Driving into the Future: Exploring Car-Sharing in Singapore's Evolving Landscape

"Discover the intricacies of car-sharing services in Singapore, pros and cons of leading operators, and the evolving landscape of Singapore's transportation choices. Explore how car-sharing transforms the way we perceive vehicle ownership in a dynamic and rapidly changing environment."


11/2/20233 min read

a row of cars parked on the side of a street
a row of cars parked on the side of a street

When the protagonist's ageing vehicle reached its tenth year, a decision was made to divest from car ownership, driven by the recognition of cars as depreciating assets and the desire to make prudent financial choices. This individual, committed to making cost-effective decisions, refrained from driving, choosing instead to explore the world of car sharing in Singapore. This article delves into the pros and cons of car-sharing services, comparing major operators and their pricing structures.

Car-sharing, similar to the concept of SG Bike and Obike, involves searching for a nearby vehicle, unlocking it through a card or mobile app, and using it to reach a desired destination. On the surface, car-sharing presents an attractive proposition, particularly for individuals who have no need for a driver's license other than for age verification. However, a closer examination, which includes subscription fees, registration fees, and fuel costs, reveals that car-sharing can be nearly as expensive as using ride-sharing services like Grab or traditional taxis.

The cost analysis is provided for various car-sharing operators in Singapore offering hourly car rentals, including Tribecar, Car Club, DriveLah, BlueSG, and GetGo. Each operator has its unique pricing structure, and costs can vary significantly based on factors such as the time of day and weekend surcharges.

Car sharing is practical for individuals with significant cargo to transport or who need to visit multiple locations within a specific time frame. Moreover, it offers benefits like sustainability (in the case of electric vehicles), driving to Malaysia (for some operators), and accommodating young drivers or those travelling with pets. However, it's crucial to consider certain aspects before diving into a car-sharing arrangement. Applicants may need to wait a few days for membership approval, as operator requirements include driver's license and record review. Additionally, car-sharing operators typically provide basic insurance, and users are responsible for Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) and parking costs. Operators may have specific service locations, so individuals should check if they have cars available in their area. Most car-sharing services require a security deposit during the membership period.

A detailed breakdown of car-sharing providers in Singapore is presented, and key information:

1. Tribecar: Tribecar offers various rates and has a broad fleet, allowing individuals to drive to Malaysia. It is suitable for younger drivers, but new drivers may face additional surcharges and deposits. Customers must return the vehicle to its original parking spot.

2. Car Club by Tribecar: Car Club, now part of the Tribecar group, offers a range of vehicles and has specific requirements for drivers, including age and experience. Similar to Tribecar, cars need to be returned to their original parking locations.

3. Drive Lah: Drive Lah functions as a car-sharing platform connecting individuals with car owners who share their vehicles. It offers a variety of vehicles, typically in better condition and cleaner, albeit with a more tedious sign-up process. Users should be responsible for maintaining the cars' cleanliness.

4. BlueSG: BlueSG stands out with its electric car-sharing concept. While it eliminates fuel costs and is environmentally friendly, its per-minute rates can be optimal for one-way trips. BlueSG cars must be returned to designated parking sites making it unique towards other car-sharing platforms.

5. GetGo Car Sharing: GetGo prides itself on being fuss-free, with no membership or sign-up fees. It offers competitive pricing structures and includes the cost of fuel. GetGo is pet-friendly, but like other services, vehicles must be returned to their original parking locations.

In summary, car sharing in Singapore presents a range of options, each with its advantages and drawbacks. Prospective users should carefully consider their specific needs and preferences when selecting a car-sharing service. The choice may vary depending on factors such as pricing, vehicle types, convenience, and environmental concerns. It's essential to research and compare options to determine the best fit for individual circumstances.