Contents we’ll cover

Here’s what we’ll be covering. Feel free to skip ahead to the relevant sections.

If you’ve missed Part 1, here’s the link or feel free to click any of the links of the contents page.

Part 1: Making the booking

1. Background on Renting

2. Finding a car for your needs

3. Choosing a Rental Company

4. Booking the Car

Part 2: Collecting & Returning

5. Collecting the Car

6. Driving

7. Returning

8. Specific Scenarios

Glossary of Car Rental Terms

5. Collecting the Car

Source: Pixabay, Pixabay

5.1 Turning up for Collection
  • Turn up 30 minutes in advance of the pickup time
5.2 Bring
  • Class 3 Driving License
  • Original Identification Card
  • Security Deposit (if required)
  • Booking confirmation
  • If Foreign License, bring a proof of address (eg. phone, electricity bill)
5.3 Collection process

The collection process takes 15 minutes to 30 mins on average. Exceptions include peak periods or if there’s a queue of customers. The collection process should take the following steps.

  1. Present Reservation Confirmation
  2. Read & Verify the Vehicle Rental Agreement Terms (example here
  3. Inspect the car you’re renting
  4. Agreement of Rental
5.3.1 Reservation Confirmation

The proof of reservation depends on the method that you’ve booked the rental at. If you have booked online, most sites will give proof of reservation. If you have booked direct with the rental company, they may use a reference phone number or your personal identification number.

If you have booked through Drive.SG, your reservation will look like this.

5.3.2 Vehicle Rental Agreement

Sample Vehicle Rental Agreement. Car rental agreements vary from company to company, hence it is not all encompassing.Sample Vehicle Rental Agreement. Car rental agreements vary from company to company, hence it is not all encompassing.

This document governs the legal contract/agreement with the rental company when it comes to the usage of the rental car. All rental car companies should have this. Insist on it if the rental company does not present you with this.

A proper agreement should cover

  • Details of Renter, Rentee, Dates of Rental
  • Vehicle Condition at point of handover
  • Terms of Rental

You may view a sample example of a vehicle rental agreement here. Details of Rental

This portion includes (not limited) the following

  • Hirer’s particulars: Name, NRIC & Contact Details etc.
  • Car Model & Make
  • Duration of Rental: Start, End
  • Car Options/Requests: Probation Plate, GPS, Child Seats, Delivery detalis
  • Rental Rate: Payable Amount & Refundable deposit amount Vehicle Condition

You should run through a proper handover of the current condition of the car with the car rental employee.

Ensure that dents, scratches, marks are properly marked out on the visual representation of the model in the vehicle rental agreement.

Ensure that any damage to the car is marked out and commented on the model itself.Ensure that any damage to the car is marked out and commented on the model itself.

Car Exterior

  • Scratches / Worn Out paint
  • Dents
  • Tyres
  • Rim Damages
  • Brake Cracks

Car Interior

  • Seats
  • Steering Wheel
  • Spare Tyre
  • Mileage of car

If this step is skipped, insist upon it. This ensures that both parties are aware of the condition of the vehicle at the time of handover. You do not want to liable for damages that were because of the previous renter due to sloppy documentation.

Drive.SG Tip: We advise to cover your a$$ by taking pictures from the 4 main angles of the rental car with your smartphone at the point of handover.

It takes less than a minute but can save you on potential disagreements. Terms of Rental

The common terms of rental does include

  • Terms of use
  • Liability of Renter
  • Traffic Offences
  • Condition on return of the car

Once you’re agreeable to the terms of the rental, only then should you sign the document. The company must make a copy of the agreement for you.

6. Driving the Car

Rental Cars in other countries. Source: Wikicommons  <a href=Rental Cars in other countries. Source: Wikicommons Under CC-SA 4

Beyond the basics of driving the car, we do advise the following:

  • Drive in adherence to the traffic regulations
  • The driver has to be the named driver at all times
  • Cashcard & Parking charges are to be borne by you
  • Don’t use it for Grabcar or Uber
    • Most rentals are not certified nor covered by the appropriate insurance for Uber/Grabcar

What happens if you have a traffic infraction? See Specific Scenarios

7. Returning the Car

On Time. Watch = Time.On Time. Watch = Time.

