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Car Rental and Road Guidelines in Singapore

Updated on November 13, 2012

Driving in Singapore

If you are a traveler on a business trip or on holiday with your family with an international license, once you have landed safely on Singapore’s Changi International Airport, you might want to rent a car to drive around and take in the sights and sounds of the tiny city state. While hiring a car can be as simple as getting to the nearest rent-a-car service kiosk in the airport itself, there are several tips that might come in handy to be found in this article.

Rent a car in Singapore

Before you go about renting your vehicle, there are some driving guidelines and offhanded rules to be followed while you are driving on Singapore roads. A bulk of the roads on the island is mainly winding through residential areas and business districts. While there are speed limit signs available, they are few and far between, traditionally, the speed limit on these densely populated areas is around 50 km/hr or about 30 m/hr. Highways or expressways, as they are called in Singapore are generally interlinked with one another forming a huge motorway linked throughout the whole country. The speed limit on the expressway is generally 90km/hr or about 60m/hr.

Singapore Road Map

Car Hire / Car Rental

Car Rentals in Singapore
Car Rentals in Singapore

While driving in Singapore, you will require a cashless card system with a card aptly named Cashcard. These cashcards are to be placed in an IU (In-Vehicle Unit) system placed near the driver’s side of the dashboard in all Singapore registered vehicles. With the Cashcard placed in the IU unit, you can now drive through the various Electronic Road Pricing or ERP gantries located around the country’s business district. Vehicles passing through the ERP gantries during peak hours are charged around SGD1 and up to SGD2 depending on the time your vehicle passed through the gantry. Cashcards are also used to pay parking fees at shopping malls throughout the island so when you rent your vehicle, make sure you ask for a Cashcard as well.

The driving etiquette in Singapore is fiery and less forgiving as with most other developed or quickly-developing countries in Asia. This correlates with the hectic lifestyle and fast paced life of Singaporeans and their urge to go about their lives in a timely and quick manner. While this may lead to less desirable driving habits like frequent lane changing and excessive use of horn, the roads in Singapore are smooth and safe to drive and as long as proper driving techniques are observed, you will find that driving around Singapore is the fastest way to get from one place to another.

This brings back to the car rental service at the airport. The two main competitors vying for top rental service is the Avis Car Rental service and Hertz Car Rental. Avis offers affordable insured rentals as low as SGD70 daily. Avis also has a wide range of different vehicles to choose from, suiting to your exact needs. Avis vehicles are also placed with an in-build GPS so getting your way around Singapore will not be a problem. A treat for Avis customers is that you can rent a car in Singapore, drive across the Causeway to Malaysia and return the car in Malaysia, this offers extreme convenience if you have to fly off from Malaysia.

Hertz Car Rental is available worldwide and is the assured name for car rentals globally. Situated across every inhabited continent in the world, you can trust Hertz for the ultimate in car rental, its insurance and every other whim that goes to car rental overseas. With Hertz, you can also pick a vehicle up from the airport and return it in Malaysia, or even Thailand. It is indeed convenient and easy, at budgeted prices.

If you are looking for more affordable deals, look up Google for local rental deals available online. While some of these dealerships do not offer premium service like GPS or in-built DVD players, they offer some of the cheapest rental fees island wide.

Once you have rented your desired vehicle, have fun driving all over the island and drive safe!


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