Public buses are largely considered as the next best alternative to the MRT, reaching nearly all the places the MRT does not. With the introduction of dedicated bus lanes, buses have become speedier and less affected by traffic. Conditions on board the bus are very comfortable as all seats are cushioned, all buses are air-conditioned and clean, and many are even equipped with mobile television screens. The majority of them run between 06:00 and 23:30 seven days a week.
Two bus companies, SBS and SMRT, service the routes, with most routes dominated by the red SBS buses. The fares are similar for both companies and the best method of calculating the fare for a journey is to visit the Translink website, which has a fare calculator that can be used to find the exact cost of your planned journey.
Planning your route via bus is very simple: simply visit the SBS website to input your origin and destination, and it will generate bus routes for you. Also, Mighty Minds sells comprehensive bus transportation maps at local bookstores and news stands, which give detailed route maps for the island. Alternatively, some bus stops post bus route information, and buses also post signage outlining major stops along their respective routes.
There are two doors to all buses: the front is for entry and the back door is for exit. Payment are best made by EZ-link card. To use this form of payment you simply tap your card on the pad as you enter the bus and re-tap it when you leave. Be careful not to forget to tap the card on exit as you will be charged the price of the full bus route. The price for using coins is markedly higher as subsidies are given for the cards.
Also, while you can get change from the driver, exact payment is preferred. Cash coin payment also requires figuring out your fare price and thus holding up the line of boarding passengers. Buses will stop only at bus stops and cannot be waved down anywhere else. You can ask the driver to stop by pressing the onboard bell that is located at regular intervals along the aisle.