Want to be a bus captain? Think twice. Actually, think thrice.

Updated: Jan 4, 2020


I passed out from SMRT training school and started working as a bus captain on 20th October last year. Barely a month into the job I was already contemplating quitting after being paid a pro-rated quantum of my annual wage supplement (AWS). Back then I was assigned service no.965, a route which involved ferrying passengers between Woodlands and Sengkang bus interchanges. Each off-peak hour trip must be completed within 119 min, whilst around 130 min is designated for each peak hour trip. Suffice to say, this frenetic pace of affairs day in day out leaves one extremely exhausted.

Only a 10-minute layover was granted: after passengers have alighted at the interchange and the bus gets parked, it's checking in at the time keeper's office followed by a quick toilet break.....then you gotta tap out once more prior to departure, collect bus keys and commence the next trip shortly. As far as meals were concerned we had to gobble down our food in under 35 minutes.

One thing that severely pissed me off was the $6k joining bonus. The amount awarded to moi suffered a 50% haircut ( yes I collected just $3k!!!!!), on top of this I had to be bonded for 2 years. Reason proferred? Owing to a headcount freeze, LTA wouldn't pay out the r