From March 11, it won’t cost a cent to cancel a Grab ride within 5 mins – after which, you must pay S$4 

Lianhe Zaobao

From March 11, you will be able to cancel a Grab ride and not pay a cancellation fee – if you do so within 5 mins of getting a driver, that is.

But after the first 5 mins – or 3 mins on GrabShare – you’ll be charged S$4 for cancellations.

Currently, passengers can cancel up to two rides for free within a seven-day period. Subsequent cancellations within that period will incur a S$5 fee each.

In an e-mail update sent to Grab customers on Sunday (Mar 3), the ride-hailing company said that the new S$4 fee will also apply to no-shows. Passengers will be charged S$4 if their drivers cancel their rides after waiting for more than 5 mins, or 3 mins on GrabShare.

This fee will go to the driver “as compensation for his/her efforts”, Grab said.

However, passengers will not have to pay the S$4 fee if the driver decides to continue waiting beyond 5 mins. Instead, the passenger will be billed according to Grab’s waiting time surcharge, which according to its website, is S$3 for every 5 mins.

The fee will either be deducted directly from a user’s GrabPay balance or credit/debit card, or added onto the next ride’s fare, for passengers who pay by cash.

Grab said on its website that the new cancellation policy “will still give passengers the flexibility of cancelling a booking they’ve just made, at the same time ensuring drivers get compensated fairly for their time and effort travelling to you”.

It also said in its email that this new policy was introduced to allow leeway in unforeseen circumstances.

“Maybe you keyed in the wrong pick up point or your driver is stuck in traffic. These things happen. Which is why we’ve made some changes to our Cancellation Policy that take into account these factors,” it said.

The ride-hailing company said that for each booking, customers will not face double charges – S$4 for cancellations and another S$4 for no-shows – at the same time.

Cancellation fee waived under certain circumstances

The cancellation fee will be waived if drivers take more than 5 mins beyond the estimated time of arrival to arrive.

“For example, if you are allocated a driver who is 3 mins away, but you’ve waited for more than 8 mins, your cancellation will be free,” Grab said.

Another case where the cancellation fee is not applicable is when a driver cancels a ride before waiting for at least 5 mins, or 3 mins on GrabShare.

The cancellation fee is not applicable to GrabHitch, GrabShuttle and GrabShuttle Plus.

“We expect this policy update to affect less than 1 per cent of our bookings, as the majority of passengers don’t change their minds after booking,” Grab said.

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