International Business & Economy In Singapore 13-month bonus is a privilege but not compulsory

In Singapore 13-month bonus is a privilege but not compulsory




- Advertisement -

It is that time of the year when many workers look forward to be paid an additional salary, the 13-month bonus (or Annual Wage Supplement) and the variable bonus. The Public Service Division (PSD) has already announced that its officers will receive 0.95-month variable bonus (also known as Annual Variable Component) this year.

The PSD said on Friday (Nov 25) that with the traditional 13th-month payout, civil servants will get a total of 1.95 months bonus this year. Such statements may suggest that the 13-month bonus is compulsory in Singapore. But unlike certain countries in ASEAN, the 13-month bonus is not compulsorily paid out in Singapore, but is a privilege. The Ministry of Manpower clarifies:


The 13-month bonus is compulsory in some countries where workers are typically paid on a monthly basis (instead of a weekly one) because workers are typically underpaid on most months except February. Blogger ‘A Singaporean in Australia‘ explains it as such:

“There are four weeks in a month and we get paid for 28 days in a month. that’s it. Straightforward.
In short we are underpaid in every other month other than February.
January – 3 days
March – 3 days
April – 2 days
May – 3 days
June – 2 days
July – 3 days
August – 3 days
September – 2 days
October – 3 days
November – 2 days
December – 3 days
3 + 3 + 2 + 3 + 2 + 3 + 3 + 2 + 3 + 2 + 3 = 29 days.
The shorter way to calculate this would be:
1 month 4 weeks.
You get paid 12 times a year = 12 x 4 = 48 weeks.
There are 52 weeks in a year. 52 – 48 = 4 weeks unpaid
The fact is that Singapore employers hold 29 days of your pay over the year and could refuse to pay you your rightful money if you did not ‘perform’. Even if they do it, that meant many employees in Singapore did not get any bonuses from their companies at all. The 13th month is your pay. It is Not a bonus!”
- Advertisement -

Send in your scoop to 

- Advertisement -

NAC: Stop quarrelling with The Substation and help Chiya Amos

The late DPM, Foreign and Culture Minister S Rajaratnamonce observed that many Singaporeans knew the exact price of almost everything but could not always appreciate the real value of certain things. I might add until it’s too late. Is this trait...

Pining for pizza? These pizzerias will surely satisfy your cravings

Singapore — With all the interesting food choices out there, pizza remains a fan favourite, perfect for pleasing palates of all ages. But where to go for your pizza fix? Tired of nondescript, fast food-style pizza? It is a universal truth...

Ong Ye Kung: Train fares so far are not enough to cover operating costs

Singapore – While the government will continue to subsidise rail and bus operations, the bill to taxpayers "cannot keep ballooning," said Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung, noting fares also need to be adjusted. Speaking in Parliament during his ministry's Committee of Supply...

Send in your scoop to