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A Beginner’s Guide to Public Transport in Singapore

Are you new to Singapore? Are you confused by the public transport system here? Do you feel lost when boarding the MRT train? This guide is for all of you who are perplexed by its public transport system. This one provides useful information on the different modes of public transport, including their benefits:


What makes Singpapore’s SMRT popular? First, one of the trains, SMRT are air-conditioned. If you board the train during mid-day, after office hours, it can be really hot so air-conditioning is vital.

Second, their maps are easy to learn. This means that commuters can easily find out where they are on the line, which station they are currently at, and generally know where they need to go next. This makes commuting easier for newbies not familiar with Singapore’s train network yet.

Third, their railway network has a corresponding mobile app. They can check train times, know the fees, and see the different lines, making planning trips easier and faster.

Fourth, the team that runs it continuously works hard to resolve pressing issues as soon as possible. The SMRT chairman Seah Moon Ming resigned from his day job to focus on the betterment of the company and commuter rides, including improving engineering to reduce delays and repairs.

Commuting using the train system is convenient. You can use a service card every time you enter/exit a train station/bus interchange. Just tap the card on the gantry as you go in, and it’ll open automatically when entering a train station. If you’re changing from one line to another, just tap out at the end of your first ride using this card before boarding another train or bus.

Fares are distance-based, and you can pay per trip or purchase an unlimited travel card. You can get these from ticket machines at any train station and require a minimum top-up amount.

2. Buses

Although they are less popular than SMRTs, buses remain another cost-effective way to travel around the city-state. For one, they can travel inner roads. Further, they are less likely busy than the train system. Travellers can have more time to text, read a book, or see their destinations more leisurely.

Singapore buses are also disabled-friendly with ramps and designated spaces for people with wheelchairs. They have designated spaces reserved for those travelling with pushcarts and others who need additional support.

What makes them more accessible is the fact that they also provide routes near MRT stations, so commuters can switch from one mode of transport to another. Lastly, some of these buses are already electric, making them sustainable. And yet, they’re capable of travelling for over 120 kilometres per charge.

3. Taxis

Cabs are also available in Singapore, and they’re also a cost-effective mode of transport when you need to get somewhere quick but may not be the most accessible and cheapest option out there.

With cabs, commuters can travel longer distances compared to buses and trains if they only need to get somewhere fast outside the city. However, travelling with cabs can come with a surcharge, especially during late nights or during peak hours. The same rule applies when you take it from the airport and want to go back to town.

4. Rental Cars

Driving around Singapore can be a costly affair. Not only will you need to purchase a car, but you’ll also have to pay for petrol and parking fees. If you’re planning on doing some sightseeing or going down to Sentosa Island, renting a car might not be the best option.

However, if you’re commuting regularly, driving a car is the more convenient option, especially compared to switching from one mode of transport to another if you have a full day of work ahead.

In Singapore, it’s also compulsory for all vehicles to be serviced and tested every year or two, so you can be assured that they are safe to drive. Moreover, like in other cities or countries, you might need to purchase insurance.

Keep in mind, though, that while you can find plenty of car parks around the city-state that require a reservation and a monthly fee depending on the size of your vehicle.

5. Bikes

Over the years, more locals and tourists are riding their bicycles in Singapore for many reasons. One, bike lanes are popping up, including the Round Island Route, which covers at least 75 kilometres.

Two, they are incredibly cheap, and with the high cost of living in the city-state, they are an appealing mode of transport. They are also environmentally friendly and allow citizens to stay fit.

Remember, though, that not all areas in Singapore have bicycle lanes. Often, people pedal between their homes and train, bus, or interchange stations or around their town. They may also bring their bikes to designated cycling routes.

Obviously, Singapore is a small country. Nevertheless, it’s huge with regards to transportation options and development that people, including tourists, can choose from according to their convenience and needs.

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