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NS Pay, Benefits And Perks For Those Who Serve

Denise Bay

Denise Bay

Last updated 03 January, 2023

NS rank pay (think: NS allowance) and the various NS benefits available are important to those who serve.

Literally like “Ah Boys To Men”, male Singaporeans and PRs go through a rite of passage as they enlist and serve the nation for two whole years. Upon conscription, these young men officially become Full-time National Servicemen (NSFs). Besides forging camaraderie and building resilience all around, NSFs hone their skills defending Singapore. 

In recognition of their dedication to Singapore, NSFs earn a monthly allowance and have access to rewards and perks exclusive to those who live and breathe the Singaporean Bro Code. How much you earn every month depends on whether you wind up in the SAF, SCDF or SPF; your rank, and your vocation.


An SAF NSF’s allowance comprises the monthly rank allowance and vocation allowance (previously known as combat allowance). The higher your rank is, the higher your allowance, because of the need to bear more responsibilities as you work your way up. 

Both rank and vocation allowance are automatically credited into your bank account. Be sure to provide MINDEF with the correct bank account details! 

SAF NSF monthly rank allowance

Rank Starting Rank Allowance
Recruit or Private S$580
Lance Corporal S$600
Corporal S$650
Corporal First Class  S$690
Specialist Cadet S$670
Third Sergeant S$900
Second Sergeant S$1,000
First Sergeant S$1,070
Officer Cadet S$860
Second Lieutenant S$1,100
Lieutenant S$1,280

SAF NSF monthly vocation allowance

Vocations Monthly Vocation Allowance 
Service and Technical vocations S$50
All combatants except those under S/N 3 and 4 S$175
- Aircrew
- Armour, Guards, Infantry
- Combat Medics, Specialists or Officers in the Medical Response Force or deployed on the Singapore Civil Defence Force ambulances
- Seagoing
- Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defence or Explosive Ordinance Disposal
- Commando
- Naval Diver

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An SCDF NSF’s allowance is dependent only on the rank they hold. However, you may receive an operation allowance ranging between S$100 and S$300 depending on your vocation and unit. This operation allowance is in addition to your monthly rank-based allowance.

On top of that, meal allowances will be provided for when you’re on duty for six hours or more but meals aren’t provided. 

Rank Monthly Allowance
Recruit or Private S$580
Lance Corporal S$600
Corporal S$650
Specialist Cadet S$670
Sergeant 1 S$900
Sergeant 2 S$1,000
Officer Cadet S$860
Second Lieutenant S$1,100
Lieutenant S$1,280

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Similar to the pay structure for SAF NSFs, an SPF NSF’s allowance comprises the monthly rank allowance and vocation allowance. Those in higher ranks will be given higher allowance in recognition of their skills and heavier responsibilities. 

After graduating from the Home Team Academy, an SPF NSF will also receive a monthly meal allowance to cover their meals during duty hours. The meal allowance stands at S$100 for non-shift work and S$142 for shift work. 

SPF NSF monthly allowance

Rank Monthly Allowance
Trainee Special Constabulary Constable or Trainee Vigilante Corps S$580
Special Constabulary Constable or Vigilante Corps S$580
Special Constabulary Constable 2 or Vigilante Corps 2 S$600
Special Constabulary Corporal or Vigilante Corps Corporal S$650
Special Constabulary Sergeant 1 S$900
Special Constabulary Sergeant 2 S$1,000
Officer Cadet S$860
National Service Probationary Inspector S$1,100
National Service Inspector S$1,280

SPF NSF monthly vocation allowance

Operation Vocations Monthly Vocation Allowance 
- Trainee Special Constables (TSC)
- Company Commander
- Training Development Officer
- Assistant Compliance Manager
- Assistant Manpower Officer
- Operations Officer
- Staff Officer to Head Ops
- Assistant Trainer
- Staff Assistant
- S&T Staff Assistant
- Bandsmen
- Officer Cadet Trainees
- Division Security Officer- Assistant Ops Officer
- Dog Handler
- Person-in-Custody Officer
- Ops Support Officer
- C3 Operation
- Community Engagement Officer
- Assistant Navigation Officer
- TransCom Deputy Team Leader
- ProCom DOC Trooper
- Checkpoint Security Officer
- Ground Response Force Officer
- Police Coast Guard Officer
- TransCom Officer- ProCom Officer
- Division Special Taskforce Officer
- Police Tactical Trooper (NSI)
- Police Tactical Trooper

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NSF medical benefits 

All NSFs are entitled to comprehensive medical benefits throughout their two years of service. 

Consultation Location Entitlement 
Your unit’s medical centre  Free 
Restructured hospitals (upon referral by SAF for follow-up treatment) Subsidised according to your medical benefits scheme 
Outpatient Care Location Entitlement
Restructured hospitals and polyclinics Full subsidy upon showing your SAF identity card
Private clinics and hospitals Maximum reimbursement of S$20 per visit, subject to a cap of S$350 per calendar year

Bear in mind you’ll have to pay the first consultation fee at at restructured hospitals and polyclinics if you (i) don’t have a referral; (ii) were referred by a private doctor; or (iii) are referred to a consultant by name when you seek treatment

Prefer to seek outpatient treatment at Chinese Medical Halls run by physicians registered with the Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners’ Board? Keep in mind that these medical expenses incurred will not be reimbursed.

