SINGAPORE - Commuters were more satisfied with public transport in 2018, according to the latest annual Public Transport Customer Satisfaction Survey commissioned by the Public Transport Council (PTC).
The poll, conducted in October 2018, showed the satisfaction score rising to 7.9 (out of 10), from 7.7 in 2017. It was the fourth consecutive improvement since 2014.
The satisfaction improvement was larger for the MRT, with the score rising from 7.5 in 2017 (a dip from 2016) to 7.9. This matched the satisfaction level for buses, which remained unchanged at 7.9.
Of the 5,000 people polled, 77.8 per cent felt bus services had improved in the last one year, down from 80.8 per cent in the preceding one-year period, while 72.1 per cent felt the MRT had improved, up sharply from 50.3 per cent previously.
Even as overall satisfaction rose, waiting time and comfort scored the lowest among eight attributes tallied. Waiting time for buses scored 7.4, up from 7 in 2017, while comfort for MRT scored 7.4, up from 7.1 in 2017.
"The uptick in commuter satisfaction is a reflection of overall improvements made in rail reliability," the PTC said on Wednesday (Feb 13). "Commuters' mean satisfaction score recorded for reliability rose by 0.9, from 6.7 in 2017 to 7.6 in 2018."
The survey was carried out by Nexus Link, an independent market research consultant. This annual survey has been conducted since 2006.
Commenting on the survey results on Facebook, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan said that three years of intensive maintenance, expedited asset replacement, new trains and buses are beginning to show results.
"Commuters have noticed the improvements. MRT service took a hit during 2017 and the survey that year showed a dip in its score. In the 2018 survey, trains' score recovered, to be on a par with buses at 7.9," he wrote.
"These results are inspiring for our transport workers on the ground. They work day and night, to regain public trust. Their efforts are showing results. But they are not complacent. They are pressing on. They know that the commuters have high expectations. And they have to work even harder and smarter to meet the demand."