While returning the car,

  • It’s a common practice to return the car 30 minutes before the return time
    • This allows the car rental company to out process and clean up for the subsequent renter. Afterall, you could be the receiver of it.
  • Remember to take your belongings
  • Do a handover with the car rental company
  • Ensure that the rental company provides you with documentation to conclude that the car has been returned. It typically is the Vehicle Rental Agreement.
  • If you have paid a rental deposit, remember to collect it back.

TIP: Hold on to the VRA for a month just in case. It's a good reference in case of any traffic law violations. This helps provide a reference to ensure if the details match. See the Specific Scenarios section for more details.

8. Specific Scenarios

Exaggeration of traffic infraction. For illustration purposes only.Exaggeration of traffic infraction. For illustration purposes only.

8.1 Finding & renting
What if I’m a foreigner or hold a foreign driving license?

If your license is not in English, you would need an international driving permit to certify you can drive.

If you have been in Singapore as a employment pass holder/ permanent resident, your overseas license is valid for a period of 1 year on entry to Singapore.

After 1 year, it is compulsory for you to convert to a Singaporean license to even drive in Singapore or rent a car.

For more details on conversion of foreign licenses, do check out the official government page.

8.2 Collection
The car I was given was not the one I booked

All rental companies, even international brands, do not guarantee the make, model, brand, colour as stated in the terms and conditions.

  • If available, they will try to give you the car you have booked.
  • If not, most car rental companies will replace with a car of similar category or provide a 1 tier upgrade at no cost.
They asked me to top up an amount to upgrade the car when my car is not available.

This situation might happen if the company is out of cars of similar class or 1 tier higher to replace with. Hence for a nominal fee and if you are agreeable, the replacement would be even beyond 1 tier upgrade. Eg. Picanto to a BMW.

Again, it depends on whether you’re agreeable with it. If not,

  • If you’ve booked directly, we advise to find another company to rent with.
  • If you’ve booked through Drive.SG, give us a call on our emergency hotline. We help to talk to our partners to attempt to resolve issues or even find a last minute replacement instead.
They do not have my reservation in the system

If you have booked directly, try confirming with other booking details. Ensure that the details you booked under and the details on collection are the same. Usually, they are able to provide a vehicle for walk in cases. If not, you would probably have to find another company.

If you have booked through Drive.SG, double check the reservation details and location. Then call us at our emergency hotline. We help to check with the partner, or in worse scenarios, do a replacement from nearby partners in the event they cannot fulfill.

8.3 While Driving
What to do if you get into an accident?
  1. Stop the vehicle
  2. If there are injuries, provide or call for medical assistance
  3. Gather & exchange information from those involved & any witnesses. Do not admit or discuss liability at this stage.
  4. If a camera is available, take pictures of the damaged vehicles
  5. Call the rental company to inform them of the accident
8.4 After return
What happens if you have damages to the car?
  • Check with what was recorded on the handover section of the Vehicle Rental Agreement
  • Check with any photo evidence on whether the damage was there even before the rental
What happens if you have a traffic infraction? Or if you have received a summons from the Traffic Police. Or the rental company told you that you did so?
  • Ask for the copy of the Traffic Police Notice
  • Check back on your documentation as to whether the details of the rental and dates match
  • If the details do not match & you’re not the driver responsible for the infraction(eg. car license plate, rental dates do not match), bring it up to the rental company. If you’ve rented through Drive.SG, give us a call and email us with the supporting documents.


For a glossary of common car rental terms defined, check out our glossary.


That’s all folks!

Did we leave something out? Let us know what else you'd like to know in the comments OR email us at

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