Since 2015 KTM has run a commuter train between Johor Bahru and Singapore. The trains run from JB Sentral to Woodlands in Singapore (and the reverse). The cost is much higher from Singapore to JB. For whatever reason that is how the buses are priced too, the price is for example 5 MYR from JB to Singapore and Sing$5 from Singapore to JB. Since 1 Singapore dollar is 3.1 MYR that makes the price much higher from Singapore.
The train ride itself takes under 10 minutes. The schedule is subject to change but runs more frequently in the morning (from JB) and in the evening (from Singapore) and infrequently during the day. It is geared toward commuters from Johor Bahru to jobs in Singapore which is why the times may seem a bit odd at first glance.
Remember you have to pass through customs before getting on the train. They have made the process faster by having you go through both country’s customs office before boarding the train. With the bus you have to go through customs, go over the bridge, then get off the bus and go through customs again and then get back on the bus. This obviously wastes time. The JB extension to the Singapore MRT (whenever it finally gets started and then completed) will use this improved process of clearly both customs at the same time.
Frankly I find the KTM website too confusing to use. You may also purchase tickets via this site. Even on this site you have to be careful to get the right ticket (the results will include some that are not going between JB and Singapore – maybe that will be fixed when you look, but be careful).
The current schedule is (remember this may well change so try the links above for current information)
Johor Bahru to Singapore Train Schedule
Singapore to Johor Bahru Train Schedule
And you need to convert the ticket you purchase for a train ticket at the location (from what I understand). Again not an idea setup.
The advantage for the train is that it is very quick if you time things right (and there are not delays). The huge drawback is there are few trains can therefore have long waits. Taking the bus is much safer, in that they are always about ready to pull up and take on new passengers. I have another post about taking the bus from between Singapore and Johor Bahru. The problem is things can get really slow taking the bus when traffic is bad (when busses and cars are barely moving over the bridge – it can take over an hour, and even much longer sometimes, to get a bus and get over the bridge).
In Johor Bahru if you realize the train will be a very long wait it isn’t a long way to go catch the bus – maybe a 10 minute walk. I am not sure what the situation is from Singapore (last time I was there you couldn’t take a bus from Woodlands but maybe that changed). If that hasn’t changed I imagine in Singapore the fastest way would be to take a taxi from Woodlands to Kranji MRT (where you can catch a bus to JB).
Once you pass through customs into Singapore you can walk to catch a bus (or taxi or get on the MRT). This didn’t used to be true. From JB once you pass through customs you have always been able to walk to a bus, taxi or City Square Mall and Kotomar Mall.
With the recent increase in fees from driving cars between the two countries more people are likely to try out the bus and train options (each county has added a fee for cars not licensed in their country). Hopefully that will result in more trains being added to the schedule.