Under the Shared Mobility Enterprises (Control & Licensing) Act 2020, depending on the device type, a licence or class licence may be required to operate shared mobility services within public places in Singapore. Currently, dockless bicycle-sharing licence applications are open bi-annually. To improve overall public path safety, from 17 May 2021, businesses that provide shared mobility services with docked motorised personal mobility devices (PMDs) and power-assisted bicycles (PABs) will also be regulated under a class licence.
Shared Mobility Services Licensing
The Land Transport Authority (LTA) opened a new licence application cycle for bicycle-sharing services on 15 January 2021 and the submission deadline for applications was closed on 19 February 2021, 6pm.
When evaluating applications, LTA will take into consideration the following factors:
a) The applicant’s plans to manage indiscriminate parking, including user education on proper parking behaviour;
b) Ability to maintain healthy fleet utilisation rates, including managing overall demand for its bicycle-sharing service and the availability of parking spaces; and
c) Overall track record including whether there were previous instances of regulatory contraventions.
Under LTA’s licensing framework, successful applicants which are granted Type 2 (sandbox) licences for bicycle-sharing services will be allowed to operate in public places for one year.
Type 2 (sandbox) licensees that demonstrate their ability to manage indiscriminate parking well, comply with regulatory requirements and ensure good utilisation rates will have the opportunity to obtain a full licence subsequently and grow their fleet over time.
Class Licence for Docked Motorised Device-Sharing Operators
From 17 May 2021, all businesses that offer for hire docked motorised personal mobility devices (PMDs) and/or power-assisted bicycles (PABs) to be ridden in public places (“affected businesses”) will be regulated under a class licensing regime.
Under the Shared Mobility Enterprises (Control & Licensing) Act (SMEA), a device is treated as docked if it is parked or permitted to remain at rest without a rider at (a) a place that is indoors, or (b) a device docking station or installation that is attached permanently to the ground for the exclusive use of a business’ customers. Therefore, devices that are hired out from and returned to fixed indoor premises such as a shop, warehouse and hotel are considered as docked.
Affected businesses will be automatically licensed with effect from 17 May 2021. Affected businesses do not need LTA’s explicit approval to operate, but are required to notify LTA of, amongst other things, their key business information such as registered business name, address, Unique Entity Number (UEN), type and number of devices that will be offered for hire in public places and relevant contact information.
Who will be class licensed?
Any business that offer for hire docked motorised PMDs and/or PABs that can be ridden wholly or partly in public places and end the hiring of such devices docked at any place. This is regardless whether the hire starts or ends on public or private land. Businesses that allow individuals to hire PMDs and/or PABs under a hire-purchase agreement will not be class licensed.
Examples of businesses that will be automatically class licensed include (but are not limited to):
- Businesses such as brick and mortar (physical) rental shops and hotels that offer docked motorised PMD and/or PAB rental services (be it paid or not) to the general public or a segment of it.
- Companies that provide docked motorised PMDs and/or PABs for their employees use in the performance of their work duties.
How to notify LTA?
Affected businesses will have to notify LTA through this online notification form.
For businesses, which start to provide docked motorised PMD and/or PAB shared mobility services on/after 17 May 2021, they must notify LTA within 30 days from the date they start to provide such services.
For businesses, that were already doing so prior to 17 May 2021, they will be given till 16 June 2021 (inclusive) to notify LTA.
Regulatory actions may be taken against licensees for failing to notify LTA within the stipulated timeline.
There are three types of class licensees as set out below:
Type 1: Docked motorised PMD with handlebar (e.g. e-scooter)
Type 2: Docked motorised PMD with no handlebar (e.g. hoverboard and unicycle)
Type 3: Docked PAB
No licence or application fee is required.
Class licence validity
There is no expiry date to the class licence.
Licence conditions and legislative requirements that class licensees must comply with
Class licensees will have to comply with the licence conditions prescribed in the order issued under the SMEA. This includes submitting the notification form promptly (refer to ‘How to notify LTA?’ section above), updating LTA of any change(s) of information submitted or cessation of shared mobility service within 14 calendar days (using the same online notification form above), and ensuring that hirers are able to track device speed while riding in public places. Please refer to the detailed licence conditions which can be found here.
Under the SMEA Regulations, class licensees are required to keep and retain:
(i) Daily hire records (i.e. a list containing the name and mobile number of all hirers); and
(ii) Daily device records (i.e. a list containing all devices’ registration number that have been deployed for hiring) for a period of TWO (2) years, and provide to LTA when requested.
Class licensees will also be required at a later date to verify that all hirers of e-scooters or PABs possess the proper theory test certification before allowing device hire. This will only come into effect some time after the mandatory theory test is made available from 30 June 2021 onwards. More information such as when class licensees need to start verifying for hirers’ theory test credential and the verification process will be shared in due course.
Class licensees may also be directed to refuse device hire to individual(s) who had committed certain offences under the Active Mobility Act (AMA)1 and Road Traffic Act (RTA). In such cases, class licensees will be provided with the necessary instructions via email after class licensees submit the online notification form.
In addition, class licensees will have to comply with the following requirements under the AMA1 and Regulations by ensuring that:
(i) The devices offered for hire meet the device criteria2.
(ii) E-scooters and PABs offered for hire are registered with LTA.
(iii) Hirers are adequately covered with third-party liability insurance up to the requirements of an approved policy3 for bodily injury or death when riding the hired device.
(iv) Hirers of motorised PMDs (with or without handlebar) who are below the age of 16 years old will be riding under the escort of a qualified supervisor4 before allowing them to hire the device.
(v) Ensure that hirers of PABs are 16 years old and above.
1The AMA governs the usage of Active Mobility (AM) devices (bicycle, PMD, PAB, motorised wheelchairs or mobility scooters) on public paths. It is an offence under the AMA to ride a motorised PMD or PAB on footpaths.
2The device criteria for AM devices used on public paths can be found under the AMA Regulations.
4A qualified supervisor is one who is at least 21 years old. The full guidelines for supervisors can be found on go.gov.sg/amrules.
Further information and contact
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (PDF, 163KB)
Industry circular (PDF, 105KB)
Sample hirer's undertaking form (PDF, 72KB)
For further enquiries, you can write it to us at DSO_Class_Licence@lta.gov.sg.