The Singapore MRT is such a great way to get around the city. Even if it’s your first time navigating Singapore, don’t worry! There’s really no better mode of transportation. Here are the essential reasons why you should consider using the Singapore MRT line. We’ll also include the Singapore MRT map, some of our favorite station stops, and how to get from Changi Airport.
Quick Tips for the Singapore MRT Line
The MRT quite simply covers all of Singapore! There are 6 main Singapore MRT lines with 140 stations. 3 commuter lines are also part of the MRT network which extends just outside the city.
It’s estimated around 200,000 people use the Singapore MRT every day! Before we get into exactly why you should use this transportation method in Singapore there are some quick tips you should know.
– The Singapore MRT operates from 5:30am until around midnight daily.
– Trains run every 2-3 minutes during peak times (7am to 9am) and an average of 5-7 minutes outside those busy hours.
– Local residents may use Ez-link card or NETS FlashPay and top up money onto it. However, tourists can simply use any debit or credit card and scan it to enter the Singapore MRT station.
– It’s important to know you can not swipe the same credit card twice with this fare system! Make sure you bring a different method of payment for each traveler in your group/family.
– The majority of the Singapore MRT is made up of underground stations. However, there are elevators and escalators if you’re unable to climb up and down the stairs.
– Line up where directed on the station platform. This is a public transportation system that has a lot of order to it but it works!
– If you’re heading to Sentosa Island there is a separate monorail that offers direct service from the Harbourfront MRT station.
Singapore MRT Map
The six main Singapore MRT lines are listed below. When looking at the official map you’ll find the individual station name as well.
- East West Line (Green)
- North-South Line (Red)
- North East Line (Purple)
- Circle Line (Orange)
- Downtown Line (Blue)
- Thomson-East Coast Line (Brown)
There are also three commuter lines called Light Rapid Transit (LRT) which run further outside the city. You probably won’t use these on your first trip to Singapore, but still good to know!
- Bukit Panjang LRT
- Sengkang LRT
- Punggol LRT
6 Reasons to Use the Singapore MRT
1. Best Way to Get From Changi Airport
The first reason to use the Singapore MRT is it’s the most efficient way to get from the airport. The Changi Airport MRT station is located at the bottom of Terminal 2 and 3. You can easily take the shuttle bus or sky tram to either one and make the short walk from there.
If you’re heading to the city center you will need to transfer at Tanah Merah Station. Still, the total length of the ride shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes from Changi Airport MRT to downtown Singapore. The other options are to jump in a taxi (more on this later) or an express bus.
Just know that the express bus only goes from certain locations. A taxi will also cost somewhere between 20 and 40 Singapore dollars depending on the time of day. The MRT train will be about $2 USD in comparison!
2. Singapore MRT is Simple to Use
We’ve traveled all over Southeast Asia and through some of its biggest cities such as Bangkok, Jakarta, and Ho Chi Minh. After using these trains in other countries we can tell you that hands down, Singapore MRT is better than all of them!
We would even go as far to say that it’s on par (if not better than) the rapid transit system in most European cities. The Singapore MRT map and routes are clear and in English.
This makes it easy to get around even if you’re on a short 2 day itinerary. Also, if for some reason you get lost, there is friendly staff to help at the bigger Singapore MRT stations.
3. Endless Singapore MRT Stations
One thing we love about the Singapore MRT is how many stations there are. Singapore is filled with so many diverse neighborhoods to explore and it’s all very well connected by the train.
While we do love walking, it’s so nice to be able to jump on a train and quickly get to a completely new part of the city. It can also get extremely hot in Singapore so the air conditioned subway is the way to go during the mid-day peak hours.
Merlion Park, Gardens by the Bay, and the Marina Bay Sands Hotel for instance are all near each other. Yet, if you want to go to the amazing Hawker Centre at Old Airport Road it’s on the other side of the city. Trust us when we say this tasty food was worth the ride on the Singapore Metro!
4. Singapore MRT is Cheap in an Expensive City
Another reason to use Singapore’s MRT system is the price! It’s by far the cheapest way to get around the city. The actual cost will depend on how far you need to go. Still, a single ride should be somewhere between 1.50 SGD and 2.50 SGD. This means it will cost you less than $2 USD to get almost anywhere in Singapore.
