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Sign Licence Requirements

FAQ on advertising sign / signboard licence requirements
  1. Do I need to apply for a licence?
  2. Why do I need to apply for a licence?
  3. Can I be exempted from applying for a licence?
  4. Is my sign an advertisement sign or a signboard?
  5. What is my sign type categorised under?
  6. Are there any signs which I am not allowed to display outdoor?
  7. What are the requirements that I have to comply with before I can get the licence?
  8. How much do I have to pay for the licence/permit? Click here to calculate your licence fee!
  9. Your essential guide to applying for an outdoor advertising sign and signboard licence

FAQ on advertising sign / signboard licence requirements

  1. Do I need to apply for a licence?
  2. You will need to apply for a licence if you display an outdoor advertising sign or signboard.

    "Outdoors" includes any roofed space that is not fully enclosed on all sides and which facilitates the flow of general pedestrian traffic or is accessible to the public.

    There are however, exemptions to the outdoor advertising sign and signboard where licences are not required. These exemptions are listed in the Outdoor Advertising Sign / Signboard Exemption list.

  3. Why do I need to apply for a licence?
  4. BCA regulates the display of outdoor advertising signs and signboards. All businesses planning to display such outdoor signs are required to obtain a licence from BCA. This is to prevent proliferation of unlicensed and unsightly signs which may mar the streetscape.

  5. Can I be exempted from applying for a licence?
  6. You can only be exempted from applying for a licence if your sign falls under one of the categories below:

    1. any single signboard or a series of related signboards with a total area of not more than 5 square meters;
    2. signboard displayed by:
      • anyreligious body;
      • any Government-aided school; or
      • any hospital, clinic, dispensary, nursing or welfare home or hospice, run by any charity (whether registered under the Charities Act (Cap. 37) or otherwise);
    3. any advertisement or signboard displayed:
      • on any stall within a hawker centre, food centre or market; or
      • in any underpass, tunnel or mass rapid transit station;

  7. Is my sign an advertisement sign or a signboard?
  8. For a more accurate assessment of the sign category, please submit a consultation via the online
    Advertisement licensing System(ALS).

    In general,

    • An advertisement is any logo, symbol, sign, notice, representation or other visual device that promotes any goods, products, brands, services or events.
    • A signboard is any sign, notice, representation or other visual device relating to the place or premises to which it is affixed, but does not include any logo, symbol, sign, notice, representation or other visual device containing any other brand name or trade mark that promotes any goods or services.

  9. What is my sign type categorised under?
  10. Category Description
    Free standing sign Advertisement or signboard on structures which stand on its own.
    Directional sign Directs vehicular or pedestrian traffic to, or advising the public of a place or facility.
    Animated billboard Advertisement that displays, at any one time, one or more advertisements consisting of visual moving pictures, or those which are able to move or change colour due to the use of electrical, mechanical or other sources of power.
    Balloon sign Advertisement or signboard that is inflated, tethered to and suspended above any building, premises or open ground and is conspicuously visible against the sky from any street or building below.
    Skysign Advertising structure that is displayed on or above the roof, parapet or eaves of a building, or extends above the roof line of a building, and is conspicuously visible against the sky from any street or building below.

  11. Are there any signs which I am not allowed to display outdoor?
  12. Below are the signs which are prohibited to be displayed outdoor:

    1. Advertisement signs and signboards which are illuminated by means of flickering, flashing and running lights. [Except certain streets along Orchard Road, Bras Basah/Bugis and Chinatown (New Bridge Road / Eu Tong Sen Street). please refer to URA website under the circulars for the boundary of these areas.]
    2. Advertisement signs on free standing structures promoting any brands, products, goods or services.
    3. Advertisement signs on buildings above roofs or roof parapet levels.
    4. Advertisement signs on public infrastructure and their ancillary structures (e.g, entrance & exit structures to Rapid transit System stations and underpasses, MRT viaduct columns, and kiosks.)
    5. Advertisement signs on residential buildings and residential component of mixed-use buildings.
    6. Advertisement signs located within or in the vicinity of the boundary of airports and airbases.
    7. Advertisement signs located over or within any public streets, which include expressways, flyovers, bridges, railings, central median dividers, traffic islands; and on trees or bushes.
    8. Advertisement signs within water catchment areas, public open spaces, nature reserves, waterbodies, along coastlines; and on vacant land.

