ComfortDelGro's new taxi driver scheme pays S$1,800 with benefits, drivers say it's not enough

ComfortDelGro is testing a new employment scheme where taxi drivers can sign on as full-time employees.

Ruth Chai | January 14, 2024, 07:50 PM



ComfortDelGro is testing a new employment scheme where taxi drivers can sign on as full-time employees to receive a monthly base salary of S$1,800 in addition to other benefits.

Traditionally, a taxi driver rents a taxi and keep what they earn after paying for fuel and a commission to the operator.

This model is advantageous for its flexibility, as drivers can decide their working hours for themselves.

However, this also means that their income is not stable.

About the new scheme

The pilot scheme was posted as a job advertisement online on Jan. 5, 2024 and will be offered until the end of March, according to Today.

Drivers can choose to work 11 hours a day for four days a week, or nine hours a day for five days a week.

They will receive full-time employee benefits such as medical and annual leave, as well as employee contributions to their Central Provident Fund (CPF) accounts.

Additional, they will receive a S$50 mobile phone allowance.

Their fuel costs will be borne by ComfortDelGro.

Bonuses will also be offered to those who hit daily key performance indicators, although it is unknown what the indicators are.

What this means for taxi drivers

The general sentiment amongst taxi drivers is that while having a stable income is a positive benefit, ComfortDelGro's monthly salary offer is currently too low.

Speaking to Today, six taxi drivers explained why the amount offered was unattractive to them.

A few noted that driving is considered a more dangerous occupation than sedentary jobs and long working hours can increase the risk of accidents. A few drivers felt that earning S$1,800 would be unreasonable considering these hazards.

There are also inconveniences that come with the job. Driving late at night, for instance, means that drivers might have to deal with drunk and unruly passengers.

Another driver added that he currently earns around S$4,000 to S$5,000.

Thus, switching to a substantially lower salary of S$1,800 would be unreasonable, and he would be unable to support himself and his family.

Top photo via ComfortDelGro