24 Mar, 07:49PM in sunny Singapore!

Uber, Grab Apps/News/Discussion

Subscribe to Uber, Grab Apps/News/Discussion 1,344 posts

Please Login or Signup to reply.
  • tartzenz's Avatar
    1 post since Dec '17
    • I want to try out driving grabhitch cos I saw this article. The benefits included free petrol and parking. looks pretty promising. Any thoughts? 


      btw this is the article I read https://www.grab.com/sg/blog/driver/hitch/hitchsavings/ 

  • Queen of sgForums
    驚世駭俗醜不啦嘰 moderatress
    FireIce's Avatar
    265,641 posts since Dec '99
    • Uber-ComfortDelGro tie-up may lead to all taxis offering dynamic pricing


      The recently announced partnership between Uber and ComfortDelGro could pave the way for all taxis in Singapore to offer dynamic pricing, or fares that fluctuate with demand.

      Since March, close to 10,000 taxis from the five other taxi firms have started offering dynamic pricing if they are booked through the Grab app.

      In an interview with The Straits Times earlier this month, Uber Singapore general manager Warren Tseng raised the possibility of ComfortDelGro taxis also being priced dynamically, if booked through an Uber app.

      Called UberFlash and already launched in other countries such as Malaysia, it will dispatch the nearest car or taxi to passengers.

      Mr Tseng said that deregulation in Singapore's taxi industry has now made taxis a complement to and a "better fit" for Uber's product offerings, compared to when it first started here in 2013.

      "The old UberTaxi platform was, basically, you book a (metered) taxi. But now there's deregulation so the pricing has more flexibility - it can work along dynamic pricing and things like that. These changes have resulted in us shifting and pivoting our strategies as well," he said.

      While its main business was private-hire car rides, Uber previously incorporated taxi bookings in its app, under an UberTaxi option, in 2014. However, the feature fell into disuse, and a recent check by The Straits Times found no cabs available for booking.

      ComfortDelGro declined to comment when asked about changes to its taxi fare structures.

      Of the six cab companies in Singapore, it is the only one which has held out against dynamic pricing. Instead, it launched a flat-fare option for bookings in April, which are based largely on meter rates.

      On Dec 8, ComfortDelGro announced plans to acquire a 51 per cent stake in Uber's rental car subsidiary, Lion City Holdings.

      With the joint venture, which is subject to regulatory approval, the two firms intend to make taxis and private-hire cars available on each other's app platforms.

      As of October this year, ComfortDelGro has more than 14,300 taxis under its Comfort and CityCab brands. Uber has 14,000 cars in its Lion City Rentals (LCR) fleet - the main supply of vehicles for the app - which is run by Lion City Holdings.

      Observers see the Uber-ComfortDelGro tie-up as a response to Grab, which has partnered the other five cab firms - SMRT, Trans-Cab, Premier, Prime and HDT Singapore Taxi.

      Associate Professor Chu Junhong, from the National University of Singapore Business School's department of marketing, said: "Grab currently provides services for both taxis and private cars... it seems Grab is taking an upper hand in this 'war', likely at the cost of ComfortDelGro and Uber. In order to better resist competition... a joint venture seems to be a viable solution."

      But Mr Tseng said the tie-up with ComfortDelGro is not about the competition.

      Besides a better fit between Uber and taxis, he said LCR can leverage on ComfortDelGro's fleet management expertise - including insurance, vehicle maintenance and repairs - to help the company reduce costs and keep rental rates affordable for drivers.

      Singapore University of Social Sciences transport researcher Park Byung Joon said it will be a challenge for ComfortDelGro and Uber to agree on a pricing system for taxis.

      "Metered taxi fares offer stability to drivers and commuters in a way, regardless of demand," he said.

      While Grab has managed to persuade the five smaller cab firms to allow dynamic pricing, ComfortDelGro is still the largest player, and has more bargaining power, Dr Park added.

      Grab's dynamic pricing option for taxis is offered through its JustGrab option, which pools both private-hire cars and taxis. JustGrab has a base fare of $2.50 and a per kilometre rate of 50 cents, which is lower than metered taxi fares. This means cabbies stand to earn less when demand is low.

      Dynamic pricing has thus received a mixed response from cabbies.

      "I prefer street-hail as I get the customer right away and don't have to spend time driving to his pick-up point," said Mr Adrian Chew, 40.

      "Also, when fares are low due to dynamic pricing, cabbies are literally being taken for a ride," he added, implying that cabbies are getting a raw deal.



    • ComfortDelGro, Uber plan to integrate mobile apps


      Under their tie-up announced earlier this month, ride-hailing firm Uber and taxi operator ComfortDelGro are looking to integrate their mobile applications, which will allow commuters to book ComfortDelgro’s taxis through a new “uberFLASH” service on the Uber app.

