Grab launches new 'premium economy' option, services for families and passengers with reduced mobility

Grab's three new services, GrabFamily (Ages 1 to 3), GrabAssist and GrabCar Plus, will help serve "market gaps" which the company has identified. PHOTO: GRAB

SINGAPORE - Grab is expanding its platter of ride-hailing services to cater to more specific pockets of customers, namely families with toddlers, passengers with mobility needs, and those who want a "premium economy" service.

The company, which acquired rival Uber's South-east Asia business two months ago, unveiled these products at a briefing on Monday (May 7) - also the day Uber ceases its Singapore operations with the closure of its app.

Grab Singapore head Lim Kell Jay told the media that the new GrabFamily (for toddlers aged one to three), GrabAssist and GrabCar Plus options will help serve "market gaps" which the company has identified.

GrabAssist and GrabFamily (for ages one to three) are based on services previously offered by Uber. Grab's current GrabFamily service uses booster seats and caters to children only between 1m and 1.35m in height, or about four to seven years old.

For GrabAssist, drivers will be trained by the Agency for Integrated Care to help those with disabilities or the elderly. Cars used for this service will also be larger to accommodate foldable wheelchairs and walkers, for example.

The GrabAssist service is available from Monday, and Grab said half of the drivers are from UberAssist, a similar service.

With GrabFamily, which is similar to Uber Car Seat, cars will be equipped with an appropriate car seat for toddlers. The service will be ready by the end of June.

Cars under the GrabCar Plus platform will be less than three years old, and drivers will have garnered more than 98 per cent positive feedback. It will be launched by the end of May and fares will be between 20 per cent and 25 per cent higher than the GrabCar private-hire service.

Since Uber announced its exit from Singapore, a flurry of ride-hailing firms have entered the market or have signalled their intentions to join the fray. Ryde launched its RydeX service on May 2, while Jugnoo and Filo Technologies are in the midst of recruiting drivers.

Mr Lim said that about 80 per cent of drivers from Uber rental car subsidiary Lion City Rentals have signed on to drive on Grab's platform.

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