
Fusion MedicalS$35S$118S$161
Paddington MedicalS$37S$120N/A
OneCare MedicalS$37S$123N/A
Heartland Health
S$30S$125S$160
Pinnacle Family ClinicS$48S$128S$214
*Prices are subject to change; call clinics for latest information.

The promised turnaround time for most clinics is 24-48 hours, though in my experience it’s much closer to 24 hours. 

Saliva PCR Tests

For those who find nasal swabs too invasive, saliva PCR testing was recently made available in Singapore.

Sample prices are shown below.

💦 In-Clinic Saliva PCR Test
Chain↑ Saliva PCR
Parkway ShentonS$90
Chang ClinicS$105
Paddington MedicalS$120
Thomson MedicalS$130
WhiteCoatS$138
Dedicare Medical
S$140
HealthspringsS$140
Gleneagles HospitalS$150
Parkway East HospitalS$150
GainhealthS$155
(at home)
Osler HealthS$168
IMCS$177

Saliva PCR testing is currently accepted for travel to:

  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan

For other countries, do contact the respective authorities for clarification.

Express PCR Tests

Express service is available with the following providers:

⏲️ Express PCR Testing
ProviderPriceLocationRemarks
Raffles MedicalS$185Clinic6 hours
Fast PDT Swab
S$188Clinic12 hours
S$228Clinic4-6 hours
PDT Swab SG
S$195Clinic12 hours
S$245Home
AcuMedS$198Clinic8 hours
SpeediMedS$198Clinic“Same day”
The Testing Pro
S$198Clinic5-7 hours
S$238Home
Gainhealth
S$209Clinic6-8 hours
S$209Home
TravelSwabS$228Clinic12 hours
Parkway ShentonS$238Home6 hours
BCH-ARTS$240Home6-8 hours
Swab N GoS$240Clinic6-8 hours
Healthway MedicalS$250Clinic6 hours
Affinity MedicalS$250Clinic6-8 hours
My-DocS$262Clinic6 hours
MinmedS$265Clinic6 hours
Fullerton HealthS$278 Clinic6 hours 
Swab StationS$288 Clinic8 hours
Kingsway MedicalS$288 Clinic 8 hours 
Jaga-MeS$316 Home6 hours 
Speeddoc
S$319Home8-12 hours
IMCS$321Clinic 4-6 hours 
InteMedicalS$321Clinic6-8 hours
Osler HealthS$350Clinic8 hours
Paddington MedicalS$380Clinic8 hours

At-home PCR Tests

For those seeking additional convenience, at-home swabbing is also available. This is understandably less cost-effective for a single individual, but if you’re travelling as a family, the prices tend to fall from the second person onwards.

🏠 At-Home PCR Testing
Provider1 PaxAdditional Pax
PDT Swab SGS$98S$98
The Testing ProS$118S$112
DA ClinicS$128S$90
BCH-ARTS$130S$130
ATA MedicalS$132S$82
Healthway MedicalS$138S$108
Fast PDT SwabS$168S$168
Swab StationS$168S$168
SpeeddocS$168
(book via app)
S$168
HomageS$180S$100
Jaga-MeS$209S$102

At-home tele-ARTs

For those looking to do pre-departure ARTs, tele-supervised options are also available. You’ll need to add on the cost of your own HSA-approved ART kit, which will be ~S$3. 

📹 Tele-ARTs
Provider
(📱= app based)
Operating Hours
(SGT)
🠕 Price
Lion Health8 a.m to 2 a.mS$9
📱 MaNaDr9 a.m to 9 p.mS$11
📱 MyCLNQ24 hoursS$12
📱 Hidoc9 a.m to 4.30 p.m
(weekdays only)
S$12
📱 Minmed9 a.m to 9 p.m 
(weekdays only)
S$12
Kingston Medical9 a.m to 6 p.mS$12.90
Intemedical8 a.m to 11 p.mS$15
Swab N Go10 a.m to 7 p.mS$15
BCH-ART8.30 a.m to 8.30 p.mS$15
Belief Family Clinic24 hoursS$18
(after hours surcharge applies)
📱 Doctor Anywhere8 a.m to 10 p.mS$21.40
📱 Raffles Connect24 hoursS$23
The Tenteram Clinic6 a.m to 11.30 p.mS$25
Fullerton Health9 a.m to 5 p.mS$25
Swab Station8 a.m to 5 p.mS$25
Unihealth24 hoursS$25
(+S$14-24 for after hours, weekend and PH)
Healthway Medical9 a.m to 9 p.m
(9 a.m to 5 p.m on weekend/ PH)
S$25
Bethesda MedicalVaries by dayS$26.75
📱 Speedoc8 a.m to 8 p.mS$26.75

Notarising PDT results

Travellers are required to digitally authenticate and notarise their test certificate via the Notarise website prior to travel.