      This was revealed on Thursday (Dec 21) after the Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS) called for public feedback on the proposed partnership between the two companies under a S$642 million deal which was announced on Dec 8.

      Based on submissions from the firms, the collaboration would cover booking services for meter-fared taxi services — with fares continuing to be set by ComfortDelgro — but it will “generally not cover (ComfortDelgro’s) core street hail business”. When an order is made by a commuter on the app, Uber will use its proprietary technology to dispatch the closest available taxi or chauffeured private hire car.

      The companies said the proposed collaboration will, among other things, “involve combining fleet resources of both (ComfortDelgro) and Uber to efficiently and effectively cater to the transportation needs of users of intra-city transportation services in Singapore”.

      The public consultation will run from Thursday to Jan 8.

      Singapore’s Competition Act prohibits mergers that have or may be expected to lead to a substantial lessening of competition within any market in Singapore. It also bans agreements that prevent, restrict or distort competition here, as well as “the abuse of a dominant position in any market in Singapore by an entity”.

      The competition watchdog said it was notified by ComfortDelgro, Uber and Lion City Holdings on Dec 11. The deal, which is the single largest for public-listed ComfortDelgro to date, will see the taxi operator acquiring 51 per cent of Lion City Holdings shares from Uber. Lion City Holdings is Uber’s car-rental arm in Singapore, and runs Lion City Rentals which has a fleet of about 14,000 vehicles. The deal, which is subject to regulatory approval, will “create a path” for ComfortDelGro’s cabbies to take on bookings via Uber’s app, the taxi operator had previously said.

      CCS said the companies’ submissions state that the businesses of ComfortDelgro and Uber/Lion City “overlap in the rental/leasing of private cars, and the provision of taxi and chauffeur private hire car services”.

      The firms also said that the rental car market is “extremely competitive, in view of the presence of a large number of existing competitors in the market”, and the need to ensure driving remains a “sufficiently attractive choice of occupation”.

      Experts had previously told TODAY that as things stand, the deal appears inadequate to turn ComfortDelgro’s bleeding domestic taxi business around. Singapore University of Social Sciences transport economist Walter Theseira, for example, noted that the future of mobility platforms lies in algorithms, data and technology that match travel supply with demand — and “not in the business of owning large fleets”.



  • Praveenkumarseo15's Avatar
    1 post since Jan '18
  • Queen of sgForums
    驚世駭俗醜不啦嘰 moderatress
    FireIce's Avatar
    265,641 posts since Dec '99
    • UberFLASH is arriving now

      Beginning 19 January 2018, get a ride faster with UberFLASH – a new product in the Uber app that matches you to the nearest uberX or ComfortDelGro taxi so that you can get a ride faster at an even more affordable price.



      1) Enter your destination in the ‘Where to’ section of the Uber app
      2) Select ‘UberFLASH’ under Economy
      3) Tap ‘Request UberFLASH’
      4) Your ride will be there within minutes!

      What is UberFLASH?
      UberFLASH is a new product in the Uber app that matches riders to the closest available ride, which includes private-hire cars and ComfortDelGro taxis. The combined fleet of cars and taxis now available on the Uber app means riders can get a car faster and at an affordable price.

      What is the difference between booking an UberFLASH vs hailing a taxi?
      UberFLASH is a product in the Uber app that includes both private-hire cars and ComfortDelGro taxis. This allows riders to have short wait times at a more affordable upfront price. With UberFLASH, you don’t have to hail or queue for a ride – simply request a seamless ride to your doorstep.

      Will riders pay the taxi meter rate or the Uber rate?
      Whether you are matched with a taxi or a car, you can enjoy upfront fares where the price of your ride will be shown upon booking. Do note that it may be subject to dynamic pricing when demand is high.

      Can riders pay with cash or credit card?
      Riders may pay for rides via cash or credit card via the Uber App. If cash is your preferred payment method in the app and you are matched with a ComfortDelGro taxi, you will now have the option to pay via i) Cash, ii) all major credit cards, NETS, NETSPAY, Alipay, DBS PayLah, EZ-Link and CabCharge card through the taxi in-car payment terminal.

      Can I request an UberFLASH at the Airport?
      Yes, but you will only be matched with private-hire cars. Request a ride at our designated pick-up locations at the airport as indicated in-app.

      Are UberFLASH trips subject to Wait Time?
      Yes, UberFLASH trips will be subject to Wait Time. If your driver waits at your pick-up location for more than 3 minutes, per min charge for Wait Time on UberFLASH trips will be $0.20.

      Can I see the driver and license number / Can I share my ETA / Can I rate my driver?
      Yes, you can. UberFLASH is powered by the same technology as all other Uber products and you will be able to enjoy all Uber features including driver details, sharing trip status, driver ratings and split fare on UberFLASH.

