The Land Transport Authority of Singapore (LTA) has published its recent enforcement actions against illegal chauffeured services in Singapore.
LTA’s 2018 Report Card against Illegal Chauffeured Service
3 foreign-registered vehicles that were caught for use as an unlicensed public service vehicle, and driving a vehicle without valid insurance, were forfeited.
Increased enforcement in 2018 saw THIRTEEN (13) drivers caught for providing illegal chauffeured service in Singapore. 1 case has been concluded while the other 12 are still under investigations.
The Penalty for Illegal Chauffeured Service
According to LTA website, all vehicles, including foreign-registered ones, are not allowed to provide taxi or chauffeured services in Singapore without a valid Public Service Vehicle Licence (PSVL) under the Road Traffic Act.
Any person caught using a vehicle that is not issued with a valid PSVL to provide taxi or chauffeured services shall be prosecuted. Upon conviction, the offender faces a fine of up to $3,000, or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or both.
The vehicle used may also be forfeited.
LTA advised consumers to avoid the engagement of these services as there may be insufficient insurance coverage against third-party liabilities and in the event of an accident.
A long-time problem in Singapore
The presence of illegal chauffeured service is not a new problem. Many drivers have long complained of the unfair competition brought about by these drivers.
Those drivers are mainly from across the causeway. They enjoy significantly lower operating costs in terms of car price and petrol and are paid for their services in a stronger currency. It allows them to offer a lower price compared to the legalized chauffeured service providers in Singapore.
These drivers often hang out at places where there is a strong tourist presence such as Changi Airport, The Singapore Zoo, Harbourfront Cruise Centre and even at the checkpoints.
The cars used are usually 6-seater or bigger to cater to tourist traveling in groups of 4s and more. The Hyundai Starex, Toyota Innova and Toyota Alphards are the common models used.