Developed countries in Asia have an efficient mass transportation systems and EZ-link cards are convenient ways of navigating these networks. Japan has its famous Japan Rail Pass while other countries promote their train passes. Since Singapore is a major tourism destination in Southeast Asia, they also created their own, the Singapore Tourist Pass. The card covers major transportation networks helping tourists explore Singapore the easier way around.
On my first attempt to explore Singapore, I availed a Singapore Tourist Pass and I can vouch for its convenience and the savings that come with it. Most friends I know who’ve been to Singapore avail Singapore’s EZ-Link card. If you’re familiar with Hong Kong’s Octopus Card, the card plays the same role. It’s a stored-value and contactless payment system that enables everyone to travel around the country easier and cheaper than the standard rates.
Before your Singapore trip, you need to decide whether to avail the normal EZ-Link card or get the Singapore Tourist Pass. This will depend on your itinerary and how your days will be spent in the country. This post will not help you decide what to avail of the two cards but rather convince you to have a Singapore Tourist Pass with a jam-packed and limited Singapore itinerary.
What is a Singapore Tourist Pass?
Just what we have mentioned in the first few paragraphs, the Singapore Tourist Pass is similar to the EZ-Link card. The major difference is that you can have unlimited travel on Singapore’s comprehensive bus system and MRT and LRT lines for the duration of its validity. Singapore Tourist Pass is available on 1-day, 2-day, or 3-day variants.
The card should be utilized on consecutive days so it is suggested to plan ahead when to start using the card during your stay. Please note that the pass doesn’t have a full 24-hour validity. Coverage of the pass, say the 1-day pass, ends at midnight or depending on the operating hours of the services.
Why You Need a Singapore Tourist Pass?
The range of fares on the Singapore MRT runs from SGD0.77 to SGD2.02. If you availed the 3-day Singapore Tourist Pass, it will cost you SGD6.66 per day. This amount will be worth it if you’ll be taking at least 6-7 MRT rides per day. If you’re familiar with the attractions you’re visiting and the MRT stations, getting an EZ-Link Card might be more affordable. But having the card won’t scare you to get lost because you can just simply head to the nearest bus or train station to go back on track.
Where to Buy the Singapore Tourist Pass?
You can get the Singapore Tourist Pass from selected TransitLink Ticketing Office. Here are the stations and their operating hours.
- Changi Airport (8AM – 4PM and 5PM – 9PM, daily)
- Bayfront (12PM -3:45PM and 4:45PM – 8PM on Sat, Sun, and Public Holidays)
- Raffles Place (8AM – 9PM on Mon – Fri, 8AM – 5PM on Sat)
- City Hall (9AM – 9PM, daily)
- Bugis (10AM – 9PM, daily)
- Lavender (12PM – 3:45PM and 4:45PM – 7:30PM, daily)
- Tanjong Pagar (12PM – 2PM and 5:30PM – 7:30PM on Weekdays and Saturdays)
- Chinatown (8AM – 4PM and 5PM – 9PM, daily)
- Clarke Quay (12PM – 2PM, 5:30PM – 7:30PM on Weekdays and Saturdays)
- Farrer Park (12PM – 3:45PM, 4:45PM – 7:30PM, daily)
- Harbourfront (8AM – 4PM, 5PM – 9PM, daily)
- Orchard (8AM – 9PM, daily)
- Ang Mo Kio (8AM – 9PM, daily)
- Woodlands (8AM – 9PM, daily)
- Kranji (12:30PM – 3:45PM, 4:45PM – 7:30PM on Weekdays and Saturdays)
- Jurong East (12PM – 3:45PM, 4:45PM – 7:30PM, daily)
Where to Refund the Card Deposit?
All versions of the Singapore Tourist Pass are sold with a refundable SGD10 deposit. You can return the card to the mentioned TransitLink offices above. The deposit can only be refunded within 5 days after the expiration of the Singapore Tourist Pass. Failing to do so can forfeit your SGD10-deposit. However, if you’ll be purchasing another pass within this 5-day allowance, you can extend the refund period of your card. For more info, please refer to Singapore Tourist Pass website.
Before I visited Singapore and completing the draft of my itinerary, I tried computing the fares on the transportation I needed to take. Checking the fare calculator of bus and train routes, I found out that availing the Singapore Tourist Pass is more convenient and affordable for my itinerary. Don’t miss the premier spots of Singapore such as the stunning supertrees of Gardens by the Bay, and amazing rides of Universal Studios Singapore. You can also include the shopping district of Orchard, heritage districts, parks ,and gardens. Getting one is advised if you’ll be excessively using the bus and trains on exploring the sights and attractions of Singapore.