GrabTaxi passenger encounters fare exploitation for two consecutive nights

December 19, 2019 - 6:21 PM
TNVS driver
Man driving a car. (Unsplash/why kei)

A GrabTaxi passenger shared that he had experienced fare exploitation when two different drivers requested him to pay a fixed rate different from what was initially presented on the mobile application.

Facebook user Ralph Albert Gerald Galanza explained that he and his companions would usually take GrabCar going home from work, particularly from Bonifacio High Street in Taguig to Mandaluyong City.

Recently, however, as Christmas season approaches, booking is more difficult due to the increased demand for rides, especially during rush hours.

This has prompted Galanza and his companions to settle for a GrabTaxi instead, where riders would have to pay an additional booking fee or peak timing charges on top of the metered fare.

“We understand na this Christmas season wala talaga kaming ma book na GrabCar, Grab 6-Seater, kahit Grab Premium, wala. So we opted for GrabTaxi,” he shared on Facebook.

“So eto. 2 nights in a row. Yung gusto lang namin makauwi kaya wala na kami choice but (to) accept,” Galanza continued.

"MERRY CHRISTMAS GRAB."We usually book Grab from work to home. We understand na this Christmas season wala talaga…

Posted by Ralph Albert Gerald Galanza on Wednesday, December 18, 2019


He recently booked GrabTaxi for two consecutive nights but both of its drivers failed to adhere to the metered fare as reflected on the app.

On the first night, Galanza booked a GrabTaxi within BGC to take him to a residential street in Mandaluyong.

However, the driver messaged him with the following (as seen on the left screenshot of his post): “OK po (ba) fixed 300.”

The second night, Galanza booked another GrabTaxi from the same origin and destination. A driver who accepted his request sent the following message: “okey (lang) sa inyo fare grab 315 plus booking fee.”

According to Galanza, he accepted both rides since he and his companions were already desperate to go home after a long day of work.

Although they settled for a manipulated rate, Galanza said that he has already reported the drivers to Grab.

Other Filipinos in the comments section shared similar experiences of being extorted by its drivers to pay an amount different from what is reflected on the app.

Breaching price commitments

Last Wednesday, the ride-hailing platform was fined anew by the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC), which asked the firm to pay P16.15 million for charging passengers “extraordinary” fares and for having excessive driver cancellations.

PCC said that Grab violated its price and service quality commitments from May to August 2019.

According to them, the platform’s price surges went beyond the cap set by the regulators. It also breached the allowed percentage of driver cancellations.

In a separate statement, Grab said that it violated its commitments due to the lack of supply in drivers and “worsening” traffic conditions in the metro.

“Grab is hopeful on fulfilling its commitments to the PCC, however, it highlights that as a platform, pricing will still be influenced by factors such as lack of supply and traffic situation,” the ride-hailing platform said.

In a previous interview with GMA Network’s “24 Oras,” Grab president Brian Cu maintained that the surge in fares is due to the higher demand.

He said that the platform receives around 700,00 to 800,000 requests per day but its drivers are only 35,000 to 36,000 in number.

“If the base fare goes up and the surge kicks in, talaga pong minsan double ang makikita nila,” Cu said.

Last month, PCC fined Grab P23.45 million for breaching pricing commitments.