6 Reasons Why A S’porean Who Earns $8K A Month Still Takes Public Transport

大蛇丸 Orochimaru

Supremacy Member
Mar 31, 2015
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So, I’ve this friend. He prefers not to be named so let’s just call him Glenn. Glenn is a thirty-five-year-old department manager in an MNC, having gone through the typical Singaporean path of going to a Singapore JC, then a local university with a scholarship.

He started work since he graduated, job-hopped two times and now, he’s ready to settle down in this company, drawing a gross pay of $8,000 a month.

Single, rich and without commitment, he has a few credit cards but every morning, he still takes a bus to his office at Tuas, despite having the financial capability to buy a car.

If you didn’t know, cars in Singapore are expensive AF. Just take a look at this video we’ve made and you’ll understand immediately:

So, why does he do this? Here are his reasons, and to be honest, it’s just so convincing that anyone owning a car could just sell off theirs now.

It’s a depreciating asset
“I won’t say it’s an asset at all—you’re essentially ‘renting’ the car because it belongs to a bank. Even if you pay for it in full, the depreciation is so high that you’re practically just burning cash as every day passes.” Well, this is clear-cut for many.

It’s not convenient
“I know this seems unbelievable, but hear me out first. You see, some people, after work, would want to buy some food. If you’re driving, you’re just getting from point A to B. Yes, you may stop somewhere to buy food, but that’s a detour. If you’re taking the train, the infrastructure in Singapore would allow you to buy whatever you need on your way to somewhere. Want to grab some breakfast on the way to work? You can get it from any MRT station.”

Peak hours are unpredictable
“There have been train breakdowns, but they’re not as frequent as jams in expressways during peak hours. My understanding is that peak hours jams are almost an everyday affair—someone could spend an hour or more from Jurong to Tampines because of the jams. With trains, without breakdown, it’s an absolute one hour journey. We all don’t like uncertainty, right?”

You can’t do things in cars
“Time is precious and the time spent in driving requires full concentration; however, taking public transport gives you the freedom to catch up with old friends on Facebook, or if you’re a workaholic, read up on a report. To me, anything that can save my time is a good thing.”

You won’t get high blood pressure
“I’ve driven before and within that short frame of time, I think my blood pressure increases by a tad. Driving in Singapore is like a test of your patience—if you’re driven, you’ll just relax and sit as the driver complains. So, why not?”

Public transport in Singapore is awesome
“Agree or not is hugely subjectively, but if you’ve been to many places, especially the suburban areas, you’ll know how good and efficient our system is, albeit the breakdowns.”


Senior Member
Nov 7, 2012
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Um because $8K is not a lot to afford a car? Rule of thumb for people in other countries is to limit car expenses to 10% of monthly salary. Applying to SG and assuming it's take home, minimum salary to afford a car is 19K per mth assuming normal jap car at 1.5K per mth total expenses.
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Supremacy Member
Jan 3, 2002
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Logical and well reasoned.. if I were single still I would probably do the same. Except maybe tuas a bit far / inconvenient via public transport.


Arch-Supremacy Member
Jul 9, 2017
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talk so much about inconvenience, traffic etc etc. if free, all expenses paid will he accept the car?
Bottomline is the money, not shaming or what, just be truthful about it, no need to find some other excuses to sugarcoat.


Supremacy Member
Nov 22, 2016
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Can only say that he rather give up time to save on money. Tampines to tuas? I think he better buy a property at the West better.


Master Member
Dec 27, 2001
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Wa Lau, dun want buy car also need give so many excuses, can see your friend really pathetic. i know there are plenty of c-level execs who prefer take public transport to work everyday so I guess these people will need write thesis or essays to tell the world why they don’t buy car.


Jun 7, 2021
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Smi sai lai eh

U can he earning 8k today and get fired tmr with $0

It's abt net worth

I earn more than 2x this guy I also nv think abt buying a car..


Master Member
Apr 21, 2011
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If got kids, having car more convenient.

If single, car optional la. Especially now WFH common. Car parked at home just draining money nia
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