Hospitalisation benefits

Should there be a need for hospitalisation, NSFs are entitled to a 100% subsidy of the treatment charges (excluding non-subsidised items) and 80% subsidy of the ward and meal charges at restructured hospitals for their eligible ward class.

Rank Ward Eligibility At National University Hospital Ward Eligibility At All Other Restructured Hospitals
Recruit to Lance Corporal Class C Class C
Corporal to First Sergeant 6-bed Class B2
Officer Cadet to Lieutenant 4-bed Class B1 and B2+

For servicemen who are married, their dependents (i.e. wife and children) are also covered for hospitalisation benefits in accordance with the same ward eligibility as the servicemen. 

The servicemen will have to produce the CS medical benefits card, which they can get from their unit’s S1. While their dependents will enjoy a 100% subsidy of the treatment charges (excluding non-subsidised items), take note that a 50% subsidy will apply for their ward and meal charges. 

Service injury compensation

In the case of service injury, MINDEF/SAF will offer fully subsidised medical treatment at restructured hospitals, up to your eligible ward. As a form of compensation, MINDEF/SAF will continue to cover the medical cost incurred for the treatment of your service injury even after your Operationally Ready Date (ORD).

Other things to note 

As the medical benefits offered by MINDEF/SAF are rather comprehensive, you’ll be pleased to know the above-mentioned are the only entitlements available to servicemen. Servicemen can opt to upgrade their ward and co-pay their treatment charges.  

Also, your hospitalisation charges will continue to be subsidised up until you are discharged from the public hospital should you be hospitalised for a non-service injury or illness at your ORD.

NSF dental benefits 

All NSFs are entitled to receive free dental treatment, including wisdom tooth surgery, at the SAF Dental Clinics. You will enjoy subsidies according to your dental benefits scheme should you be referred to a restructured hospital for follow-up treatment.

Under the SAF Dental Subsidy Scheme, NSFs are entitled to 85% reimbursement of dental treatment expenses incurred at private dental clinics, restructured hospitals or polyclinics, subject to a cap of S$120 each calendar year. 

Keep in mind that subsidies apply to all types of dental treatment procedures and materials, excluding precious metals such as gold. 

NSF Singlife insurance coverage

All NSFs are entitled to term insurance and personal accident insurance coverage provided by the MINDEF/SAF Group Insurance

As of 1 January 2023, Singlife is the official insurer for the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) Group Insurance Scheme. It will provide life and personal accident insurance coverage for all MINDEF and MHA personnel. 

Key enhancements to the coverage include: 

  • S$300,000 (S$150,000 previously) in Group Term Life (GTL) cover
  • S$300,000 (S$150,000 previously) in Group Personal Injury (GPI) insurance cover  
  • For in-service personnel, the GPI cover is enhanced to more comprehensively cover conditions specific to MINDEF and MHA’s operating environment, such as noise-induced hearing damage or decompression sickness.
  • Under the voluntary scheme (available for all personnel to purchase on their own), there is also an increase in coverage for the GPI policy. Servicemen can now be covered for a maximum of S$1 million, up from the current maximum of S$600,000. They can also continue to purchase up to S$1 million in coverage under the GTL policy. 
  • Singlife is lowering rider premiums and enhancing coverage for all insured members. There are also extensive benefits for service personnel, including up to 57% discount and savings on a variety of motor, travel and home insurance policies, a dedicated customer service hotline, a dedicated claims team and additional value-added services from Singlife’s partner ecosystem.

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PAssion NSF Concession Card

NSFs can apply for the all-in-one PAssion NSF Concession Card prior to enlisting. Besides concessionary fares on public transport, NSFs who hold this card can look forward to enjoying an array of PAssion Card benefits and privileges, such as discounts at over 2,000 PAssion Merchant outlets, Member’s Rate for all CCs’ courses, activities and facilities and more. 

That’s not all. NFS with the PAssion NSF Concession Card can earn and redeem TapForMore Points whenever they shop at Cold Storage, Giant, and Guardian Health & Beauty stores. Aside from the ability to redeem for cash rebates to offset purchases, you can go a step further by converting these TapForMore Points into KrisFlyer miles

In case you were wondering, NSFs holding this card will get to enjoy complimentary PAssion Membership extension upon completion of their full-time National Service.