      Can I ensure that I only get a Taxi and not a private-hire car?
      If you request UberFLASH, you could be matched with either a private-hire car or ComfortDelGro taxi. If you would like to specifically request a taxi, swipe right to “More” after you set your destination. Select ‘Taxi’ and request your ride. Do note that fares on Taxi are calculated as per the taxi meter rate.

      Posted by Uber Singapore

    • #Grab targets overseas visitors by partnering with Singapore Tourism Board http://str.sg/oU4Y 

    • ComfortDelGro cabbies’ earnings take a hit after joining UberFlash  


      Just a week after Uber and ComfortDelGro rolled out their UberFlash booking service, many drivers from the taxi operator have stopped participating in it after complaining that earnings have been hit by low fares.

      According to Uber’s data, about 30 per cent of ComfortDelGro drivers who signed up for the service have stopped using it.

      UberFlash combines cars from the American ride-hailing company’s low-cost UberX service with ComfortDelGro taxis on the former’s app. The service went live last Friday (Jan 19).

      Uber and ComfortDelGro, Singapore’s largest taxi company, said earlier that the new service would offer fares up to 10 per cent cheaper than the regular price on UberX. That has not gone down well with some drivers.

      ComfortDelGro taxi driver Alan Chua, 39, said that a fare from Chua Chu Kang to Changi Airport, for instance, was S$22 on UberFlash, which was S$5 to S$6 lower than the usual metered fare. Moreover, Uber draws a 10 per cent commission from bookings taken up by ComfortDelGro taxi drivers. “The fares are too low … I believe ComfortDelGro is trying to gain market share, but at the expense of the driver,” said Mr Chua.

      For fellow ComfortDelGro driver Raymond Kiew, 45, an UberFlash ride from Jurong West Street 52 to Ghim Moh Market and Food Centre in the morning earlier this week yielded a fare of just S$5.50. Usually, he gets S$18 for the same trip.

      Although bookings via UberFlash are almost back-to-back during off-peak periods, the fares mostly range between S$4 and S$6 per trip, drivers said.

      “It’s better if I queue at the taxi stands; I’ll get more fares. The time I travel to pick a passenger up is equivalent to the time I wait at the taxi stand … For every street job, I have to do three UberFlash jobs,” said Mr Kiew. Since he started using the service, he earns about S$110 a day, after deducting the taxi rent and fuel. Previously, he took home an average of S$150 daily.

      Still, Mr Kiew, who drives in the day, said the service would be useful for drivers pulling the late shift from 4pm to 11pm because fares are subject to dynamic pricing where fares are higher when demand rises.

      His colleagues have seen fares rise between 2 and 2.4 times during the evening periods, or about 10 to 20 per cent above taxi metered fares, he said.

      Another ComfortDelGro cabbie, who gave his name only as Mr Sim, said he received a fare of S$7 for a trip from the city fringe to Ang Mo Kio, about half the usual price. “It’s ridiculous to drive more for less… We’re just lowering the whole market price. It’s a price war,” said the 36-year-old.

      To entice drivers to use the app, ComfortDelGro is offering a S$5 daily rebate to drivers who have signed up for and logged into the Uber driver app between Jan 29 and Mar 31. From Apr 1, they will need to turn on the app for at least eight hours a day, for a minimum 22 days each month, to qualify for the rebate. Said Mr Sim: “(A S$5 rebate) is kind of lame.”

      For the moment, the drivers interviewed by TODAY said they were not planning to continue using UberFlash and would rely on ComfortDelGro’s own booking app instead.

      In March last year, rival ride-hailing company Grab launched a similar service called JustGrab with five taxi operators: Trans-Cab, SMRT Taxis, Prime Taxi, Premier Taxis and HDT Singapore Taxi. The service is also subject to dynamic pricing.

      Taxi driver Wong Hui Fong, 35, who is with HDT, said that while the fares are low, Grab’s loyalty programme for drivers was a motivating factor.

      For instance, Grab’s driver-partners can earn between S$200 and S$370 a week if they meet targets, such as clocking a certain number of trips weekly, he said. “It serves as secondary income for us … You just need to put in the effort to work, drive and clock your hours,” said Mr Wong.

      However, a Trans-Cab driver, who wanted to be known only as Mr Lim, 56, said he has not tried the JustGrab service because the fares are “too low”. “It’s good for the customers, but bad for the drivers … I won’t pay attention to (the incentives) — you have to put in a lot of effort and there will be requirements to meet,” he added.


      Uber Singapore general manager Warren Tseng said on Thursday that so far, about 70 per cent of its ComfortDelGro driver-partners continue to use UberFlash since signing up. This indicated a “positive adoption of the product”, he said.

