GrabTaxi, Southeast Asia’s largest land transport app, today announced GrabHitch, an affordable social ride sharing service for Singapore commuters. This latest product offering is designed for drivers with extra space in their vehicles to pick up passengers who are going the same way. The GrabTaxi app now offers multiple complementary transport services that cater to different customer segments – with different travelling preferences and cost considerations. GrabHitch –now in its beta driver signup phase- will be launched to all consumers in Singapore by the end of 2015.
According to GrabTaxi, GrabHitch addresses a gap in the current market and provides a transport option at a price point between taxis and public transit options, such as trains and buses. Passengers who want a convenient door-to-door service at an affordable price can choose GrabHitch. Drivers can share their ride with passengers going the same way to offset the cost of their journey. The system is similar to pool-systems developed by Uber and Lyft in the US.
“With over half a million private cars in Singapore, there is a significant pool of vehicles with extra seats for more passengers”, says Anthony Tan, CEO and Co-founder of GrabTaxi. “Every car has the potential to play a part in improving Singapore’s public transport network and meet the growing demand of rides each day. With GrabHitch, we now offer the most number of complementary transport choices for people using the GrabTaxi app – to give people options at all price points, at all times and for all needs.”
Grab Taxi’s co-founder Tan Hooi Ling, adds: “GrabHitch hits the sweet spot for people who want a door-to-door transport service, but prefer not to pay a premium above public train or bus fares. We think GrabHitch will attract users of public transit options, which will alleviate the crowds on trains and buses. It is a win-win for both drivers and passengers in terms of costs, and there’s an added benefit of meeting new people with similar interests. GrabHitch makes transport more than a transaction – it’s now also an enabler to build new relationships.”
GrabHitch will match drivers and passengers who are taking the same route and going to the same destination.
Benefits to GrabHitch users include a social and price element (riders can for instance share the cost of a taxi), plus a safety side (registered and connected drivers and riders). With regard to the Grab Taxi network, all the services – GrabTaxi, GrabCar, GrabHitch and in
some markets, GrabBike – are available in the GrabTaxi app. Passengers have more transport options and can seamlessly choose to book the service they prefer at that point of time. With GrabTaxi’s large user base, GrabHitch drivers – and drivers on any of our products – will also have a higher chance of getting bookings, particularly during peak hours when ride demands increases.
How GrabHitch works: passengers can pre-book a ride seven days in advance and up to 15 minutes before pickup, simply by entering their pickup location and destination. Drivers and passengers will be notified when a successful match of the route is made.
In line with Singapore carpooling regulations, GrabHitch drivers will only be able to accept up to two rides a day, and the fares will only cover the driver’s variable costs, such as petrol and car depreciation. The fares for GrabHitch rides are calculated based on the distance of the ride and is shown upfront, allowing passengers to decide whether they are comfortable with the price before confirming the booking. All fares are paid via GrabPay, the cashless credit card option available in the GrabTaxi app.
GrabHitch is now open for the beta driver signup phase in Singapore, which runs from 11 to 30 November 2015. Early bird drivers who sign up during this beta phase will receive exclusive GrabHitch gifts and be eligible for a lucky draw. Drivers can download or update to the latest version of the GrabTaxi app, which is available for free on the Singapore Google Play or App Store, and sign up by clicking on the ‘GrabHitch’ icon and following the instructions.
- Grab Taxi extends its multi-modal system with shared ride option.