Category Archives: Car Rental

Car rental business up by 25-30% this Lunar New Year

The car rental business is up this Lunar New Year season. Industry players said that compared to the same period last year, it has gone up 25 to 30 per cent.

Rental cars are a popular option to ferry family and friends this festive season.

K K Ho, general manager of Popular Rent A Car, said: “We figured it is because of the recovery of the economy and also because of the sudden rise in COE, which (are) some reasons why the buyers, some of those who find it too expensive to buy a car, world prefer to rent a car instead.”

Some companies said their car rental fleet was booked way ahead this year.

But the downside to the high demand is that prices are being jacked up by at least 20 per cent across the industry.

Customers however do not seem to mind the extra cost, as long as they can get their hands on a set of hired wheels.

One customer, Esther Loo, said: “The rental fee is kind of higher this year. But I think it is is still more economical because car prices are high due to the increase in COEs.”

Meanwhile, unlike mass market vehicles, demand for cars such as Ferraris and Lamborghinis has been more or less constant compared to the previous year.

Chris Cheah, operations manager at Luxe Car Rental, said: “These cars cater to a very niche clientele and not only that; during the Chinese New Year period, people go visiting a lot. So these cars are not very practical, you can’t really carry a lot of people and a lot of stuff. You can’t park in a lot of car parks, so I do not see a big difference in the demand.”

However, sales of such cars have spiked with more Singaporeans getting affluent.

Luxe Rental, the first car rental company in Singapore to offer these high-end cars, said it expects demand in future to grow in tandem. Thus, it is looking at increasing its fleet to meet any increase in future demand.

Fewer people taking up driving lessons

The number of people taking up lessons to get their driving licences is estimated to have dipped by 30 per cent between the period from January to September last year, and the same period the year before.

At least one driving centre has, in recent months, downsized its fleet of cars because of the dip in enrolment.

more info

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The rising cost of purchasing a car and Singapore’s declining birth rate are some possible reasons for the decline, say transport analysts and driving instructors.

Between January and September last year, 44,700 provisional driving licences (PDLs) were issued by the Traffic Police. The number stood at 77,000 for the 2009 calendar year. In 2008, 70,400 PDLs were issued.

Singapore Night Driving Safety Guide

Driving at night can be an enjoyable activity, without the hot sun and heavy traffic you see in the day. However, driving at night has its own risks too. I’ve compiled some of the key points to take note while driving at night.

Night Driving Danger

There are fewer car accidents at night due to the fewer cars in the road. However, due to less traffic, drivers tend to travel at high speeds and this increases the rate of fatality. The major causes of night accidents are exhaustion, lost of focus, drink driving and reduced visibility. Low light level also reduces depth perception and can cause delayed reflex actions.

Night Vision

Our eyes take time to adapt to brightly-lit places. It can take up to 30 minutes before our eyes function at 80% efficiency. Short-sightedness and night-blindness would further affect night vision.

When driving at night, glance around at different distances and focus on objects on the edge of your headlight beam. Refrain from focusing at a single distance as this increases eye fatigue. A poorly-lit object is easiest to see if you focus slightly to one side of it. Peripheral vision is less affected by poor light than central vision.

Watch your Speed!

Never drive beyond your range of vision. Singapore is generally well lit at night with plenty of street lamps. However, if you are driving with low or dipped beams you must reduce your speed commensurably. Following distances should also be increased, and the car ahead should be kept in the far limit of light from a dipped beam.

Don’t blind other drivers

Always dip your headlights before an approaching car comes within range. If the other driver fails to realize you are approaching, flick the beam back to high for an instant before dipping it again. Do not keep the high beam on – having two blinded drivers instead of one just doubles the risk. When approaching a car traveling in the opposite direction on a right-hand bend, remember to dip the beam early. Otherwise it will sweep across the curve and blind the other driver. Conversely, on a left-hand turn your headlights shine away from approaching traffic. However, it is good road manners to always dip your lights when another motorist approaches.

Point your headlights the right way

Headlights should be adjusted periodically, especially when your car is loaded more heavily than usual – this adjustment can be done at a garage. Having passengers in the back seat or heavy items in the boot can cause a dipped beam to shine too far ahead. This has the double disadvantage of dazzling oncoming drivers and failing to properly light the road. Always remember to reconfigure the beams when driving with a normal load again. Likewise, always adjust your tyre pressure before loading your car before holiday traveling.

Adapted from Robert Wood’s Article

Conversion of Foreign Driving Licence

Any driver with foreign driving licence may apply for conversion to a Singapore driving licence to drive the equivalent class of motor vehicle, but the particular class of licence cannot be one that was granted automatically without test and on the merit of attaining of another licence, eg a motorcycle licence granted with class 3 licence without going through a test that is practised in some countries.

Singaporeans and Permanent Residents

Singaporeans and Permanent Residents may convert a foreign driving licence that they have obtained overseas while residing in that foreign country over a period of one year or more for valid reasons such as study or work.