      “We expect (the proportion) to improve further as driver-partners become more familiar with the product,” Mr Tseng added.

      He reiterated that fares are “only one factor to consider when it comes to driver-partners’ earnings” — a point echoed by ComfortDelGro.

      Higher fares would not matter “if the vehicle remains idle or unoccupied most of the time”, said Mr Tseng. “It is more useful to leverage our technology to efficiently match driver-partners to rides, giving them the potential to earn more money through increased efficiency,” he said. “UberFlash is still in its early days and we stay committed to ensuring the product meets the needs of riders, drivers and Singapore.”

      ComfortDelGro group corporate communications officer Tammy Tan said that regardless of the booking platform, the operator is focused on helping its drivers maximise their earning potential, and keeping fares as affordable as possible for passengers. “We realise that these two may seem contradictory but they don’t necessarily have to be,” she said.

      Ms Tan added: “If our cabbies get more jobs, they will be able to increase their daily takings even if prices do not increase. This is why we are constantly looking at ways to increase the number of jobs available to our drivers. With dynamic pricing, fares fluctuate depending on demand. Feedback from our drivers is important and we will continue to engage them together with Uber to improve the overall driving experience.”

      For now, it appears that commuters stand to gain the most from the low fares.

      Commuter Mervyn Tan, 52, who has used the UberFlash service on five occasions since its launch, said: “It’s beneficial to riders… Low fares are a given. We’re already used to low fares.”

      Nevertheless, he said all five UberFlash trips which he has taken were served by Uber’s private-hire cars, with none by ComfortDelGro cabbies.

      The launch of UberFlash came more than a month after Uber and ComfortDelGro announced a S$642 million tie-up that will see the transport operator acquire a 51 per cent stake in Uber’s car-rental arm here. The deal is still being reviewed by the Competition Commission of Singapore.



    • Tough paper to pass to get the Private Hire Car Driver Vocational Licence 


      People interested in obtaining the Private Hire Car Driver Vocational Licence (PDVL) have to attend a 10-hour course and then take a test comprising two papers.

      Paper 1, on service quality and health and safety, has 50 multiple choice questions.

      Paper 2 , on private-hire car rules and regulations, has 50 multiple choice questions

      To pass Paper 1, you need to get 40 out of the 50 questions correct (80 per cent); for Paper 2, it is 43 out of 50 (86 per cent).

      A candidate who scores 84 per cent in Paper 2 would be graded as having failed it.

      Could some higher authority explain why the passing grade is set so high?

      Are candidates expected to be extremely smart before they can get the vocational licence?

      To sit for the test, a candidate has to study the contents of a textbook comprising 36 chapters and 298 pages, as well as four booklets.

      There are candidates who have to retake the tests repeatedly, in particular, Paper 2.

      I have sat for the tests and failed Paper 2 twice: The first time obtaining 72 per cent and the second time, 74 per cent.

      I don’t know how many times I have to take the test before I can score 86 per cent and above.

      I am 70 years old now and I really find the tests challenging and daunting because many of the questions require not just comprehension and knowledge, but questions that require memory recall. I feel this is rather unfair and inappropriate.

      One question, for example, tests you on the penalty you will face for violating a rule and the choices given are:

      A. a fine

      B. a fine and demerit points

      C. a fine and demerit points plus immediate suspension

      D. a fine and demerit points plus licence revoked

      There are many such questions and a candidate has to study and remember more than 100 offences and their respective penalties.

      I can only provide a tiny voice to highlight the plight of drivers who are exasperated from repeating the tests, and I hope the authorities will look into this issue.



    • Uber plans to sell Southeast Asia business to Grab

      SINGAPORE: Uber Technologies is preparing to sell its Southeast Asia ride-hailing business to Singapore-based Grab in return for a substantial stake in the company, CNBC reported, citing two sources familiar with the matter.

      No deal has been reached yet and the timing of any deal is uncertain, the report said.

      Reuters reported in November that SoftBank Group's multi-billion dollar investment in Uber had opened up the possibility of combining it with other ride-hailing assets that the Japanese group owns.

      Uber declined to comment on the report.




      Source: Reuters

    • Uber is preparing to sell Southeast Asia unit to Grab in exchange for stake in company: Sources


      Uber is preparing to sell its Southeast Asia business to Singapore's Grab in exchange for a sizable stake in the company, according to two sources with knowledge of the matter.

      No deal has been reached yet, and the timing of any such deal is uncertain.

      Grab provides private car, motorbike, taxi and carpooling services in more than 100 cities across Southeast Asia. The company claimed to have 95 per cent market share in taxi ride-hailing when it announced plans to raise more than US$2.5 billion (S$3.2 billion) from SoftBank and other investors in 2017.

