Getting Around Singapore
The $100,000 Question - Need A Car At All?
The big question you will face is: can you survive getting around Singapore without a car.
And the simple answer is: yes, you can.
We did it for about a year with three kids and the autistic cat. A lot of our friends still do it and these are families, couples and singles.
In all honesty, based on the prices for cars, it isn't even an option for many people. And budget-wise, you will never spend as much money on cab fares, trains and buses as you will in buying a car.
As I write this in April 2012, Certificates of Entitlement - or COEs - are reaching SGD 91,000. That's the money you pay just to have the right to drive that vehicle you have set your eyes on, without the additional taxes slapped on, or your usual maintenance and gas.
Which takes it all down to the core question for getting around Singapore: convenience or luxury.
We Finally Caved In
In the end, we did buy a used car. There were a couple of reasons:
- it made grocery shopping for a family of five so much easier
- with three kids, we were constantly catching cabs between appointments, sports and school
- taxis and taxi drivers can be a joy or a nightmare
- we could transport equipment and friends wherever
Looking back though, we most enjoy the simple freedom of having the car at our disposal whenever we had the whim to do something.
Like I said, cars are really expensive. That doesn't stop the locals from buying them like crazy, though, especially when they have the cash.
I have rarely seen so many luxury sedans and high-end sport missles barreling down a highway at 90km/h - the local speed limit - in one place.
Guess it's true that once you hit 50 and have your millions, you gotta show the world what a cool dude you are....
Anyway, have a look inside for getting around Singapore when you
- are not 50
- don't have millions
- and don't need to be a cool dude.
Using taxis in Singapore
Cheap and cheerful transport by train and bus.
Buying a car in Singapore.
Getting your driving license converted.
Finally, you could think about the fairly inexpensive option of getting a motorcycle or perhaps consider
Getting around Singapore by Car Sharing.
But pshaaawwww - how would that look - getting around while doing something for the environment and saving money at the same time.