However, in some cases the clinic or lab issuing your certificate may already have done it for you. This was the case for my PDT from Kingsway Medical, which was issued by Accredify.

Swab results issued by Accredify are automatically notarised. The notarised copy along with its QR code has been appended to your digital pre-departure memo. There are no further actions required from you.

You can check if the endorsement has been done by scanning the online verification QR code, which should bring you to Verify. Otherwise, it’s a simple matter of uploading the HealthCerts.oa file provided by the clinic for verification. 

The digitally authenticated and endorsed PDT HealthCert and QR code will be emailed to you within 15 minutes. If you presented your NRIC at the medical facility, the QR code will also be automatically uploaded onto your SingPass app.

There is no need to notarise your ART result, and in any case, not all ART results can be notarised. 

You can read the full set of FAQs regarding the notarisation process here.

What tests can’t be used for travel?

LHS: On-arrival PCR test results from Changi Airport | RHS: Pre-departure test results from Kingsway Medical

As a general guide, pre-departure test results must state the lab name, a negative result, and feature your: 

  • Full name
  • Date of birth
  • Passport number

What card should you use for payment?

Swabs at private clinics should code as MCC 8011: Doctors or Physicians. So long as contactless payments are accepted, you can use the cards below to maximise the miles you earn. 

CardEarn RateRemarks
UOB Pref. Plat Visa
Apply
4.0 mpdMax S$1,110 per c. month, must use mobile payments
Review
UOB Visa Signature 
Apply
4.0 mpdS$1K-2K per s. month on contactless/ petrol
C. Month= Calendar Month, S. Month= Statement Month

Remember, UOB cards exclude rewards for MCC 8062: Hospitals, so if your swab takes place there you may not earn miles. 

If you’re prepaying for your swab online, then you can use the following cards. 

CardEarn RateRemarks
Citi Rewards
Apply
4.0 mpdMax S$1K per s. month, excludes travel
Review
DBS WWMC
Apply
4.0 mpdMax S$2K per c. month
Review
C. Month= Calendar Month, S. Month= Statement Month

Do note that just because your credit card details are captured online doesn’t mean the transaction itself is processed online. The general rule is that if you receive an OTP, it’s definitely an online transaction. However, the absence of an OTP in itself does not mean an offline transaction. 

Conclusion

The cost of pre-departure COVID-19 PCR testing keeps falling, with the cheapest tests now starting at just S$50. There’s also various options available for in-home and express testing, providing additional flexibility. 

If you need an ART result, you best bet is to a tele-ART from the comfort of home, with prices starting from just S$9.

Aaron Wong
Aaron Wong
Aaron founded The Milelion to help people travel better for less and impress chiobu. He was 50% successful.

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ernie eong

i am getting one done in the geylang area on 30Jan and am hoping to board a flight singapore – yangon Myanmar 02 Feb but am waiting for the visa issuers to com eback on line so i can get to my next destinationi am getting my covid test done at AnTeh dispensary SG$168all up so fingers crossed i have had almost 12 covid tests done from Auckland to now so it is pianless to do.does anyone know much of flights into yangon as thet’re all stopped until 31 Jan ?

Deb

OCBC Cards has discount as well – $150 for PCR or $190 for PCR + serology if you purchase on the HealthPass by OCBC app for tests at Healthway medical clinic. Info on their website: https://www.healthpassbyocbc.sg/

LionDen

What’s the best credit card to use to earn the most miles from PCR test? Are miles cards excluded from earning points since these are clinics/hospital.

Adam

There’s a Milelion article on this — please do a search.

Drakka66

I have the same question. If someone has the link to. Milelion’s article on what card to use for PCR and ART tests, pls post link here. Tried to search for it but couldn’t find. Came back from a VTL flight this morning and had to pay $500 (for family of 4) for the Day 1 test. First instinct was to take out UOB PPV, since I have been using Amaze paired with other cards. Then, remembered that Healthcare is excluded category and I was suddenly at a loss on what card to use… didn’t bring the All-purposes cash back… Read more »

Zaos

UOB ONE card, maybe? Only excludes hospitals.

TanKH

Do you guys reckon vaccinated people still need to be tested? Is this the same as the antigen rapid test?

Marcus Chong

I really hope we don’t have to do such tests when you are vaccinated.

TM

Just found out that the safra discount at raffles medical doesn’t apply for covid testing (as of 26 Jan).

