POY Asia is open to holders of passports from the following countries/territories: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Cyprus, Georgia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Yemen.

In addition, we also welcome submissions from photographers who aren’t holding any of the above-mentioned passports but can prove that they have been working out of Asia for the past three years.

‘the caption helps’

When you tune in to the ‘live’ judging of POY Asia, don’t be surprised to hear some of these commonly used phrases.
‘the caption helps’ is one good example.
Without a doubt, caption will always be a big talking point at POY Asia judging because we are first and foremost a competition that is built around the photojournalism and documentary photography community.
By default, we prefer editorial captions with the who, what, where, when and why.
Usually read in the final rounds of each category, captions play a big role in the judging process and often decide if a picture progresses to the next stage or not.
Well-written captions with relevant details strengthen your entry. When judges are impressed by the additional info provided by a well-crafted caption, they often say, “the caption helps”.
Final decisions have often been settled by the quality of captions.
A powerful image with all the expected aesthetic elements is impressive but a beautiful picture without context doesn’t win the hearts of POY Asia judges.
We don’t want or need lengthy essays or thesis but accuracy is a must.
Context is important; direct quotes also add points.
Don’t believe us? Just read the captions for all the awardees in POY Asia 2021 and 2022.