      The move would mimic Uber's strategy in China, where the company sold its ride-hailing operation to Didi for 20 per cent ownership, and Russia, where the company merged its local business with Yandex's ride-hailing business for a 37 per cent stake. The objective would be to help Uber reel in its costs in preparation for an IPO as soon as next year, said the sources, who asked not to be named because the discussions are confidential.

      Since taking over for co-founder Travis Kalanick in August, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has focused on cleaning up the company's battered reputation and instilling financial discipline to push toward profitability. Uber's loss surged 61 per cent in 2017 to US$4.5 billion, according to numbers released this week, though its loss in the fourth quarter narrowed from the prior period.

      A tie-up with Grab would also play into SoftBank's efforts to exert greater control over the global ride-sharing market. In January, the Japanese tech conglomerate bought about a 15 per cent stake in Uber, mostly buying shares from existing investors. SoftBank also owns shares in Grab, Didi, India's Ola and Brazil's 99, and has publicly expressed interest in Lyft, Uber's main US rival.

      At the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference in San Francisco this week, Khosrowshahi said that competing against local players is very hard.

      "I think the team ran through an inventory of where we competed, and if we compete on let's say even on a dollar-for-dollar basis against the local player, paying the same amount to drivers, collecting the same amount from riders, in general where we are now is, if both players are kind of spending equally we tend to win share. We've got a better brand, we've got better technology, better network, etc. Whatever it is, we tend to win share. There's certain markets, China and Russia, where that wasn't true. And if your only competitive advantage, or the only reason you can be in a market is because you can spend money, that's not exactly a reasonable proposition."

      Reuters reported in November, citing industry sources, that a SoftBank investment in Uber would make it possible for the company to consolidate some of its ride-hailing assets across Asia. An Uber investor told Reuters that shutting its Southeast Asia unit would allow the company to "print money" and make an IPO more realistic.

      Uber and Grab declined to comment.



    • Spike in number of commuters opting for private hire vehicles over taxis  


      More commuters opted for private hire vehicles over taxis in 2017, while the customer satisfaction levels for both modes of transport edged up by 2.8 percentage points, said the Public Transport Council (PTC).

      The findings of a door-to-door survey by the PTC revealed that more commuters are now opting for taxis and private hire vehicles. The percentage of respondents who took a point-to-point ride in a week increased from 29.6 per cent in 2016 to 41.4 per cent in 2017, it said.

      Of these, 70.5 per cent took private hire vehicles in 2017, a significant jump compared to 50 per cent in 2016. Meanwhile, taxi rides fell from 50 per cent in 2016 to 29.5 per cent last year.

      “This could have been due to lower taxi ridership (which fell from an average 954,000 daily in 2016 to 785,000 in 2017) and the availability of more private hire car services,” the PTC said in a statement on Friday (Feb 28).

      A separate point-to-point Transport Services Customer Satisfaction Survey (PCSS) 2017 conducted by the PTC also found overall commuter satisfaction with the taxi and private hire car industry increased by 2.8 percentage points from 2016 to 2017.

      Of the 1,500 respondents, 98.6 per cent gave high ratings (six and above out of 10) for customer satisfaction levels regarding taxi and private hire in 2017. The figure was 95.8 per cent in 2016.

      Satisfaction with taxi services increased from 94.4 per cent in 2016 to 98.5 per cent in 2017, while private hire car services also rose from 97.3 per cent to 98.7 per cent in the same period.

      “This (improvement in taxi services) reflects the continuous efforts by the taxi industry to respond to market changes,” said the PTC.

      “The survey also showed that the numerous discounts by private hire cars was the most likely reason why respondents would prefer taking private hire cars, instead of buses and the MRT”.

      Respondents were asked to rate their satisfaction of taxi and private hire car services in seven attributes: waiting time, ease of booking, information, ride comfort, driver’s knowledge of route, customer service and safety.

      For taxis, commuters were most satisfied with its safety (97.3 per cent), while the ease of booking one fared the lowest (91.7 per cent).

      Private hire cars scored the highest for its ease of booking (97.7 per cent), while commuters felt that private hire drivers’ knowledge of route had room for improvement (95.2 per cent).

      The PCSS covered taxi and private hire car users aged 15 years and above. It was conducted from August 16, 2017 to September 2, 2017 at 30 locations around Singapore during both peak and off-peak periods across different days of the week.



    • Grab cuts fee for JustGrab taxi drivers for short trips, but raises commission for higher fares  


      From Monday (March 5), taxi drivers who pick up bookings on the JustGrab platform will pay less to the ride-sharing firm if the fares are below S$10.

