The easy step-by-step guide to getting a driving licence in Singapore (Updated 2023)

04/02/2022

5 min read

So, you’re finally ready to get behind the wheel and manoeuvre a car after what seems like an eternity of being a passenger. Maybe you just turned 18 or it’s your 2023 resolution to get a driving licence. Regardless of what your reason is, congrats on making the big move!

If you’re wondering where to get started and how to go about it, you’ve come to the right place. Put on your learner’s hat and read our step-by-step guide to getting a driving licence in Singapore.

Step 1: Study and register for the Basic Theory Test

First things first, you’ll need to get hold of a copy of the Basic Theory Test (BTT) book and one of the Highway Code. We recommend that you take the time to study and familiarise yourself with the rules of the road first before registering for the test. Once you think you’re ready for the next step, go ahead and register for the BTT. The test costs $6.50 and you’ll be able to choose from three test centres across Singapore:

Singapore Safety Driving Centre (SSDC)

Bukit Batok Driving Centre (BBDC)

ComfortDelGro Driving Centre (CDC)

Do note that you’ll need to create an account with your preferred driving school before you can register for your BTT test. This will incur some registration fees.

Tips:

  • Remember to book your test early!
  • If you don’t wish to self-study, you can opt for theory lessons at your driving school where they go through what will be tested and give you mock tests. Of course, this comes with a fee, so we’d still recommend self-studying if you can!

Step 2: Apply for a Provisional Driving Licence

Once you’ve passed your BTT, it’s time to apply for a Provisional Driving Licence (PDL). To do this, you’ll need to apply online through the Traffic Police’s e-service by logging in via Singpass and paying $25 to pay for the licence (payable by either cash or NETS).

Step 3: Learn how to drive

This is when the actual driving happens! You’ll need to choose between learning to drive at a driving school and from a private driving instructor.

If you pick the former, bear in mind that there’s a fixed syllabus that you’ll need to follow as well as a minimum number of lessons to complete before you’ll be allowed to take the two final tests. Driving schools typically charge you anywhere from $69.12 to $81 for every 100-minute lesson.

On the other hand, a private instructor is much more flexible with the syllabus, training period and timings. We really suggest that you ask around, research as much as you can and read online reviews before choosing your instructor. Here’s where you can look for private driving instructors. Private instructors tend to charge about $40 to $50 per hour.

Both driving schools and private instructors will also charge you enrolment fees.

Step 4: Register for the Final Theory Test

Hold on! Before you can actually take the practical test, you’ll have to clear yet another theory test, known as the FTT. The steps and cost to take the FTT are the same as with the BTT. Book your test date at one of the three driving centres. Once you pass the test, you’ll have two years to complete your Practical Driving Test (PDT).

Step 5: Take the simulator lesson

You’re almost there. But before your driving test, you’ll need to go through 3 compulsory modules of the simulator course. You can qualify for this as soon as you’ve completed 5 practical lessons.

Step 6: The big day, aka your driving test

By now, you should be familiar with your theory, practical, and the slightly daunting acronyms of expressways. Your driving school or private instructor will let you know when you’re ready and book the PDT for you. The test fee is $33.

Your PDT comprises two parts and will be conducted by an examiner, appointed by the Traffic Police. The first part will take place in the driving circuit, whereas the second part will be on public roads to test your road ethics and how well you abide by the rules. We won’t lie — you can be given an immediate fail if you make a serious mistake while minor mistakes will result in penalty points, so stay alert and mindful on the road. 

We truly hope that you’ll pass this final hurdle at the first try, but in the event that you don’t, worry not. You can book two compulsory revision lessons and apply for a re-test. If you pass, well done! You can proceed to apply for your driving licence at one of the driving centres. This will cost you $50.

If you’re looking for a full list of fees that you’ll need to pay throughout your driving course, don’t forget to read our blog post on the costs to getting a driving licence in Singapore.

And that marks a new chapter in your life! Even if you’re not into huge commitments like purchasing a car right away (considering how car ownership in Singapore is expensive), there still are many carsharing options for you to choose from if you’ll be driving regularly. As long as you’re a P-Plate holder who’s 25 or older, or have at least one year of driving experience if you’re under 25, you’ll be able to drive a GetGo car.

Can you drive a GetGo car if you have an international driving licence?

If you’ll be living in Singapore for less than 12 months, you need not convert your driving licence to drive a GetGo car — as long as you’re holding onto an International Driving Permit. For more details on the requirements for international driving licences, check out this article!

(Featured photo: ComfortDelGro Driving Centre)

Ready to experience the #FreedomToDrive? Download GetGo now and book a car anytime from over 1,500 locations across Singapore.

To new beginnings!
Luna 🥳

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