  13. What are the guidelines and requirements that I have to comply with before I can get the licence?
  14. For you to obtain a licence, your proposed advertising sign / signboard must comply with the followings:

    1. Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA)'s Outdoor Signage Guidelines

      1. In the Central Area
      2. Outside the Central Area
      3. Conservation Building
    2. please visit the URA Map to check the location where your proposed advertising signs / signboard fall under.

    3. Building and Construction Authority (BCA)'s Regulations

      1. Building Control (Outdoor Advertising) Regulations

        Scenario Requirements projection of the sign
        Sign fixed in a verandah-way or over a footpath Shall not be less than 2.5 metres above the level of the verandah-way or footpath Refer to Sample No. 1
        Sign projecting over any street above the cover of any roadside drain Shall not be erected less than 2.5 metres above the cover of the roadside drain Refer to Sample No. 2
        Sign projecting from the building line more than 3.75 metres but less than 5 metres above street Shall not project more than 60 centimetres from the regular line of the street Refer to Sample No. 3
        Sign projecting from the building line 5 metres or more above street Shall not project more than 1.5 metres from the regular line of the street Refer to Sample No.4
      2. Building Control (Temporary Building) Regulations

        You have to obtain a temporary building permit for the advertising sign/signboard, where applicable, before the sign licence can be granted to you.

    4. Other Guidelines and Requirements (where applicable)

      1. Guidelines on signs at bus shelters (2,279KB, pdf)
      2. Guidelines for display of banner
        1. The top edge of the banner must not be higher than 30 metre from the ground level.
        2. The area of the banner should not exceed 50% of the surface area of the building facade, as measured up to 30 metre from the ground level.
        3. A maximum of 3 banners can be displayed on the building facade at any given time
        4. For banners put up for a National Event, the brand name of the sponsor must not take up more than 15% of the banner area to enjoy a waiver of licence.
      3. LTA's guidelines and technical requirements on display of vertical banners on public street lamp posts (320KB, pdf)
      4. Requirements for sign display along Orchard Road
      5. Sign on lampposts and banner poles within the development boundary along Orchard Road are required to have the proposed artwork endorsed by Orchard Road Business Association (ORBA) before sending them for an in-principle approval consultation to BCA and URA. please send all application to BCA. The corresponding details of ORBA are as follows:

        Orchard Road Business Association
        91 Tanglin Road
        #04-04 Tanglin place
        Singapore 247918
        Tel: 67331700
        Fax: 67331077
        E-mail: info@orchardroad.org

        [Note: For applications for the display of outdoor signage within the Central Area, on road related facilities and structures, grass verge, etc, consultation with the other relevant agencies may be required. BCA may disclose your application form to:

        1. other relevant government agencies; and
        2. other non-government entities where such entities have been authorised to carry out specific government services to process the application you have submitted.]

  15. How much do I have to pay for the licence/ permit? Click here to calculate your licence fee!
  16. Type of licence Basis of Chargeable Fee Rate per Year
    Signboard licence * Up to 15m2 $50 per licence
    Above 15m2 $20 per m2 or part thereof in excess of 5m2
    Advertisement licence
    Directional Sign licence
    Free Standing Signboard licence
    Up to 1m2 ** $20 per sign
    Above 1m2 to 5m2 $90 per sign
    Above 5m2 to 10m2 $140 per sign
    Above 10m2 $20 per m2 or part thereof per sign
    Animated Billboard licence Up to 10m2 $225 per sign
    Above 10m2 $30 per m2 or part thereof per sign
    Skysign licence
    Balloon Sign licence
    Display Area $40 per m2 or part thereof per sign

    Note: * Every business premises is eligible to a one time aggregate 5m2 signboard exemption.
      You can request for the exemption during the online consultation via Advertisement licensing System (ALS).
    ** please note that all Advertisements / Directional Signs / Banners up to 1m2 are classified as small advertisements.

    permit fee is charged at $10.00/ month for each advertising structure.

    The minimum chargeable period of the licence/permit is one month (subject to a minimum fee of $20.00). The licence/permit period exceeding this duration will be pro-rated to the next 1 month.

    e.g: licence / permit Duration: 5 May to 4 June is taken as one month.
    licence / permit Duration: 5 May to 5 June is taken as two months.