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Is There Uber in Singapore? No, Uber is not available in Singapore. The company exited the market in 2018, selling its Southeast Asian operations to Grab, a regional competitor. Since then, Grab has dominated the ride-hailing scene in Singapore, offering a wide range of services from standard taxis to private cars and even bikes.

Singapore, a global financial hub known for its lush greenery, strict laws, and efficient public transport system, also has a competitive and innovative transportation sector. With Uber’s exit in 2018, the landscape for ride-hailing services saw significant changes, leading to the rise of other platforms eager to fill the gap left behind. This article explores the current state of ride-hailing services in Singapore, the availability of Uber alternatives, taxi services, and other modes of transportation within the city-state.

Is There Uber In Singapore?

cartoon of man ordering a taxi, a large phone shows the different options for different taxis
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After Uber withdrew from the Singapore market in 2018, Grab took over its operations and customer base, becoming the leading ride-hailing service in the country. The transition was part of a larger deal where Uber conceded its Southeast Asian operations to Grab in exchange for a significant stake in the company. This move was a strategic exit from a highly competitive market for Uber and allowed Grab to expand its services and user base in Singapore and beyond.

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Are There Other Ride-sharing Apps Like Uber in Singapore?

Set quick and efficient pickup service abstract concept vector illustration.
Image from FreePik

With Uber’s exit from Singapore, several ride-sharing and taxi-booking apps have stepped in to fill the void, offering a range of services from private cars to taxis and even motorcycle rides. Here are the main players in the Singapore ride-hailing market:

Grab

As the dominant ride-hailing app in Singapore following Uber’s exit, Grab offers a comprehensive range of services, including GrabCar for private rides, GrabTaxi for booking regular taxis, and GrabShare for carpooling options. It’s known for its reliability, extensive network of drivers, and promotional offers. Grab has also expanded its services to include food delivery (GrabFood) and digital payments (GrabPay).

Example fares:

  • Short Distance (e.g., within the city, around 5km): SGD 6 to SGD 10
  • Medium Distance (e.g., city to suburbs, around 10-15km): SGD 10 to SGD 20
  • Long Distance (e.g., across the island, 20+km): SGD 20 to SGD 40
  • From Changi Airport to City Center: Approximately SGD 20 to SGD 40, depending on the service type and time of day

Download Grab

Gojek

Originally from Indonesia, Gojek entered the Singapore market as a strong competitor to Grab. It offers similar services, including GoCar for private rides and GoTaxi for booking taxis. Gojek is appreciated for its competitive pricing and promotions. The app also provides other services such as food delivery (GoFood) and digital payments (GoPay).

Example fares:

  • Short Distance: SGD 5 to SGD 9
  • Medium Distance: SGD 10 to SGD 19
  • Long Distance: SGD 20 to SGD 35
  • From Changi Airport to City Center: Slightly cheaper or comparable to Grab, with fares around SGD 18 to SGD 35.

Download Gojek

TADA

TADA is a lesser-known but steadily growing ride-hailing service that operates in Singapore. It prides itself on fair practices for drivers, such as not taking commission fees, which can lead to slightly lower prices for riders. TADA offers services similar to its competitors, including private car rides and taxi bookings.

Example fares:

  • Short Distance: SGD 5 to SGD 8
  • Medium Distance: SGD 9 to SGD 18
  • Long Distance: SGD 18 to SGD 30
  • From Changi Airport to City Center: Comparable to Gojek, with fares typically ranging from SGD 18 to SGD 30.

Download TADA

Ryde

Ryde is a Singapore-based ride-hailing app that started with a focus on carpooling services but has since expanded to include private car hires (RydeX), taxis (RydeTAXI), and even pet-friendly rides (RydePET). It’s known for its community-driven approach and competitive pricing.

Example fares:

  • Short Distance: SGD 4 to SGD 8
  • Medium Distance: SGD 8 to SGD 16
  • Long Distance: SGD 16 to SGD 28
  • From Changi Airport to City Center: Generally in line with TADA and Gojek, with fares around SGD 17 to SGD 30.

These platforms offer a variety of transportation options, catering to different needs and preferences. Prices can vary based on demand, time of day, and specific service chosen, but they generally provide a cost-effective and convenient way to get around Singapore. Promotions and discounts are also frequently available, making ride-sharing an attractive option for both residents and visitors.