TM

Ah shucks, forgot to do so. They were quite insistent that the discount applies only to normal GP consultation though

Doris

Acumed prices have dropped to $157 (before GST)

Khin

I found one clinic at Geylang Bahru MRT Station that did my worker’s predeparture covid swab for $148 flat. Went at 2pm, I got test results memo at 10pm. Would recommend people to go there

asprino

$160 at raffles and acumed if you hold a CX tix

Lila

It might be useful to add Osler Health to this list also. They are the most popular option in the expat community and there are lots of travelers there so it would be a useful reference. It is 60 dollars for an ART test there.

ANG

Hi Aaron, would you know if the 72/48 hours starts from the time of the report, or the time the swab was taken? Because for the 48 hours requirement, it can get tight at times. Thanks!

Raghuram

Do I need to do ART if I’m flying to Spain. But layover at Milan. Not exiting plane. Taking Singapore Airlines

Thomas

Not very sure myself, please help

Alejandro Mas

No – you don’t get off the plane. It’s a stop-over.

sebastian

I am planning to travel to Italy end Oct. wondering i am right with the revised procedure and glad to hearing yr comments.
1. do a PCR 72 hrs before departure as is a requirement by Singapore government though italy accept both PCR/ART,
2. as i will travel on a VTL flight by SQ, there will be no need for me to do any test in italy prior to departure for singapore,
3. upon arrival into SIngapore, need to do a PCR test .
thanks

PYn

1. I don’t think you need to take a PCR 72h before, just a ART test.
2. You need to take PCR test in Italy before 48/72h boarding.
3. Yes, you need to still take the PCR test in SG.
Correct me if I am wrong?

Jin

I am planning to fly from Singapore to Frankfurt then to Rome then back to Singapore. Based on your article, I do not have to do PDT on arrival at Frankfurt ya? But I have to do PDT on both arrivals to Rome and Singapore?

Reeve

Can pre-departure ART (instead of PCR) tests be notarized?

Karen Wong

Italy accept ART Test – but is only for 24 hrs validity?

Angelica Wu

I saw the cheapest clinic PDT test on pdtswab.sg at 107 and they do a home swab service at 138. I saw that they are under Q&M, my boyfriend booked for the home swab service for his business trip to Germany , booking was an ease and we did not have to notarise our health cert because they have done it for us. highly recommended.

Ramesh

I saw that on their website too, will be trying to book them for my trip to Malaysia. thank you

kyh

how long do they take to release the results?

Ken

I flew to Zurich earlier this month as saw on the Singapore Airline website that flights to Switzerland accepts the PDT ART but when I called the embassy they say that they accept professionally administered ART but 24 hours prior on arrival to Switzerland which is tight on the time, so look into PDT PCR with pdtswab.sg, they were very professional and very helpful. I opted for their home swab service, The price difference makes it worth it rather than queuing up at the clinic.

Enil Esav

ART at Q&M Medical Group is $30 instead of the $25 listed above.

http://www.qandmmedical.com.sg/COVID-19-Testing

Goh SH

Hi saw the Straits Times . is there any cheaper option for saliva PCR testing for travel? Want this for my kids, they are afraid of swabs. https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/saliva-testing-approved-in-singapore-for-covid-19-pre-departure-tests-of-travellers

SKS

What about the $15 ART test at QTC/CTCs? Can they be used for PDT?

Jason

Anyone actually tried and got rejected? I’d imagine shouldn’t be a problem if the results screen from MOH is printed out with QR code

Will

I booked at QTC at Funan on Dec 17 for a Dec 18 flight to US (PDT window is one day prior). Got there and was told it’s not valid for PDT because they only send you SMS, which does not have identifying info like passport or birthdate. Their tests are for pre-event and post-VTL. I had to scramble to find a clinic that would let me come in right away for an Express PCR. Not a fun morning.

Zaos

The QTC can (but not always?) show up in TraceTogether app, fwiw.

Yogi

Hi ART test done last night ( 19th) for USA travel today at Raffles Medical in Changi Airport. They dont give anything other than a piece of paper stating the test is negative and also a sms which take you to a SG gove site confirming its negative. No .oa file to upload to Notarise and Verify doesnt work. Rang raffles and they said thats all they do. Hope thats enough to get on the flight.

Salmon Lee

Confirming the same issue, with my ART test unable to be notarised as there was no .oa file to upload. The sms leads to the MOH certificate with a QR code, with passport number stated. I assume that is OK for boarding.

But when you reach your destination, will that country’s passport control / customs accept that document? Anybody knows?

Salmon Lee

Ok, I just went through check in, using my Health Hub to show vaccination status, and the QR code generated by the SMS after my ART test to prove test result. Am sitting at the lounge now with a glass of champagne, so I suppose I got it all right.

ART

Based on your list, shouldn’t the cheapest pre-departure ART test be Northeast Medical at $20?

Ortloc

Their website says “Cost of non-subsidized ART: $20 (excluding GST and consult charges)”. I hope $21.40 is the full and final cost and the “consult charges” are not tagged on.

