In yet another complaint about the rising cost of taxis and/or driving.
“Singapore has one of the best transport systems in Asia,” they say. “You don’t need a car.”
I would have agreed if not for the taxi fare hike this week. If you’re a taxiphile who lives in Bishan and who works in the city, you’re going to be forking out about $450 a month just getting to and from work. And that’s if you’re lucky enough to get a cab.
You can take the bus and the MRT for leisure activities, of course. But when you’ve got tons of Christmas goodies or weekly groceries to lug home, taxis are the best option.
With bus, taxi and MRT fares rising, it looks like you have to set aside about $500 a month in transport expenses — which is how much my little car costs me in COE repayments, season parking fees, normal parking, ERP fees and fuel when it is running well.
But it’s not just cost alone that’s making me stick stubbornly to my wheels. The other reason is convenience. Singapore may have an efficient public transport system, but you can’t deny that there are some places that are woefully unconnected.
I sputtered when I read that this person lives in Bishan and works in the city, yet insists that she has to either drive or take a cab to work. It takes 20 minutes on the MRT from Bishan to the city. There is just no excuse. Your tons of ‘Christmas groceries’ are not purchased on your daily commute. Your ‘weekly groceries’ are purchased once a week by definition. And there is no reason why you should have to get groceries from outside of Bishan. There’s even a huge shopping mall there, for fuck’s sake.
The writer goes on to say that she likes to go to far-flung places like Changi Village and Kranji on the weekends. Granted, getting to those places by public transport is a pain in the ass. But she’d save a darn lot in fuel costs if she restricted her car usage to driving to those places on weekends instead of driving to work every day. She could then just get a ‘red plate’ car that can get her a $17,000 COE rebate and an $800 discount on road tax.
There is no right to drive. If you pollute, don’t complain.