Download Ryde

Taxis in Singapore

ride share taxi app with taxi with backdrop of a city
Image by Freepik

Singapore boasts a reliable and extensive taxi service with several companies operating modern fleets across the island. Taxis are a popular choice for travelers seeking convenience, especially where public transport may not reach or during late-night hours when some services are reduced.

Are Taxis Cheap in Singapore?

Compared to some other major cities worldwide, taxis in Singapore offer a moderate cost. They are generally more expensive than public transportation options but can be cost-effective for groups or when traveling to areas not easily accessible by bus or MRT (Mass Rapid Transit).

How Much Do Taxis Cost in Singapore?

Taxi fares in Singapore are metered, and the cost depends on several factors, including the distance traveled, the time of day, and any applicable surcharges (e.g., peak hour, central business district, airport). A basic overview of taxi fares in Singapore is as follows:

  • Flag down fare: SGD 3.20 to SGD 3.90, depending on the taxi company.
  • Distance charges: SGD 0.22 for every 400 meters (up to 10 km), then SGD 0.22 for every 350 meters beyond 10 km.
  • Waiting charges: SGD 0.22 for every 45 seconds of waiting or less during the trip.
  • Peak hour surcharges: Vary, but can be around 25% of the metered fare.
  • Airport surcharge: Ranges from SGD 3 to SGD 5, depending on the time.

For example, a typical fare from Changi Airport to the city center (approximately 20 km) might range from SGD 20 to SGD 40, including surcharges.

Do Taxis Accept Credit Cards in Singapore?

Yes, most taxis in Singapore accept payment by credit card, but a processing fee (usually around 10% of the fare) may apply. Cash, NETS (local debit system), and mobile payments are also widely accepted.

How Do I Catch a Taxi in Singapore?

Taxis can be hailed directly on the street, picked up from designated taxi stands, or booked in advance through various taxi booking apps or telephone booking services. Some popular taxi companies include:

  • ComfortDelGro Taxi (including CityCab)
  • SMRT Taxis
  • TransCab
  • Premier Taxis
  • Prime Taxi

Are There Taxi Apps in Singapore?

Yes, several apps facilitate taxi bookings in Singapore, including:

  • ComfortDelGro Taxi Booking App: ComfortDelGro App
  • Grab: Offers taxi booking options alongside its private hire services.
  • Gojek: Also provides an option to book taxis through its platform.

Are Taxis Safe in Singapore?

Taxis in Singapore are generally very safe, with strict regulations governing drivers and vehicles. All taxis are metered, and drivers are required to follow a code of conduct, ensuring a high standard of service.

Common Taxi Scams in Singapore?

Taxi scams are rare in Singapore due to strict regulations and enforcement. However, as with any travel destination, it’s wise to be aware of your surroundings, the route you want to take (use GPS mapping where possible), and ensure the meter is running to avoid being overcharged.

Do I Need to Tip Taxi Drivers in Singapore?

Tipping is not a common practice in Singapore, and taxi drivers do not expect tips. However, passengers may choose to round up the fare to the nearest dollar as a gesture of appreciation.

Other Ways to Get Around Singapore

Bus and bus driver at a bus stop

Singapore’s efficient and comprehensive public transportation system offers several convenient options for getting around the city-state, making it easy to explore without relying solely on taxis or ride-hailing services.

MRT (Mass Rapid Transit)

The MRT is Singapore’s backbone of public transport, offering a fast, efficient, and affordable way to navigate the city. It covers most areas of interest, including residential and commercial districts, with trains running from about 5:30 AM to midnight daily.

  • Cost: Fares vary depending on distance but typically range from SGD 0.83 to SGD 2.08 for a single journey. Tourists can consider purchasing a Singapore Tourist Pass, offering unlimited travel for 1, 2, or 3 days, priced from SGD 10 to SGD 20.
  • More Information: Singapore MRT

Buses

The bus network in Singapore complements the MRT, reaching areas that are less accessible by train. Buses run frequently and are a cost-effective way to travel.

  • Cost: Like the MRT, bus fares are distance-based and range from SGD 0.59 to SGD 1.65. The same payment options apply, including the EZ-Link card and the Singapore Tourist Pass.
  • More Information: SBS Transit, SMRT Buses

Local Ferry Services

Singapore, being an island nation with close proximity to various smaller islands offers several ferry services for local destinations. These services provide a unique and scenic way to explore the Singapore.

