US travel site ranks Singapore's public transport system best in the world

Far & Wide cited high commuter satisfaction rates and affordable charges even for tourists. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Singapore's public transport system has been ranked top in the world by a US-based travel website, Far & Wide, beating other cities like London and Hong Kong.

The website cited high commuter satisfaction rates and affordable charges even for tourists for the Republic's top billing.

Tourists pay $10 for unlimited rides on buses and trains for a day in Singapore. A similar pass in Madrid and London costs about $13 and $22 respectively.

Hong Kong's tourist travel pass also costs about $10 per day but children aged three to 11 ride for about $5 a day. In Singapore, children who are 0.9m tall and below ride for free.

Far & Wide cited an international survey by consulting firm McKinsey in 2018 for Singapore taking top spot in its "Cities with Best Public Transportation" ranking.

The McKinsey survey showed about 86 per cent of respondents were satisfied with Singapore's public transport system, the highest score among the top 10 cities.

"Why are so many people pleased? To start, Singapore boasts cutting-edge electronic services, including a newly enhanced trip planner, and ticketing options, like an easy-to-use ez-link card that handily connects to an app," said Far & Wide.

The website added that one could not expect anything less from Singapore, which it described as a tech-savvy hub.

The website also noted that the Government was undertaking ambitious plans to further expand and increase the reliability of the MRT system.

As part of improvements to the public transport network, the Land Transport Authority announced on Sept 28 that it bought 40 new trains for the North-South and East-West MRT lines, the first of which will start running in 2024.

Results from an online survey conducted by the Singapore Management University (SMU) of about 7,500 people showed increases in commuter satisfaction scores from May to July, compared with the same period last year.

On Sept 29, SMU said the MRT system scored 73.4 points this year, up 66.1 in the survey in the same period last year.

Satisfaction with public buses likewise went up from 68.9 points to 74.4 points in the same period.

Far & Wide is run by parent company Granite Media, which was launched in July 2017. Including Far & Wide, Granite has six consumer sites under its portfolio focused on topics like parenting, pets and sports.

Paris and Madrid rounded off the top five in Far & Wide's ranking for public transportation.

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