In 1994, the Land Transportation Authority in Singapore introduced off peak car or most commonly known as OPC car in an aim to lessen the increasing costs of motoring and enable people to have cars from its affordability. But not only that, it also aimed to loosen up traffic jams during the peak hours. The additional concept behind the OPC car is to give car owners the convenience of having a vehicle at a lesser cost.
When 2009 came, the OPC scheme was converted into what they call the Revised off Peak Car (ROPC) Scheme, both with the same aim of offering new car owners to take home savings from a reduced car used. One of the major differences between the two schemes is that with the new ROPC scheme, car owners enjoy can drive their cars whole day on Saturdays and on the eves of major public holidays such as the New Year, Lunar New Year, Hari Raya Puasa, Deepavali, and Christmas. This scheme also applies only to cars that were registered or converted after January 25, 2010.
Both OPC car and ROPC car are made notable by their red number plate, setting them apart from cars that are normally registered. These plates are also placed into the body of the car by an authorized inspection centre. Under the both schemes, owners cannot drive from 7am to 7pm from Monday through Friday unless they buy either a day pass or an E Day License which they can purchase easily at various outlets.
There are plenty of reasons to consider purchasing a brand new off peak car or converting your existing car into an OPC car. Owners of off peak cars are entitled to the OPC scheme which gives them $17,000 and a $500 off the annual road tax. On the other hand, those who intend to convert their cars into an OPC car is provided with a cash rebate of $1,100 every six months and the same $500 discount on the road tax.
In Singapore, driving is expensive—cars are expensive and registration and road taxes are expensive. The benefits of getting an OPC car may just be tempting for these practical reasons, but you also have to consider your lifestyle if you are thinking of getting one or converting your car into one. So is an off-peak car right for you? It may be if you are working but you do not drive your car to work. If your day is spent in an office and you would rather take a public transport and just need a car for extra activities at night, then off peak car is right for you. Students who could use a car but still prioritizes savings.
There are varied ways you can check if your car is registered under the OPC scheme:
1) The road tax disc of your vehicle will indicate what type of vehicle scheme your car is under and
2) You may verify your vehicle registration at the Singapore Land Transportation Authority eServices at www.onemonitoring.com.sg.