Teng

Hey, Finland requires pre-departure testing not older than 48 hours from 21 Dec.

JLo

There is a multi pax discount for home-based PCR with DA. I just paid $218 for 2 pax ($109/pax). Pretty good deal

Carl

Think Denmark requires PDT too, not sure if I’m correct ?

Anonymous

We cancelled our appointment with Pdtswab as they were very unresponsive. Although it has been more than three weeks since our cancellation and even after numerous chasers, they have yet to refund our fees which were paid in advance. It is not a pleasant experience.

Anonymous

Update: We continued to chase them through multiple platforms but did not receive any response. We have also heard of experiences whereby Pdtswab had errors in the PCR certificate resulting in much anxiety at the airport. At this stage, we do not think that we would be able to get our money back and do not think it’s worth our time to continue pursuing our claims. Would advise all to avoid them.

Lastly, thank you Milelion for all the help and guidance you have provided to us readers! Truly grateful.

John Sng

I did mine at Belief Family Clinic for $108. Good service and responsive.

https://belief.sg/familyclinic/covid/

Lingjie

For Malaysia VTL, consider Medivent a one stop solution, including insurance.

blob:https://milelion.com/dd3d0779-ec91-487b-b9bc-124bbce2831f

Lianjie

For Malaysia VTL, try Mediven for a one stop ART test package and insurance.

https://fb.watch/aX4qX0Zyr5/

Ben Ho

Check out TheTestingPro. For Pre-Departure PCR $96 / Administered ART $25 [Both with Notarised Digital HealthCert) 6 centres around the island.

Tiak

Actually, the link provided by Aaron for TheTestingPro leads you to the Klook page, where you can buy a voucher to do ART for 91.20, and if you apply his VISA10JOY promo code (valid till 18 March), it’s only 81.20. I even got a $1.20 cashback by starting with Shopback.

Jordy

Hey Aaron, just wondering, if you have recovered from Covid19 and are travelling within the next 90days, is a PDT/PCR still required? Heard from somewhere that only a ART is needed?

Saywai

if you are talking about PDT for entry to another country, it depends on the country’s rules. E.g. Canada requires a PCR test as proof of covid recovery

Ken

Please don’t use PDT SWAB service. It’s been a horrible experience. Super long queues – uncertain whether can get results on time. They make you prepay for the service. And when I cancelled my appointment and asked for a refund – they completely ignored my refund request for 3 months (and counting) via email and WhatsApp. I’m lodging a complaint with CASE Consumer Association. Beyond unprofessional. Never before in Singapore Gosh.

chl

Return on VTL flight can do unsupervised ART within 24 hours. Can save a bit of money esp if use the ART kit bought in Malaysia 🙂

John

Had great experience dealing with Abraxir. V friendly and super responsive. Prices competitive too.

http://abraxir.com

Van

Turns out some of these advertised tele ART prices are deceptive. Minmed said they charge $12, but I just did one with them, and they actually charged $33.4 because you have to pay a doctor consultation fee as well. I didn’t have time to find an alternative so just paid it. You can see it hidden in the “connecting for supervised ART” section that I only found after 🙁

Van

Also the app video calling doesn’t work, so the doc had to WhatsApp call me. Sigh

Van

Guess that’s what they say, but I did select supervised ART and got hit with both fees :/ maybe just bad luck

Bryan

Hey Aaron, I’d suggest removing Kingston from that list. Yes they are cheap but you’re not really paying $12 for a tele-ART. Instead what you get is a total shit show of bungled schedules, unresponsive staff, & a screaming mess of irate customers.

Henry

Avoid Kingston tele ART. It did not happen and you will never get through their hotline (stated on the booking). Walking into clinic could be cheaper* and won’t give you anxiety.

Saywai

Canada requires pre-departure covid tests for unvaxed children aged 5-12, regardless of accompanying parents’ vaccination statuses. And note that 2 jabs are needed to be considered vaccinated, even for recovered patients!

Saywai

Thanks. And now Canada has allowed removed testing requirement for unvaccinated children below 12 who are accompanying vaccinated adults 🙂

Intemedical

Hi, Intemedical PCR is now $80 nett! Eff 19 Apr 2022

Dylan
Boyle

Did mine with them just yesterday though, did they stop?

James Quek

Hopefully New Zealand and South Korea will scrap PDT and on arrival testing requirements soon.

Tong Seng Lee

I travelled to Cambodia in May 2022, No PDT required.

Rohit

I believe for traveling to India, unvax child below 12 yo needs PCR test.

Tai

Gentle AND cheap PCR test?

Which of the cheaper ones is also gentle?

Had some really horrible ones and rather pay 20 dollars more for a gentle test.

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