      Grab first announced the revision to its commission fee for cabbies in a mailer sent out to the taxi drivers on Friday, which will see the levy for JustGrab rides reduced from 10 per cent to 3 per cent for fares below S$10. However, the fees for fares that are S$11 and above will be increased to 12 per cent.

      In response to queries from TODAY, Mr Melvin Vu, Head of GrabTaxi Singapore, said: “We’ve revised our levy to better support taxi driver-partners as they pay more than two times higher in taxi rental than private-hire vehicles.”

      “By setting a different levy for trips above and below S$10 in fares, we believe it’ll help drivers take home more income to cover their taxi rental costs.”

      Screengrab: Grab

      Launched in March last year, JustGrab combines cabbies from five taxi operators — Trans-Cab, SMRT Taxis, Prime Taxi, Premier Taxis and HDT Singapore Taxi — and private-hire cars on the same platform.

      Grab drivers will not see any changes to their levy amounts, which is currently at 20 per cent.

      Dr Walter Theseira, Singapore University of Social Sciences’ (SUSS) transport economist said that the changes were likely due to Grab seeing “a need to encourage drivers to be available for more short distance jobs.”

      The adjustment in levies comes more than a month after ride-hailing firm Uber and taxi operator ComfortDelgro rolled out a similar service.

      Under the UberFlash service, Uber takes a 10 per cent cut on bookings taken up by ComfortDelGro cabbies, less than the 20 per cent commission it levies on Uber drivers.

      The tiered levy structure drew a lacklustre response from taxi drivers on the JustGrab platform. Most of them said that the reduced commission fees were not much of an incentive to pick up shorter trips.

      Mr Ho Ze Kai, 35, an SMRT taxi driver said: “Of course, the 7 per cent reduction in levy for short trips is a bonus if there aren’t long trips available.”

      However, Mr Ho said that taxi drivers are more concerned about picking up bookings near the Central Business District, as the fares are usually higher due to surge pricing.

      Ha added: “It won’t really incentivise me to do shorter trips. I will still take jobs (that work) to my advantage. For example, in the evening when I’m driving in a residential area, I’ll only choose jobs that bring me to the city or somewhere near the city.”

      Another driver, who declined to be named, said: “I will still drive back to town even if I have no passengers in my car to get a surge fare rather than take S$6 to S$8 dollar jobs in a neighbourhood estate.”

      Dr Theseira said it is too early to tell if Grab’s levy changes will be able to compete with what Uber is offering. He said: “I wouldn’t say this amounts to a discount over (UberFlash’s rate) just yet. There are plenty of ways ride-sharing companies compete for drivers including incentives and rental rebates, so a driver would look at the overall package and not necessarily just the levy rate.”

    • UberFLASH Gains Good Momentum with Riders and Drivers

      A ComfortDelGro cabby of 13 years, Mr Sng was initially sceptical of UberFLASH.  It took just a day to change that.

      “The requests kept coming in back to back,” he said of his first day driving on the Uber network. “So the time I spent driving on the streets with an empty ride was reduced. I soon hit my target, and was able to call it a day earlier.”

      By the end of Day One, he had completed 30 UberFLASH trips – double his daily average.

      Mr Sng isn’t alone. One month into the partnership, thousands of ComfortDelGro cabbies have embraced UberFLASH, taking advantage of greater efficiency, increasing rider demand and the potential to unlock better earnings. With UberFLASH trips priced lower than uberX,  riders are getting accustomed to having more options for reliable and affordable rides. 

      Private hire driver-partners on Uber aren’t being left out. Jonathan, who had been partnering with Uber for eight months,  said he has been as busy as ever as UberFLASH trips gain popularity across the island, especially in heartland areas.  “It’s a win-win situation for all drivers”, he said. 

      Here are some facts about the partnership so far:

      Riders are choosing UberFLASH as their preferred Uber product

      • Over 75% of Uber’s rider base choose UberFLASH as their preferred Uber product, resulting in 2.5x growth in UberFLASH trips since launch.
      • Heartland penetration: Ridership on UberFLASH from heartland areas has grown over 30% since launch.
      • Quality assured: 95% of ComfortDelGro drivers on UberFLASH are rated 4 and 5-stars by their riders.

      Drivers are more efficient with UberFLASH, resulting in improved earnings

      • Average earnings have increased by 19% for ComfortDelGro drivers who are actively driving on UberFLASH
      • Increased efficiency: Drivers are spending less time idling and we see a 10% improvement where they are busy earning versus having an empty ride
      • Top ComfortDelGro driver has earned over $2,200 in take-home earnings per week on average through UberFLASH

      Watch this space for more UberFLASH announcements in the coming months, as we improve Singapore’s transport landscape through technology and provide more choices to move around at the tap of a button.

