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5 Tips to Get a Driving Licence in Singapore



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Thinking of learning to drive? Here’s a quick guide to help you decide on which driving lessons suit you and your budget. We weigh in on the driving centre versus private lessons debate with a full breakdown of costs for both. We also give you a practical step-by-step guide on what you need to do to ace that driving test and get that coveted driving licence!

Be warned, however, acquiring a driving licence can be expensive in Singapore so make sure to read our insider tips on how to cut costs.

Here’s a guide to getting your driving licence and the costs of doing so.

Before you get your licence, you will need to do the following:

1. Basic Theory Test

You will need to study for the Basic Theory Test and book for it at one of the three driving centres in Singapore: Singapore Safety Driving Centre (SSDC); Comfort Delgro Centre (CDC) and Bukit Batok Driving Centre (BBDC). They are located at Woodlands, Ubi and Bukit Batok respectively. The test fee is S$6.50.

2. Provisional Driving Licence

Once you’ve passed your Basic Theory Test (BTT), you need to apply online using your Singpass with the Traffic Police for a Provisional Driving Licence (PDL). You need to pay S$25 for the Provisional Driving Licence.

3. Driving school vs private instructor

Do you want to learn to drive at a driving school, or with a private instructor? Driving schools offer full service (including theory lessons before you sit the Basic Theory Test), but do note that learning to drive in a driving school is more expensive than with a personal instructor.

Which to choose

Driving school

Pros

  • Driving schools have a structured curriculum. This works well for those who prefer a more organised method of teaching
  • Driving schools have the highest pass rates

Cons

  • You will need to go for more classes than with a private instructor
  • Costs more than with a private instructor

Private instructor

Pros

  • You have more flexibility with regards to timing
  • Saves travelling time. The instructor can pick you up at your home and drop you off after the lesson
  • Cheaper fees

Cost of driving schools versus private instructors

The prices can be significantly different between the two. Here you can see an estimated cost breakdown of learning at a ComfortDelgro Driving Centre (CDC) versus taking private lessons. All lessons are during non-peak hours. The private lessons are clearly cheaper.

 

Driving school (CDC)

Private lessons

Enrolment Fee

$176.55

$100

Induction programme

$17.12

BTT & FTT

$13

$13*

PDL

$25

$25*

Practical lessons

29x $68.48

25x $66

Simulator training

3x $26.54

3x $26.54*

Vehicular pre-operative check

$23.54

Learner driver competency screening

$55.64

Practical test

$33

$33*

Driver’s licence application fee

$50

$50*

Test vehicle & warm-up fee

$289.97

Total

$2,749.36

$1,950

*Fees paid to third parties

Choosing a driving school

If you choose to take up lessons at a driving school, one way to save costs is to opt for weekday classes during mornings or afternoons if you are free at that time.

Also, try to pass your driving tests within 12 months of enrolment as this will help you save on additional enrolment fees.

Below are the passing rates to help you in your decision-making.

The report from Singapore Traffic Police shows that ComfortDelGro Driving Center has a slightly higher percentage pass rate than Singapore Safety Driving Centre and Bukit Batok Driving Centre.

Passing Rate of Class 3 and 3A Practical Driving Test (1st Timer)

From August 2021-July 2022

Class 3 – First Timer Passing Rates

Driving Centre

(1st Time) Class 3 – Aug 2021 to Jul 2022

Total Tested

Total Passed

%

Bukit Batok Driving Centre

3,158

1,440

45.60%

ComfortDelGro Driving Centre

4,413

2,355

53.37%

Singapore Safety Driving Centre

3,161

1,327

41.98%

Other Candidates

7,241

2,926

40.41%

Class 3A – First Timer Passing Rates

Driving Centre

(1st Time) Class 3A – Aug 2021 to Jul 2022

Total Tested

Total Passed

%

Bukit Batok Driving Centre

4,353

2,312

53.11%

ComfortDelGro Driving Centre

6,446

3,765

58.41%

Singapore Safety Driving Centre

2,225

1,148

51.60%

Other Candidates

10,002

4,395

43.94%

4. Final Theory Test

Once both you and your driving instructor are satisfied that you are on the road to driving competently, you can book the Final Theory Test (FTT). The test fee is S$6.50.

5. The Practical Driving Test

Once you have passed both your Basic Theory Test and Final Theory Test, and done the required three modules of Traffic Police simulator training you are theoretically ready to take your practical driving test. However, your driving instructor will be best placed to inform you if you are indeed ready to take to the roads and make the booking for you.

The Practical Driving Test (PDT) will be conducted by a driving examiner, appointed by the Traffic Police. It consists of two parts. The first part tests your ability on the driving circuits while the second part of the test is held on the roads to gauge the way you interact with road users and your compliance with traffic rules and regulations.

Once you pass, you are no longer required to get a physical driving licence. The Traffic Police (TP) has stopped issuing physical driving licences unless requested by motorists.

Motorists are no longer required to surrender their physical licences if they do not have one.

Traffic Police can access this information using an individual's NRIC and date of birth.

Congratulations! You are now qualified to take your place behind the wheel of a car.

Final tip?

Pay less for your car insurance. Get a quick quote at Budget Direct Insurance and see how much you can save.

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