Mr Poh Kian Teck decided to make the switch to being a bus captain in April this year. He wanted a more stable income and a job that allowed him to drive, which he loves doing.
Mr Poh is among 90 Singaporean taxi and private-hire car drivers to have received training to become bus captains since the beginning of this year.
The four public bus operators here are looking to collectively hire a total of 1,200 Singaporeans as bus captains this year, said Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan.
More than 300 people have been recruited to date, he said during the session which also involved representatives from the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and the public bus industry.
Mr Poh said he made the switch after his income from driving a cab dropped 30 to 40 per cent due to the Covid-19 crisis and increased competition from private-hire drivers.
The other bus operators are SBS Transit, SMRT and Tower Transit Singapore. They are targeting those who are already driving – driving taxis, driving tourist buses and private buses. They need to have the skills.
There are currently 10,000 bus captains in Singapore, comprising a “healthy mix” of Singaporeans and foreign nationals. The salary for bus captains has increased by more than 20 per cent since the BCM was adopted, from about $1,650 in 2015 to just over $2,000 currently.
So, do you feel convince to become a bus driver?