    • Parliament: Private-hire car services Uber and Grab may face regulations and licensing


      Private-hire car services Uber and Grab could be regulated in the future, and even subject to licensing, as the Government undertakes a review of the point-to-point transportation sector.

      Due to the growth of the industry, it is "imperative" that the Government has sufficient regulatory oversight over ride-hailing apps, to protect the interests of commuters and drivers, said Second Minister for Transport Ng Chee Meng on Wednesday (March 7).

      Mr Ng said in Parliament that the current basic regulatory regime has limitations and only licenses drivers of these ride-hailing apps and their vehicles.

      The Government is now studying how to license ride-hailing services, which will give it a "broader range of regulatory levers" to ensure the industry grows in a manner which meets the needs of commuters, drivers, and Singapore's broader transport landscape, Mr Ng added.

      While the Land Transport Authority (LTA) can issue suspension orders to stop drivers from operating for ride-hailing services, this is a "very blunt tool" as it impacts commuters and drivers as well, Mr Ng said during a debate on the Ministry of Transport's budget.

      Mr Ng noted that the ride-hailing services should "bear greater responsibility in ensuring the safety of commuters" beyond the existing requirements.

      Mr Ng was responding to Mr Ang Hin Kee (Ang Mo Kio GRC), who raised concerns about the growing market dominance of Uber and Grab, which have also formed alliances with taxi firms.

      In December (2017), taxi giant ComfortDelGro announced its intention to acquire a 51 per cent stake in Uber's car rental subsidiary, Lion City Holdings. The deal is still under review by the Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS).

      Then in January (2018), Uber and Comfort pooled their private-hire cars and taxis under a common booking service called UberFlash.

      Uber's rival Grab, meanwhile, had partnered with the remaining five taxi firms to also pool their vehicles under one booking platform called JustGrab, in March last year (2017).

      Recently, there have been rumours of Grab buying out Uber's business in Southeast Asia, stoking speculation of further market consolidation.

      Mr Ang said should one operator become dominant, commuters may have to bear with higher fares and lower service standards, and drivers will also have to put up with the conditions set by the company, or risk losing their jobs.

      In reply, Mr Ng said the Government's review will look into ensuring the point-to-point transport market remains "opens and contestable".


      "We must make sure that commuters and drivers continue to have options, and that no one single market player will dominate the industry to the detriment of commuters and drivers," he assured the House.

      The review of the private-hire car and taxi sector, which is targeted to be completed this year (2018), will also look into the possibility of licensing ride-hailing apps, like what is being done in London.



    • uber now also follow grab..... fares will be rounded to nearest 50cts.............

    • SAN FRANCISO/SINGAPORE ― Grab, the dominant ride-hailing service in Southeast Asia, is close to finalising a deal to acquire Uber Technologies' business in the region and may sign a deal this week or next, according to people familiar with the matter.

      Under terms of the proposed agreement, Grab would buy out Uber’s operations in certain markets in Southeast Asia and Uber will take a stake in the Singapore-based company, the people said, asking not to be named because the talks are private.

      The structure would be similar to the deal Uber struck with Didi Chuxing in China in 2016, when the San Francisco-based company sold its local operation in exchange for equity in the company.

      Under a scenario being considered, Uber’s stake in Grab is likely to be in the high teens or 20 per cent, said one of the people.

      Grab has separately been in discussions with existing backers, including SoftBank Group Corp., and new investors for additional capital, according to people familiar with the talks.

      Grab was most recently valued at US$6 billion (S$7.9 billion), according to CB Insights. The current talks may still fall apart or the terms and timing may change.

      Grab and Uber declined to comment.

      For Grab co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Anthony Tan, the truce would bring to an end a bruising battle for leadership in Southeast Asia’s fast-growing ride-hailing market.

      The companies have been locked in a struggle for control of as many cities as possible across Southeast Asia, home to 620 million people. 

      Uber’s new CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, has been pushing to clean up the company’s financials in preparations for an initial public offering next year.

      Pulling out of markets like Southeast Asia would boost profits at a company that has burned through US$10.7 billion since its founding nine years ago. Khosrowshahi signaled during a trip through Asia last month that he is committed to key markets such as Japan and India.

      Japan’s SoftBank became the largest shareholder in Uber in January, setting off speculation that it would encourage ride-hailing startups in its portfolio to cut back on competing with each other.

      SoftBank also holds stakes in China’s Didi and Ola, the India startup vying with Uber for leadership in that market.

      Grab, which has more than 81 million mobile app downloads, currently offers services in 178 cities across Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar and Cambodia. BLOOMBERG
    • Uber launches a new service for Singapore


      There's been a lot of talk about Grab acquiring Uber's Southeast Asia's operations. Sources have said that the supposed agreement is for Uber to let go of operations in certain markets in the region in exchange for a share in Grab. It’s really all hearsay for now, but it seems Uber is determined to stay in Singapore, after announcing today (Mar 14) a new service that will allow commuters get to work and back.