SAFRA benefits

SAFRA membership is open to NSFs, SAF NSmen, SAF regulars and their dependents. You may take a look at the ongoing membership promotion here

Here’s a quick look at some of the key benefits accompanying your SAFRA membership:

  • Up to 50% off F&B, grocery, leisure and other voucher deals on
  • Up to 16% fuel discount at Caltex
  • Movie treats
  • Exclusive access to SAFRA and other Clubs’ facilities
  • Exclusive benefits at over 1,800 merchant outlets
  • Redeem SAFRAPOINTS for exciting rewards
  • Earn 3% cash rebate on local MasterCard contactless transactions, 3% on online shopping, 3% on bus and train rides, and 0.3% on all other retail transactions with the DBS SAFRA Credit Card 
  • Earn 2% cash rebate on local MasterCard contactless transactions, 1% on online shopping, 2% on bus and train rides, and 0.3% on all other retail transactions with the DBS SAFRA Debit Card 

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Savings accounts, debit and credit cards for NSFs

Just as it’s time you get upgraded to a full-fledged, responsible adult with the help of National Service, you might want to consider upgrading your savings account to one that offers higher interest rates, such as the POSB Save As You Earn (SAYE) Account or DBS Multiplier Account

Like it or not, your supposedly trusty savings account from primary school that offers a paltry 0.05% interest per annum doesn’t cut it. 

An NSF like yourself should seriously think about opening a POSB SAYE Account simply because you can enrol in the POSB Save As You Serve (SAYS) programme

Besides letting you save conveniently each month when you set up a recurring savings action to transfer your indicated savings amount (e.g. S$50 or S$100 per month) from your POSB/DBS account into the POSB SAYE Account, you also stand to earn a bonus 2% p.a. interest on your monthly savings so long as you leave your savings in there to grow. 

Additionally, you can enjoy up to 2% cash rebate with no minimum spend with the DBS SAFRA Debit Card or HomeTeamNS-Passion-POSB Debit Card. Both debit cards give you access to SAFRA or HomeTeamNS Clubhouses & facilities, a curated selection of offers, and discounted passes to fun places like Universal Studios, Adventure Cove Waterpark and more.

DBS SAFRA Debit Card

DBS SAFRA Debit Card lets you earn 2% cash rebate on local Mastercard contactless transactions; 1% cash rebate on online transactions; and 0.3% cash rebate on all other retail transactions when you consolidate your expenses and spend a minimum of S$400 in a calendar month. Your cash rebates will be awarded in the form of SAFRA$, where SAFRA$1 is equivalent to S$1.

You will need to have a POSB Savings Account, DBS Savings Plus Account, DBS Autosave Account, or DBS Current Account to apply for the DBS SAFRA Debit Card.

PAssion POSB Debit Card

Doubling as a PAssion card with free PAssion membership, PAssion POSB Debit Card is another fantastic option to consider — especially if you love cooking and frequently shop for groceries. New cardmembers can enjoy a promotional 10% cashback on dining and groceries, with applicable terms and conditions. 

PAssion POSB Debit Card cardmembers can enjoy 4% cashback at Cold Storage, Market Place, Jasons, Giant and Guardian (online and in-stores); 1% cashback at Takashimaya, and a host of 1-for-1 deals. Keep in mind that you’ll have to spend a minimum of S$400 in a calendar month to enjoy the 4% cashback! 

You will need to have a POSB Savings Account, DBS Savings Plus Account, DBS Autosave Account, or DBS Current Account to apply for the PAssion POSB Debit Card.

DBS Live Fresh Student Credit Card

If you would like to take this time to get to know credit cards better and are at least 21, the DBS Live Fresh Student Credit Card is one to consider. This card lets you enjoy 5% cashback at eligible merchants and on sustainable spend, and 0.3% cashback on all other spends. 

There’s no minimum spend required in order to start racking up cashback, and you can earn up to S$50 cashback per calendar month. 

Although the credit limit is S$500, it doesn’t have any minimum income requirement. Also, you’ll enjoy a five-year annual fee waiver. 

DBS SAFRA Credit Card

Moving on to adulthood for real and making at least S$30,000 a year? The DBS SAFRA Credit Card could be a good fit if you frequent SAFRA Clubhouses and can’t bear to part with all the SAFRA privileges you’ve come to love during your NSF days. This card is available without annual fee as long as you remain a SAFRA member (although your SAFRA membership fee applies). 

Simply spend a minimum of S$500 in a calendar month to enjoy 3% cash rebate on local Mastercard contactless transactions, including bus/train rides via SimplyGo; 3% cash rebate on online transactions; and 0.3% cash rebate on all other retail transactions. 

Your cash rebates will be awarded in the form of SAFRA$, where SAFRA$1 is equivalent to S$1. Take note the maximum cash rebates you can earn each calendar month is capped at SAFRA$50.

Welcome Gift: Enjoy up to 10% rebates on dining and shopping spend when you make a min. monthly spend of S$500 for two consecutive months following card approval. Valid till 30 September 2021. T&Cs apply.

Read these next:
PAssion POSB Debit Card: The Decisive Review Guide (2021)
Debit Cards Versus Credit Cards in Singapore: Which Should You Use?
5 Things to Know When Graduating From Debit to Credit Cards
If I Get COVID-19, What Will I Need To Pay?
Best Savings Accounts in Singapore to Park Your Money


While Denise has a thing for travel, K-dramas, 0% sugar bbt (with boba!), Japanese cuisine and flat white, her curious nature means all sorts of random tabs are open on her phone 24/7. She doesn’t like to pay full price for anything, too.