Trash-Picking By Kayak: A Meaningful Clean-Up Experience

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The ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ campaign is organised by PAssion Wave where members of the public help keep Singapore’s waterways clean in a kayak.

free rental of kayak equipment

Available every Wednesday to Friday till the end of September 2021, participants can get a free rental of kayak equipment and “pay” by picking up rubbish found in the waterways and dispose of them after the session.

Read on to see our ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ experience.

READ: Get Your Kids Outdoors & Learning Practical Skills in Nature

How to sign up for ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’

How to sign up for ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’

Those interested to sign up for a ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ session, can sign up for a slot that is available every Wednesday to Friday, 9 am to 11 am and 2 pm to 4 pm. New slots will open every Monday.

The two-hour session includes registration, clean-up, and the washing and returning of equipment. It is redeemable at the 6 PAssion Wave outlets, namely: Bedok Reservoir, Marina Bay, Jurong Lake Gardens, Sembawang, East Coast, Pasir Ris.

‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ at Marina Bay

‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ at Marina Bay

We got to sign up for a slot at Marina bay. The registration process was straight forward and participants need to check-in before going for a briefing at the boating area.


In the briefing, we were told the areas to avoid, to not pick up organic material and other important instructions. We were assigned a double kayak and provided with pails and tongs to collect the rubbish in.

kayak around the reservoir

As my partners was an experienced kayaker, it was much easier manoeuvring the kayak around the reservoir. Personally, as someone who had never kayaked before, the learning curve was relatively low. We believe that even those with no experience would still be able to enjoy and participate in this event.

bring gloves

We highly recommend bringing gloves to the clean up session. Have the gloves made it easier to be able to hygienically pick up smaller items that the tongs could not grasp. The gloves also came in handy when sorting the trash at the end of the session.

nearer to the banks

As we went around the reservoir, we found that the places with the most amount of trash was closer to the banks. Participants should be careful to not get stuck on the banks or to go too near the areas where water vehicles might enter and exit.

Kayaking And Otters at the Marina Bay

Kayaking And Otters at the Marina Bay

One of the highlights of the session was being able to see the family of otters that reside at Marina!

We were careful to respect their space and not to go up too close them. But, we were extremely excited and thankful for the privilege of being able to see this adorable creatures as they swam past us.

We watched them in their natural habitat finding food and we even got to observe them catching fish from afar. Seeing these otters also reminded us of the importance of keeping our waters, which is their home, clean.

Finishing our ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ session

Finishing our ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ session

At the end of the hour, we made our way back to the pontoon and took the trash that we had collected to be weighed and sorted. During our clean-up, we collected a total of 4.25kg worth of rubbish. A total of 200kg of trash has been collected for all 6 outlets since the start of Rent-A-Craft, Pay-By-Trash 2021 on 1 September.

eye-opening and a meaningful

The entire experience was eye-opening and a meaningful way to spend the morning. Other than a reminder that we should be considerate of how we dispose of our waste, it was also an encouragement to reduce our waste, especially the use of plastic, which was the main type of trash that was collected.

We recommend participating in this meaningful campaign and other clean-ups too.

Read more about the ‘Rent-a Craft, Pay-by-Trash’ campaign here.

READ: Get Your Kids Outdoors & Learning Practical Skills in Nature