  • Sentosa Island: While Sentosa is connected to the main island of Singapore by road, cable car, and a pedestrian boardwalk, there are no public ferry services directly to Sentosa. However, the island can be easily accessed via the Sentosa Express monorail or by walking.
  • Pulau Ubin: A small island off the northeastern coast of Singapore, Pulau Ubin is a step back in time to Singapore’s rural past and a popular spot for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Bumboats to Pulau Ubin depart from Changi Point Ferry Terminal.
    • Cost: Approximately SGD 3 per trip.
    • More Information: No advance booking is required for the bumboats, and they depart once there are 12 passengers.

Bicycles and E-Scooters

For short distances or exploring local neighborhoods, bicycles and e-scooters offer a convenient and eco-friendly alternative. Several companies operate dockless bike-sharing and e-scooter rental services accessible via smartphone apps.

  • Cost: Rates vary by provider but typically start at around SGD 1 for 30 minutes of use.
  • More Information: Look for apps like SG Bike, Anywheel, or Beam for rentals.

Walking

Singapore is an extremely walkable city, with well-maintained sidewalks, pedestrian crossings, and an abundance of green spaces. Many of the city’s attractions are located within walking distance of each other, especially in the downtown area.

Private Car Rentals

For those who prefer driving, car rental services are available, though it’s less common for short-term visitors due to the accessibility of public transport and the cost of parking and tolls.

  • Cost: Daily rental rates vary widely depending on the car model, starting from around SGD 50 per day.
  • More Information: Popular rental companies include Hertz, Avis, and local firms like Drive.SG.

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Each of these options provides a unique way to experience Singapore, catering to different preferences, budgets, and travel needs. Whether you’re exploring the city’s urban landscape or its natural reserves, Singapore’s transport infrastructure supports a smooth and enjoyable journey.

How Do I Get from the International Airport to the City Center?

Passengers with luggage in airport flat illustration
Image by pch.vector on Freepik

Changi Airport, Singapore’s main international gateway, is well-connected to the city center, offering several convenient and efficient transport options for travelers.

MRT (Mass Rapid Transit)

  • Service: The East-West Line connects Changi Airport to downtown Singapore.
  • Cost: Approximately SGD 2 to SGD 3, including the cost of a reusable EZ-Link card.
  • Travel Time: About 30 minutes to the city center.
  • More Information: Trains run from about 5:30 AM to 11:18 PM daily. The MRT station is located at Terminals 2 and 3.

Taxis

  • Service: Taxis are readily available at the taxi stands at the arrival levels of each terminal.
  • Cost: SGD 20 to SGD 40 to the city center, depending on the time of day and any applicable surcharges.
  • Travel Time: 20 to 30 minutes, depending on traffic conditions.
  • More Information: Taxis offer a direct and convenient way to reach your destination, especially if you’re traveling with luggage or in a group.

Private Hire Cars and Ride-hailing Apps

  • Service: Grab, Gojek, and other ride-hailing services operate at Changi Airport, offering pickup from designated points.
  • Cost: Similar to taxis, around SGD 20 to SGD 40 to the city center, depending on demand and service type.
  • Travel Time: Around 20 to 30 minutes.
  • More Information: It’s advisable to have the respective app installed and set up on your smartphone before arrival.

Airport Shuttle

  • Service: A shared shuttle service offers door-to-door transport from the airport to most downtown hotels.
  • Cost: SGD 9 per adult and SGD 6 per child.
  • Travel Time: Varies, depending on the number of stops, but generally within an hour.
  • More Information: This is a convenient option if you’re looking for a balance between cost and convenience.

Public Buses

  • Service: Public bus services 36/36A run from the airport to the city.
  • Cost: SGD 2.50, payable with an EZ-Link card or exact change in cash.
  • Travel Time: Around an hour to the city center.
  • More Information: Buses are a cost-effective option but may not be suitable if you have a lot of luggage.

WiFi Availability at Changi Airport

Changi Airport offers free WiFi throughout its terminals, allowing travelers to stay connected upon arrival. To connect, select the “_Changi Free WiFi” network, register with your mobile number, and receive an SMS access code. There are also free internet kiosks located around the terminals for those without mobile devices.

How to Travel Between Cities in the Region

Three passengers on a train reading books and tablets

Singapore’s strategic location in Southeast Asia makes it an excellent hub for exploring nearby countries and cities. Here’s how you can travel from Singapore to other key destinations in the region:

By Air

  • Service: Singapore Changi Airport serves as a major international gateway, with numerous airlines offering flights to cities across Asia and beyond.
  • Cost: Varies widely depending on destination, airline, and booking time. Budget airlines like AirAsia, Scoot, and Jetstar offer competitive fares for regional travel.
  • More Information: For the best deals, compare fares on airline websites or use travel aggregators like Skyscanner or Kayak.

