Once upon a time, taxis ruled our roads and everyone had ‘ComfortDelGro Taxis’ on speed-dial.
Those blue cabs were pretty much our only public transport option if we were in a rush and needed a direct, on-demand ride to our destination… Until private hire rides came into the picture, that is.
With Grab and others offering rides up to 30% cheaper, the taxi industry took a big hit. In bid to stay competitive, Comfort now has a booking app and a flat fare pricing model to compete with their ride hailing rivals.
Here’s a comprehensive guide to Comfort and CityCab taxi fares, including the flag down and meter rates, booking fees, peak hour surcharges and more.
Comfort taxi fares in Singapore
The flag down fares and booking fees may differ by a few cents, but in general, taxi fares in Singapore are about the same whichever operator you go with.
Comfort/CityCab, however, has the largest fleet and are the most common on the road.
If you flag a taxi by the roadside, you’ll most likely get a yellow or blue cab, so let’s look at Comfort/CityCab’s prices for metered and flat fares.
Comfort taxi metered fares
|Comfort and CityCab taxi||Flag down fare (first 1km or less)||Meter rate*|
|Hyundai Sonata taxi||$3.20||$0.22|
|Hyundai i-40 taxi||$3.70||$0.22|
|Toyota Prius / Hyundai Ioniq and Kona taxis||$3.90||$0.22|
|* For every 400m thereafter or less up to 10km, every 350m thereafter or less after 10km and every 45s of waiting time.|
Metered fares are best if you’re flagging a cab for non-peak hours when the traffic is smooth.
If you opt for metered fares during peak hours, you’ll incur extra charges for being stuck in a jam and moving slowly.
ComfortRide taxi flat fares
|ComfortRide fare breakdown|
|Distance fare||$0.50 per km|
|Time fare||$0.15 per minute|
|Additional stops (or extra distance travelled for 5km thereafter or less)||+$5|
If you anticipate a jam and don’t want to pay more for it, consider Comfort Ride, which is Comfort taxi’s flat fare pricing model.
When booking through the app, you’ll immediately be “quoted” the flat fare for your ride — no surprises, whatsoever. This is relatively new; for the longest time, all taxis in Singapore charged by the meter.
Also, do note that regardless of which you choose, the fares exclude ERP charges. Because it depends on the route your driver takes, those are added onto your fare after the ride.
Comfort taxi booking fees
|Standard Comfort taxis (4-seater)||Comfort limousine cabs|
|Booking fees||$2.30 or $3.30 during peak hours||$10|
|Advance booking (at least 30 mins in advance)||$8||$18|
If you take the normal, sedan taxi, the booking fee is $3.30 during peak hours and $2.30 all other times. Peak hours are 6am to 9.29am on weekdays and 6pm to 11.59pm daily.
Comfort taxi booking hotline
There are a few ways to book a Comfort and/or CityCab taxis. Firstly, you can call a cab at 6552 1111. If you need a limousine or maxi cab, the hotline is 6552 2828 instead.
Comfort taxi booking via SMS
Alternatively, you can “SMS-A-Cab” at 71222.
The SMS format is as follows:
BOOK<space>postal code or taxi stand number<space>#pick-up point<space>*destination
BOOK 038988 #taxi stand *bishan
Comfort taxi app
Comfort taxi peak hour surcharges
As if they weren’t expensive enough, Comfort taxi prices go up during rush hour:
|Surcharge||Things to note|
|Peak hours||+25%||6am to 9.29am on weekdays & 6pm to 11.59pm daily|
|Late night||+50%||Midnight to 5.59am daily|
The peak periods are 1) before work from 6am to 9.29am on weekdays and 2) after work from 6pm to 11.59pm daily. For those, you pay +25% on top of your metered fare.
If you ask me, I think it’s unfair that peak hour taxi surcharges even exist. As it is, if you pay a metered fare during rush hour, you’ll already be penalised for being stuck in the jam (it is distance- and time-based).
But that extra 25% isn’t even the most outrageous surcharge: if you’re a party animal and break the Cinderella rule (past midnight), you’ll have to pay a whopping 1.5X of your metered fare.
Sian, right? I say it’s more worth it to use the money for supper before cabbing back at 6am.
Other Comfort taxi surcharges
|Payments by NETS||+$0.30|
|Payments by credit and charge cards||+10%|
|Pickups from CBD||+$3 from 5pm to 11.59pm daily|
|Pickups from Changi Airport||+$5 from 5pm to 11.59pm on Fri, Sat and Sun; +$3 for all other times|
|Pickups from Singapore Expo Centre||+$2 all day, daily|
|Pickups from Resorts World Sentosa, Seletar Airport and Gardens by the Bay||+$3 all day, daily|
|Pickups from Marina Bay Cruise Centre||+$5 from 7am to 11am daily; +$3 for all other times|
The peak hour fees are the most famous (or should I say, infamous) of them all, but there are other surcharges as well.
If you pay by card, it’s an extra +$0.30 for NETS and +10% for credit/charge cards. Certain pickup areas also cost a premium: you’ll need to pay $3 to $5 extra for pickups from selected areas.
How to save on Comfort taxi fares
If you’ve read this far, you can probably guess how I feel about taxi fares — they’re ridiculously overpriced.
As such, here are a few ways you can shave a few bucks off your ride:
- Always pay in cash to avoid the +$0.30 for NETs or +10% credit/charge card payments.
- Check the traffic conditions before booking your cab. If there is a jam, flat fares may be cheaper than the metered one.
- Check if there’s a location surcharge for your pickup point. If yes, take a train or bus out of the district before getting a cab.
To manage your expectations, however, your taxi ride will probably still be very expensive.
That’s because it’s pretty much impossible to work around the peak hour schedule. Even if our bosses allowed flexible hours, having to start work before 6am and leave before 6pm is quite extreme.
How you feel about Comfort taxis fares in Singapore? Tell us in the comments below.
Featured image credit: VasenkaPhotography via Flickr