New PRs who already have a 5-year Singapore driving licence will have to replace it with a lifetime driving licence that reflects their new NRIC number.

Foreigners

A foreigner above 18 years of age and holding a Work Pass/Dependent Pass/Student Pass may drive in Singapore with a valid class 3, 3A or 2B foreign licence, for a period of not more than 12 months. A Singapore driving licence is required after 12 months. Those on short term social visit may drive with their foreign licence for up to 12 months each time they enter into Singapore . For licence not written in English language, an International Driving Permit or translation is required as explained below.

Please note that Work Pass holders may not drive for work-related purposes unless the occupation stated in the Work Pass is “Driver” or permission has been granted by the Controller of Work Pass. If you do so, your Work Pass may be revoked and you are liable to be prosecuted for an offence under the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act.

For more information on Work Pass restrictions, please visit http://www.mom.gov.sg/publish/momportal/en/communities/work_pass.html

Classes of driving licence that may be converted

Foreign licence conversion is only granted for class 2B and class 3 qualified driving licences. Learner driving licence may not be converted.

Those who wish to obtain a class 4 and/or class 5 licence need to go through training and a prescribed practical test before they can obtain the Singapore class 4 or 5 licence. No direct conversion is granted for these heavy vehicle licences.

Conversion for a higher capacity or open category motorcycle licence is normally not granted unless there are documentary proof of training, testing, ownership of bigger motorcycle and insurance policy indicating that you have gone through proper training and testing regime and have had at least one year riding experience on the road.

Conversion procedure

In order to convert your foreign licence to a Singapore driving licence, you are required to pass the Basic Theory Test (BTT). Overseas theory test results are not admissible for consideration.

You may book for a BTT in person at any of the 3 driving schools. On passing the BTT you may then proceed to apply for conversion at the Traffic Police Driving Test Center counters in person, with the relevant documents. The 3 Traffic Police Driving Test Centers are co-located with the 3 driving schools. Their addresses are:

* Ang Mo Kio Driving Test CentreĀ  ( http://www.ssdcl.com.sg/ ) at 3 Ang Mio Kio St 62 Industrial Park 3 Singapore 569139.
* Bukit Batok Driving Test Centre, ( http://www.bbdc.sg ) at 815 Bukit Batok West Ave 5 Singapore 659085.
* Kampong Ubi Test Centre ( http://www.cdc.com.sg/users/homepage/index.asp ) at 205, Ubi Ave 4 Singapore 408805.

Please bring along the following documents where applicable, when applying for conversion of licence:

* Passport and NRIC/Entry Permit/Employment Pass/Dependant Pass/Social Visit Pass/Work Permit
* Valid Qualified Foreign Driving Licence
* Processing fee of $50 (Cash, Cashcard and Nets Only)
* Matt finish passport-size colour photograph with white background, eyes looking straight and both ears and eyebrow visible in the photograph. There should be no headgear worn unless normally worn for religious purpose, and glasses worn should not be tinted.
* For Malaysian licence holders, an extract from JPJ Malaysia showing information of your driving record and licence information
* For Singaporeans studying overseas for one year or more, please produce proof of stay in the country, e.g. educational transcripts or Letter of Acceptance by the educational institution and the relevant student visa in the passport.
* For Singaporeans employed overseas, please produce Income Tax Returns or supporting documents from employers and the relevant employment visa in the passport.

Driving licence not in English language

For a foreign driving licence that is not in English language, you are required to have an International Driving Permit in addition to the foreign driving licence. If an International Driving Permit is not available, an official translation of your driving licence in English is required. You may obtain translation from the relevant Embassy, High Commission, the Singapore Subordinate Court or the Singapore High Court. Translation is not required for licence issued by Brunei , Indonesia and Malaysia .

Foreign Driving licence that expires with the expiry of a foreign visa

If you hold a driving licence that expires with the expiry of a foreign visa, you are required to obtain a written extract from the licence issuing authority of the country that your licence was issued. The extract should show the passing date, date of issue of your licence, the class of licence attained and your driving record.

You have to register for the Basic Theory Test within 3 months from the date you return to Singapore so that your conversion may be granted subsequently.

Additional Documents

Where the authenticity of a driving licence is in question, you may be asked to produce other documents for further verification. Such documents may including extract from the licence issuing authority that issued your licence and endorsed by a notary public.

Drivers of age 65 and above

If you are 65 years old and above, you need to be certified fit to drive by a Singapore registered medical practitioner. The prescribed form for the medical certification can be obtained at all Traffic Police Driving Test Centre counters. Application for conversion has to be accompanied by a favourable medical report that is complete.

If you have an existing medical condition or physical disability that may render you unfit to drive in Singapore under our law, you will be asked to obtain a confirmation of your fitness to drive at any of the hospitals below.