By Bus

  • Service: Several bus companies operate cross-border services from Singapore to Malaysia and even Thailand. Popular routes include Singapore to Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Malacca.
  • Cost: Prices start from around SGD 20 for a one-way trip to Malaysia, depending on the service class and destination.
  • More Information: Online platforms like Bookaway are convenient for comparing schedules and booking tickets.

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By Train

  • Service: The Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) offers train services from Singapore to various destinations in Malaysia, including Kuala Lumpur and the northern regions.
  • Cost: Fares depend on the class and destination. A trip to Kuala Lumpur starts from around SGD 37 for a seat in the second class.
  • More Information: Tickets can be booked through the KTMB official website or at the train station.

By Ferry

  • Service: Ferries run from Singapore to several Indonesian islands, including Batam and Bintan, which are popular for short getaways.
  • Cost: Fares for a one-way trip start from around SGD 25, depending on the destination and ferry operator.
  • More Information: Operators like Batam Fast, Sindo Ferry, and Bintan Resort Ferries offer services to these islands, with tickets available online or at ferry terminals.

Tips for Regional Travel

  • Passports and Visas: Ensure your passport has at least six months of validity and check visa requirements for your destination.
  • Health Precautions: Stay updated on health advisories, especially for destinations with specific vaccination requirements or health alerts.
  • Currency Exchange: While Singapore dollars are widely accepted in some parts of Malaysia and Indonesia, it’s advisable to have local currency for smaller transactions and areas further from the border.

Traveling from Singapore to nearby cities and countries offers a chance to explore the rich diversity of Southeast Asia, from bustling metropolitan areas to serene beaches and historical towns.

Is There Uber Eats in Singapore?

Cartoon image of a man and his phone showing food delivery options

Uber Eats is not operational in Singapore. The service ceased operations in the region following Uber’s exit from Southeast Asia’s ride-hailing market in 2018, when it sold its business to Grab. Consequently, Uber Eats was also phased out and replaced by GrabFood, Grab’s own food delivery service.

Alternatives to Uber Eats in Singapore

Despite the absence of Uber Eats, Singapore’s food delivery market is vibrant and competitive, with several alternatives offering extensive coverage across the island, catering to a wide range of tastes and preferences. Here are the main food delivery services available in Singapore:

GrabFood

  • Overview: As part of the Grab ecosystem, GrabFood is one of the leading food delivery services in Singapore, offering a wide variety of food options from local hawker centres to upscale restaurants.
  • Website/App: GrabFood

Foodpanda

  • Overview: Foodpanda is another major player in the food delivery scene in Singapore, known for its pink branding and extensive partnership with restaurants and eateries across the country.
  • Website/App: Foodpanda

Deliveroo

  • Overview: Deliveroo focuses on providing premium food delivery services, partnering with mid-tier to high-end restaurants. It’s recognized for its fast delivery times and quality service.
  • Website/App: Deliveroo

Final Thoughts on Uber and Transportation in Singapore

While Uber’s departure from Singapore in 2018 marked the end of an era, it also paved the way for a dynamic and competitive transportation landscape. Singapore’s robust transport ecosystem, led by Grab and complemented by other ride-hailing services like Gojek, TADA, and Ryde, ensures that residents and visitors have a wealth of options for getting around the city efficiently and affordably.

Singapore’s commitment to innovation and convenience in transportation is evident in its extensive public transport network, including the MRT and buses, which are complemented by alternative modes of transport such as bicycles and e-scooters. The city’s taxi services continue to offer reliable and safe options for travelers, maintaining high standards of service and accessibility.

The absence of Uber Eats has not dampened the vibrant food delivery scene in Singapore, with services like GrabFood, Foodpanda, and Deliveroo ensuring that the city’s diverse culinary offerings are just a few taps away. These platforms cater to a wide range of tastes and preferences, underlining Singapore’s status as a food paradise.

In conclusion, Singapore’s transportation and food delivery services exemplify the city-state’s forward-thinking approach to urban mobility and convenience. Whether you’re commuting across the city, exploring its scenic islands, or enjoying the local cuisine from the comfort of your home, Singapore offers a seamless and enjoyable experience that sets a benchmark for cities worldwide.

If you have any more questions or need further information on traveling within Singapore or exploring its many services and attractions, feel free to ask. Safe travels!

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