Leasing a car in Singapore gives you the freedom to gather your kids, pets or golf clubs and hit the road at your own leisure. However, with the COE (Certificate of Entitlement) price currently so high – close to $100,000 for Category A car as we write this – why buy when you can grab a rental car? Especially if you’re not sure how long you’ll be staying. Then it’s just a matter of turning up the music, blasting the air-con and driving in Singapore to spots you mightn’t otherwise explore! Here are some readers’ experiences.
BOLT Car Leasing
My wife and I moved to Singapore in August 2022, and we’re renting a Kia Seltos from BOLT Car Leasing. We picked the car as the price was in our range and the spacious 4×4 offered us enough comfort and practicality to do all the things we wanted. It’s been great on long road trips through Malaysia, for example. It also holds my golf clubs easily and is perfect for buzzing around Singapore.
The BOLT team have been great. I did a lot of research before coming to Singapore and their prices were great but their service even better. Their representative Jeannie has been available via WhatsApp and did an amazing job of helping me out when I first arrived in the country.
We love being independent and moving around under our own steam. We also wanted to live in an area by the water, so I knew I would have a commute to work. That’s why a car was essential for us.
I enjoy driving in Singapore. I spent five years driving in Bangkok; Singapore is much easier than that! The roads are smooth and the traffic is light.
As for a dream car, before we left the UK, we had to sell our beloved Toyota Landcruiser. I’m still sad about that and would love to be able to have another one in the future.
Peta and Mark Haworth, British; Child: Fraser
We’ve lived in Singapore for a year, and we’ve just recently started leasing a Toyota Corolla Altis from Carzuno. Having spent the last year using public transport, which is great here, we opted to lease a car as our son is now on his long summer school holiday and attending camps all over Singapore. A car is easier and the Toyota was in the right price range, size and so on, for what we needed. The fact that you can lease it for just a month is great, as there’s no long commitment if it’s just needed for the short term. The car is easy to drive, fuel-efficient and so far very reliable.
We love the fact that the car rental price at Carzuno includes everything and there are no hidden extras as you go through the process. The concierge service is done via a bot/messenger on the website, so all questions are answered really quickly. Better yet, the car arrived just seven hours after I ordered it!
Singapore isn’t a bad place to drive – it’s easier here than in London! Everything is well signposted and quite easy to find. My dream car used to be an Aston Martin DB9. These days, it’s one that is reliable and economical!
We moved to Singapore at the end of January, so just under six months ago, and we decided to make a Mercedes-Benz GLB200 from Vincar our rental car. It’s the perfect size for our growing family, along with having a useful third row when our extended family visits us.
Even though Singapore has excellent public transportation, living in Sentosa with a toddler meant that we required a car for our many trips into the city to run errands, drop him off at nursery and make it to work on time.
We were searching for a GLB or a similar-sized vehicle, and there was quite a disparity of costs among rental agencies for the same car, which surprised me. Even though Vincar offers ultra-luxury cars for the top of the market, they were the most reasonably priced – by a significant margin. This coupled with offering excellent service and flexibility through our dealings with Lilian meant that Vincar was an easy choice.
With a young family, driving in Singapore is by far the fastest and most efficient way to travel around. Parking has never been difficult to find near to our destinations, which is especially helpful during Singapore’s frequent rain events! It’s also very easy to drive here since they limit the number of cars on the road. It means that “rush hour” is not nearly as bad as in most other cities we have lived in.
Our family’s dream car is a Ferrari Purosangue, but perhaps in another lifetime!
We have lived in Singapore for almost four years and have changed cars a couple of times. Our latest model is a Mercedes GLB200 SUV, which we lease from ComfortDelGro Rent-A-Car. We prefer the SUV because of the height getting in and out and flexibility with the seating arrangements.
When we first moved to Singapore, I was not sure how long we would stay so leasing just made more sense. Now the price of the COE simply makes it too unreasonable to buy a car.
I have found ComfortDelGro very supportive and the staff very friendly and responsive. They have a large fleet to choose from and flexible contract conditions that take into account what expats need. The insurance package, and 24×7 roadside assistance, including travel into Malaysia, are huge benefits built into the leasing package. Plus, they have scheduled maintenance and servicing and have been great at helping me deal with tyre punctures because I drive through industrial areas regularly.
Although public transportation is excellent in Singapore and there are pet transportation options available, having our own vehicle has been liberating. And driving in Singapore is easy!
As boring as it sounds, my personal mission is to drive an electric vehicle next. However, having spent a few years in Dubai with supercars and luxury brands all around, my wife has clearly zeroed in on Bentley as her favourite brand!
Evergreen Rent A Car
Kevin and Jessica Tibble, British; Children: Ava and Sam
“We were in Hong Kong for eight years before moving to Singapore and have been here for nearly two years.
I’m used to driving in London and Hong Kong so driving in Singapore is very easy. The roads are well maintained and signposts are clear. I’ve never had trouble finding a place to park and it’s usually not expensive. Just don’t rely on Google maps as it often takes you on strange routes!
About 18 months ago, we leased a new Toyota Vios from Evergreen. We chose it as we wanted reliability and we didn’t want to spend a huge amount every month. The other car rental consideration was boot space; we knew we’d be using the car for days out so it would have to fit scooters, bicycles, picnic blankets and all the stuff you need for a family adventure.
The team at Evergreen are responsive, helpful and kind, and always ensure the car is in excellent condition. Any issues are dealt with quickly, efficiently and made as easy as possible for us. We’ve been really impressed.
Having a car makes Singapore instantly more accessible and gives us flexibility of diverting to a new park on the way home or going to the Zoo on a whim. We’ve been able to travel all over the island without having to worry about whether we’ll find a taxi at a particular time to get back. It’s also so much safer for the kids to travel in fixed car seats.
Our family’s dream car is a BMW Grand Tourer, but for me, it’s an Aston Martin!
This article first appeared in the August 2023 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase the latest issue or subscribe, so you never miss a copy!