Compared to other cities around Asia, Singapore is actually very expensive. So outside of the cheap local meals at the Hawker Centres like Maxwell, Chinatown Complex and Lau Pa Sat you’ll be paying quite a bit for accommodations and activities.
You will especially be out a few dollars if you go shopping in a central area like Orchard Road! As long as you’re taking the Singapore MRT line it will at least be cheap to get from place to place though.
5. It Beats the Bus and Taxis
So you’re probably wondering what other ways there are to get around besides train services. Why don’t we go ahead and break them down in case you’re not yet a believer in the Singapore MRT.
Walking: Just because we utilize this amazing transport system doesn’t mean we don’t walk most places. Honestly, Singapore is a completely walkable city. It’s just that there is so much to see you might not have enough time to stroll your way around. Many travelers stop into Singapore on a quick layover to continue onto other parts of Asia. If that’s your plan then you may want to utilize the train, especially from the Changi Airport MRT stop when you arrive.
Bus System: The bus is something we wouldn’t recommend in Singapore. It cost about the same as the train, yet the bus routes are not nearly as fast. On top of that, you may run into weird bus interchanges and rush hour traffic that you can avoid on the Singapore MRT.
Taxi Services: We can’t lie… A few times we have taken a Grab taxi instead of the Changi Airport MRT after long flights. In general, taxis aren’t the way to go in Singapore. Traffic can lead to long travel times like with the bus network, and the prices can be devastating depending on the time of day. If you need to take the occasional Uber or Grab Taxi we wouldn’t blame you. However, the faster you start to understand the Singapore MRT map the better off you’ll be!
6. The Singapore MRT is Safe & Clean
If you’ve already been to Singapore then you know it lives up to its reputation as one of the safest cities in the world. Due to some unusual Singapore laws and the overall culture of the city, you won’t have to worry about your safety at the train station. Even at night where it gets a little sketchy in other places, Singapore is as safe as can be!
On a past visit our friend actually lost her phone on the Singapore MRT and we thought it was gone forever. However, at the very next Metro station someone handed it in and she got it back! Where else on earth would that happen??
The Singapore MRT line is also the cleanest train you’ll ever see. There is no eating allowed and littering carries a hefty fine. Just remember not to bring any of that stinky durian fruit or you’re in for an expensive trip.
Have any questions about this article or want to share your own experience using the Singapore MRT? Leave us a comment below!
Brigitte & Jake
Where to Stay in Singapore
Luxury – Marina Bay Sands – We stayed at the Marina Bay Sands for Jake’s 30th birthday and it blew away our expectations. Aside from the luxury amenities, swimming in the rooftop infinity pool will be the highlight of your visit!
Iconic – Raffles Hotel – As one of the most historic hotels Southeast Asia, staying at the Raffles Hotel will be an experience like no other. Enjoy a Singapore Sling and take in the amazing architecture of this landmark built in 1887.
Fun Vacation– Parkroyal on Pickering– It doesn’t get much more green and lush then Parkroyal on Pickering! This fun vacation spot is literally one of the greenest hotels in the world. Plant life covers the entire property to make for a unique stay in Singapore.
Boutique – KēSa House – Located in Chinatown, this fantastic hotel was built in 1920’s. Enjoy the incredible setting in the heart of the city in a traditional building on Keong Saik Road.
Hostel – Hipstercity hostel – Fun hostel in downtown Singapore with both private and dorm rooms. Great place to meet other travelers to explore the city with.
PIN FOR LATER ↓
Singapore Travel Planning
More Posts: 23 Fun Things to Do – Butterfly Garden – Supertree Grove – Haji Lane – Singapore Sling at Raffles Hotel – Singapore Jewel – Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool – Liao Fan Hawker Chan– Singapore Airlines Review
Tours: Check out Get Your Guide for activities all over Singapore. You can book everything from a Singapore Highlights Bike Tour to a Gardens by the Bay E-Ticket, and even a private food tour with 10 tastings!
Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without being covered. We’ve been using SafetyWing for the last few years on the road and they are there when we need them.