      A first in the region, Uber Commute is the ride-hailing app's answer to GrabHitch and will be launching tomorrow (Mar 15). It’s designed to be a “casual carpooling option” that’s in line with making Singapore a little more car-lite.

      However, these rides are strictly restricted to five days a week between 5am-10pm for now. A representative from Uber said that the next update will likely expand the availability to five and a half days, seeing how some commuters work on Saturdays. The eventual plan for the service is to have it available at all times to cater to all walks of life.

      Unlike UberPool, UberX and UberFlash, you can’t get a ride on demand. You can, however, schedule a maximum of two rides per day between a week to an hour in advance via the current Uber app itself, by accessing the “Commute” option through the menu icon on the top left. Just input your “Home” and “Work” address, choose your preferred timing and date of pick-up and wait for a match.

      There are a couple of upsides, of course—there is no dynamic pricing (you’ll be notified of the fee before booking a ride), the drivers will bear the cost of ERP charges (although drivers are encouraged to discuss before the start of the trip), you’ll be the only one on the ride (no multiple passengers are allowed), and it's expected to be 51% cheaper than uberX, making it a much more affordable option to get to work (the pricing structure adheres to current regulations under the Road Traffic Act, which states that the fares for carpooling should only be limited to covering the costs and expenses incurred).

      Also, from Mar 15-30, you'll enjoy 30% off all Uber Commute rides, so why not?

  • Eastrising's Avatar
    9 posts since Mar '09
  • Queen of sgForums
    驚世駭俗醜不啦嘰 moderatress
    FireIce's Avatar
    265,641 posts since Dec '99
    • Grab to get warning letter for extending flat-fare service to ComfortDelGro cabbies  


      Grab will be issued a warning letter from the authorities for opening its flat-fare JustGrab service to ComfortDelGro cabbies, a move that has been seen as an attempt to undercut a tie-up between the dominant taxi operator and rival ride-hailing company Uber.


      Responding to queries from TODAY, which first reported on Grab’s move last week, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said it was “concerned” about these practices.


      “LTA has met with representatives from Grab to remind them that they should ensure that taxi drivers offer only metered fares, if the drivers’ taxi companies have not endorsed Grab to offer flat fares on their behalf,” the authority said in a statement on Monday (March 19). “LTA will also issue Grab a warning letter on this incident.”


      LTA did not say when the warning letter would be issued to Grab, or if there would be penalties involved.


      In response, Grab, which does not have a partnership with ComfortDelGro, said it would continue its discussions on the matter with LTA, but did not say whether or when it would stop the offending service.


      “We hope that all taxi driver-partners in Singapore, including ComfortDelGro drivers, can be given the flexibility and choice of accepting JustGrab bookings, while not running foul of regulations,” a spokesperson for Grab told TODAY.


      Grab’s move came on the heels of January’s launch of UberFlash, Uber and ComfortDelGro’s answer to the popular JustGrab service. Uber and ComfortDelGro announced a S$642 million tie-up in December last year that is currently under review.


      Under current regulations, taxi drivers can only accept flat fares set by the third-party taxi booking services — like Grab or Uber — if these are endorsed by their taxi companies.


      Up until Grab’s decision last month to open up its flat-fare feature to ComfortDelGro cabbies, they could accept only bookings via the ride-hailing firm’s GrabTaxi service, which uses a metered-fare system.


      By default, the JustGrab feature is turned off for ComfortDelGro drivers, who have to switch it on if they wish to receive JustGrab bookings.


      Grab told TODAY previously that it had extended the JustGrab feature to ComfortDelGro cabbies as part of efforts to serve its drivers better through “improved earnings, support and tools”. The firm added that it had also been reminding ComfortDelGro drivers of the existing regulations through calls to drivers, and a blog post.


      But several ComfortDelGro taxi drivers interviewed by TODAY earlier this month admitted that they had accepted bookings via JustGrab above the metered fares.


      The LTA said on Monday that it would work with the Public Transport Council to investigate any complaints or cases of overcharging reported to them, adding that they would “take firm action against errant taxi drivers involved”.


      In the past year, the private-hire car and taxi industries have consolidated: Grab partnered five taxi operators — Trans-Cab, SMRT Taxis, Prime Taxi, Premier Taxis and HDT Singapore Taxi — to roll out JustGrab last March, while ComfortDelGro and Uber joined forces to launch UberFlash in January.


      Meanwhile, competition among the rivals has heated up, with Grab dangling carrots to entice thousands of ComfortDelGro drivers to jump ship.


      TODAY has reached out to ComfortDelGro for its response.




Please Login or Signup to reply.