So many ride-hailing apps have come and gone, but Grab and Uber remain the strongest options in Singapore.
However, as the competition heats up, both companies have added increasingly complicated options to their apps. Here's our guide focused on the ones with the best value to help you utilise the right ride option in the right circumstances. Read on to find out how to make your dollar go farther.
You would probably have seen the GrabHitch option in your app and thought that it’s Grab’s equivalent of UberPool, but it isn’t. What it is is a way to connect you with private drivers who might be heading the same way as you are.
As such, this option requires you to schedule rides at least 15 minutes in advance. But they’re the cheapest option for long distances at S$14 that this writer has found for her regular trips between the east and west. The driver will usually text you to confirm pick-up time making it a little more flexible. And because these are private drivers, you get cars outside of the regular Honda Vezels and Toyota Corollas that are so common with Uber.
The only mode of transport that’s cheaper than this is probably the MRT.
Most useful: When you can predict you will need a ride home after work. Ensures you get out of work on time too. You can't possibly keep your Hitch driver waiting now, can you?
Current promo code: MINUS50 for 50% off GrabHitch rides until 16 December when you pay by GrabPay.
GrabShare or UberPool
Depending on demand, GrabShare and UberPool are neck and neck when it comes to fares. But like as their names suggest, you might have to share your ride with someone else so it’s best to opt for these when you’re not in a hurry to get somewhere fast.
Now that GrabShare has joined in Uber's carpooling fun, it gives you choice when you’re trying to get a ride especially on Friday evenings. Feel free to compare both services’ fares to see which is cheaper since they both show upfront pricing.
Most useful: When you need a ride at the last minute and have time to spare, carpooling via UberPool or GrabShare is still the most economical option.
GrabCar or UberX
If the first two options fail then your next best choice is what Uber and Grab started out with - private cars for individual riders. UberX's base fare is S$3 while GrabCar starts from S$2.50. Both are cheaper than taxis which start from S$3.30. Per km, Grab charges S$0.50 while Uber charges an estimated S$0.45. Both services do not count in peak hour surcharge which makes them such attractive choices when peak hour kicks in for taxis.
However, when there’s surge due to high demand, you’ll probably better off relying on your good old taxis since fares can really skyrocket. Also note that Grab charges a flat rate of S$5 for an additional stop within 5km, instead of charging by distance or time, if you're thinking of dropping a friend off.
Again, fire up both apps and compare the two fares to make sure you're getting the better deal. Follow both Grab and Uber on Facebook to make sure you know about the latest promo codes or you could enable notifications from both apps so you don't have to be the one checking in.
Most useful when: When there are more than two people in your party, when you need to get to your destination fast or you're trying to get a ride after midnight, you'll find that GrabCar and UberX pricing makes a little more sense if demand is low.
Sometimes prices are just around a dollar more expensive than UberPool or GrabShare and you won't have to waste any time on other pick-ups or drop-offs so always compare rates to make sure you're getting the best deal.