(1) Alexandra Hospital
(2) Changi General Hospital
(3) KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital
(4) National University Hospital
(5) Singapore National Eye Centre

(6) Singapore General Hospital
(7) Tan Tock SengHospital

(8) National Cancer Centre
(9) National Dental Centre

(10) National Heart Centre
(11) National Neuroscience Institute

(12) National Skin Centre
(13) Institute of Mental Health/Woodbridge Hospital

You may be required to undergo further assessment by our driving testers to confirm that you are fit to drive in Singapore .

Displaying of P-plate

You are required to display the P-plate sign on your vehicle if the issue date of your foreign licence is less than 1 year. You may stop displaying it after the 1 year period like new Singapore licence holders.

Drivers Improvement Point System (DIPS)

In the form that you submitted during the application for conversion of your foreign licence, you have affirmed that you have been informed that your licence will be revoked if you accumulate more than 12 demerit points within a 12 months period from the date of issue of your licence.

You will have to sit for all the prescribed driving theory and practical tests one year after the revocation in order to regain a new driving licence.

Source: http://driving-in-singapore.spf.gov.sg/services/Driving_in_Singapore/Information/drivinglicence/conversion.htm

Speed Cameras in Singapore

Traffic Police employ the usage of speed cameras to ensure that traffic safety is not violated. This article will provide you with the locations of such speed cameras, which could be stationary, or installed as temporary checkpoints. Usually there are traffic signs to warn you of the presence of speed cameras.

For people who rent cars and received traffic summons, some companies would impose an additional charge for extra administrative work.

Stationary Speed Cameras

This is how a speed camera looks like:

Speed Camera

According to a forumer at SgForums (see Post):

– Upper Serangoon Road (Morning 9am-11am) – VERIFIED
– Farrer Road / Adam Road (Morning 10am onwards)
– East Coast Highway, after Bayshore Exit (After 5pm) – VERIFIED
– Tunnel between Bartley Road and Braddell Road under Upper Serangoon Flyover
– Braddell Road seen on the long pedestrain bridge near SPH
– West Coast Highway before the new MacDonalds
– TPE both direction under the Tampines Bridge. – VERFIED
– Tampines Ave 10 Stretch. (That ROAD 60 km/h limit.) – VERIFIED
– Along Jln Boon Lay, from AYE towards Jurong Point, at junction of Chin Bee Dr.(50 km/h limit)
– Clementi Ave 6, from PIE – AYE, just before entering the underpass, at the traffic light

junction of Clementi Loop. (60 km/h limit)
– Road along Orchid Country Club ? VERIFIED

Mobile Speed Camera / Volvo Sightings / Spot checks
1) Tanjong Katong Flyover – VERIFIED
2) Telok Blangah Viaduct. Flyover over Telok Blangah Road along world trade centre.

(near carribean condo)
3) Upper Changi Road, at a secluded lobang opp Singapore Expo. Blue Police van with camera

taking through van’s side window – VERIFIED
4)Hougang Ave 3 towards Ang Mo kio, below the flyover
5)Upper serangoon road, opposite Serangoon Sec Sch, towards Sengkang
6)TPE just after Tampines Ave 10 exit (under the bridge)
7)Jalan Boon Lay towards AYE (Near Chartered Industries of Singapore, Jurong Point)
CoolLentor Ave
9)Clementi Ave 6
10)Old upper Thomson road, going towards Lornie Road/Toa Payoh/Braddell direction
11)Bartley Road/Braddell road (opp old outram instiute) before underpass – VERIFIED
12)Pasir Panjang Road (between the wholesale market & PSA Gate 5)
13)Gambas Avenue towards Woodlands
14)Mandai road – VERIFIED
15)Tampines Road adjacent to Paya Lebar airbase – VERTIFIED
16)SLE joining CTE (under the bridge)
17)TPE Sengkang exit (under the bridge)
1CoolKJE (Along road shoulder, near new military camp)
19)KJE Choa Chu Kang exit. (under the bridge) – VERIFIED
20)SLE towards Woodlands Ave 2 (under the bridge or after bends) – VERIFIED

BMW/Volvo Sightings
1)East Coast F1 car park
2)TPE leading to Sengkang/Punggol – VERIFIED
3)AMK ave 5 leading to Sengkang.
4)AYE (Jln Ahmad Ibrahim near to Jurong Bird Park) – VERIFIED
5)SLE near Yio Chu Kang – VERIFIED

Spot Checks / Roadblocks
1)Fort Road exit – VERIFIED
2)Loyang road
3)Yishun Dam
4)Robertson Quay towards Havelock Road (Near Liquid room) – VERIFIED
5)TPE (SLE direction) Hougang exit, at the HUGE bend (sat nights usually) Speed Camera –
6)Bedok reservoir Exit from PIE – VERIFIED
7)Bedok Reservoir Rd(near SAFRA) – VERIFIED
CoolBefore CTE from MS
9)PIE exit to Science Centre.
10)Lorine Road exit towards Bishan
11)St.Nicholas Sec School outside the gate(The Downslope leading all the way to bishan park)
12)ECP Marine Parade Exit
13)Bt Panjang Ring road (almost once a week)
14)PIE exit to Science Centre.

Drive Safely.