Remember the Great Grab Hike where they started charging platform fees as if their revenue isn’t enough? Well, now comes round two: Electric Boogaloo.
Grab to Raise Base Fares
CNA reports that our only-choice ride-hailing firm Grab will increase the base fares for their travel services by S$1.
Sounds measly, but the pain it brings my wallet is not measly at all.
Their current base fare is S$2.50 for its standard JustGrab and GrabCar options (what’s the difference?), compared to S$2.70 for their competitor GoJek.
Until, one day, they decide on yet another merger.
This extra S$1 will not be applied to its standard taxis, GrabHitch, and GrabCoach. But let’s be real, we’re probably not going to book a GrabCoach so overall, that’s an L for Grabbers.
The S$1 increase is in view of the higher vehicle operating costs and free-falling ridership the platform has encountered during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The company explained that ridership has not yet recovered to pre-pandemic levels, and fuel and maintenance costs have risen while fares stayed constant. The recently tightened restrictions have only worsened the situation.
The S$1 increase in prices came only after “deep discussions” with its drivers, unions, and the government, who agreed that fees are falling behind the rising costs drivers face.
So will the increase be given to drivers so they can offset their costs, instead of the “platform fee” that will “be reinvested into the platform to make rides safer and more secure”, in standard corporate speak that sounds dubiously like “oh no, we aren’t making enough money”?
Yes, but only for the month of June. How charitable, you capitalists.
After June, Grab will take a 20% commission—as is its usual rule—so that it can help vehicle owners maintain their vehicles too! Or, you know, keep it to make more money.
Grab will offer S$1 vouchers for peak-hour rides for the first two weeks of June to help customers adapt to the new measure.
It has also announced other measures to help its drivers, including incentives to undertake food and grocery delivery tasks, cash rebates tiered by the number of assignments they complete per day, and rental rebates for drivers renting their cars from Grab.
Driver benefits will also remain unchanged. Speaking to CNA, managing director for transport at Grab Singapore Andrew Chan described the firm’s recent moves as a “holistic approach” that they believe would be adequate in resolving the difficulties their drivers may face.
An extra S$27 million has also been budgeted by the Government to subsidise the work of taxi and private-hire car drivers, distributing S$25 to each driver per vehicle per day.
Feature Image: Yaoinlove / Shutterstock.com
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