Getting Around in Singapore

With its good road and rail networks, getting around Singapore is easy, safe and efficient. The comprehensive public transport system offers seamless transfers from bus to MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) and vice-versa, bringing commuters to their destinations via a reliable, clean and pleasant mode of transport.

Travel by taxi is affordable, comfortable and fast as taxi drivers know their roads well. A good guide to Singapore's public transport system is available at the PublicTransport@SG website. Visitors to Singapore can use the Singapore Tourist Pass, which offers all-day unlimited travel on the MRT and LRT, and basic bus services. One-, Two- and Three-day Passes are available.

Mass Rapid Transit (MRT)

The MRT is the backbone of Singapore's public transport network and spans some 178 km along four lines - East-West Line; North-South Line, North-East Line and Circle Line. The train system is managed by two operators - SMRT Corporation and SBS Transit.

Operation Hours

5.30am to about midnight daily (usually extended during festive periods)

Train Frequency

Peak hours (7am to 9am): About two to three minutes; Off-peak hours: About five to seven minutes

Fares

  • Charged by distance travelled
  • Free Pre-Peak Travel was introduced in 24 June 2013 and extended till 23 June 2015, commuters enjoy free MRT rides to 18 city areas if they tap out before 7.45am, and enjoy up to $0.50 off if they tap out before 8am
  • Payment by contactless stored-value Fare Card or a Standard Ticket
Light Rail Transit (LRT)

Complementing the MRT system is the LRT system which is designed to bring commuters closer to their homes. It is a feeder service comprising driverless train-cars.

More information about the MRT and LRT system, distance fare scheme, fare calculator and different types of Fare Cards is also available at these websites:

Bus

Public buses include trunk services, feeder services, Express services and special business services like Nite Owl, Chinatown Direct, Parks Services and others. As at end-March 2012, about 48.1% of the bus fleet are wheelchair-accessible new buses fitted with ramps. All buses will be fully wheelchair-accessible by 2020.

The majority of public buses are managed by two operators - SMRT Corporation and SBS Transit - which also manage the MRT.

All bus-stops in Singapore provide bus route information guides. Several bus-stops are also equipped with real-time bus arrival information.

You can download the following mobile applications for more information about the bus arrival times:

Operation hours

About 5.15am to past midnight daily

Bus frequency

Around 10 to 30 minutes

Fares

  • Charged by distance travelled
  • Payment by cash or stored-value Fare Card
Taxi

There are six taxi operators in Singapore.
You can hail a taxi along the road, wait in line at a taxi stand, make a phone booking or use a mobile application to call for one.

Taxi Company Hotline
Comfort 6552 1111
CityCab 6552 1111
SMRT Taxis 6555 8888
Trans-Cab Services 6555 3333
Premier Taxis 6363 6888
Prime Taxi Services 6778 0808

Taxi Fare, Booking Rates & Surcharges

All taxi rides are metered. As a guide, the flag-down fare is between $3 and $8. The distance fare is about $0.22 every 350m to 400m. Call booking rates range from $2.30 to $5.00. ERP rates (refer to Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) System section), time-based surcharges, and location surcharges apply.
 

Driving in Singapore

To drive in Singapore, you must possess a valid Singapore driving licence for the class of vehicle that you want to drive. For more information about how to convert your foreign driving licence to a Singapore driving licence, as well as the pre-requisites for conversion, please check the Singapore Traffic Police website at: driving-in-singapore.spf.gov.sg

Anyone who wishes to register a new vehicle in Singapore must first obtain a Certificate of Entitlement (COE) in the appropriate vehicle category. A COE represents a right to vehicle ownership and use of the limited road space for 10 years. COEs are released through competitive bidding.

More information about COEs and how to bid for them is available at the Land Transport Authority (LTA) website at: www.lta.gov.sg/content/ltaweb/en/roads-and-motoring.html

ERP

Singapore uses the Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) system, which is based on a pay-as-you-use principle. The ERP rates vary for different roads and time periods, depending on local traffic conditions.

An in-vehicle unit (IU) is a device that Singapore-registered vehicles must be fitted with if they wish to use roads with ERP gantries.

ERP charges are paid through:

  • A stored-value card inserted in the IU, or
  • Credit card payment via MotorPay (www.motorpay.com.sg)

Vehicles fitted with the new-generation IU, called the dual-mode IU, can pay ERP charges using:

  • NETS CashCard, or
  • CEPAS-compliant stored value card issued by Ezlink, NETS or Transitlink

To check ERP rates for each gantry location, use the interactive map at: interactivemap.onemotoring.com.sg

More information about ERP, IU and payment modes is available at the LTA website at: www.lta.gov.sg

Drivers with foreign-registered vehicles can pay for ERP charges in different ways:

  • Rent an IU and insert the relevant card for ERP deductions
  • Pay through the Autopass card

More information about different payment modes for foreign-registered vehicles is available at the LTA website at: www.lta.gov.sg

 

Driving to Singapore from Malaysia

Autopass Card

An Autopass card is required for all vehicles entering Singapore via the Woodlands or Tuas Checkpoint. Autopass cards are issued at all vehicle entry permit (VEP)/Tolls office at the Singapore Checkpoint (arrival zone) at a cost of S$10 each (non-refundable card cost of S$6 and pre-loaded cash value of S$4). The vehicle’s valid road tax disc is required for verification at the point of card issuance. It is an offence for a foreign motorist to enter Singapore without an Autopass card for the foreign-registered vehicle.

The Autopass card can be used to pay your ERP charges if you drive a foreign-registered vehicle.

IU Rental for Foreign-registered Vehicles

Rental of car and motorcycle IUs are available only at Tuas and Woodlands Checkpoints, at a cost of S$10.30 for a two-day rental. There is a refundable deposit of S$124.65 Nett (inclusive of 7% GST). Alternatively, you can choose to install an IU permanently in your car at a cost of S$160.50 Nett (inclusive of 7% GST) at authorised IU centres.

ERP Payment using Autopass Card

If you do not want to install an IU, the fixed ERP fees scheme will apply.

Foreign-registered vehicles will be charged a flat ERP rate of S$5 for each day the vehicle is used on ERP roads during ERP-operation hours. The amount will be automatically deducted from the Autopass card at the immigration booth (departure zone). Remember to top up your Autopass card to pay the ERP fees, VEP fees and Toll charges before you proceed to the Checkpoint as there is no Autopass card top-up facility within the Checkpoint premises.

More information about ERP, IU and payment modes is available at the FAQ section of the LTA website at: www.lta.gov.sg

 

Parking

Coupon-parking lots are designated by signs placed at the entrance of Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and Housing & Development Board (HDB) carparks or alongside the kerb-side parking lots. Parking coupons can be purchased from URA, HDB and authorised sellers including convenience stores and petrol stations.

Some housing estates use the electronic pricing system for car-parking. An IU, with the relevant card inserted, is required to pay for parking in such carparks.

Commercial buildings, malls and mixed-use developments which offer their own parking spaces are free to set their own rates and payment modes.