What you need to know about GrabCar

From how to book your own private car to the cost, here are the details of the complementary service to its existing GrabTaxi pick-up service
What you need to know about GrabCar

So original, calling it GrabCar, like GrabTaxiWell, it IS made by the same people who created GrabTaxi. Go figure.

So, new app to download?Nah, it’s integrated into its existing GrabTaxi app, available on iOS, Android, Windows Phone and yes, even BlackBerry. No really, it's available on BlackBerry, we're not kidding.

I’m confused. Should I book a cab or car?It depends. If there are no available cabs nearby, or you just hate to sit in an old taxi, you can pay more to sit in a comfortable sedan car.

Really? Like what, an actual limo?Well, almost. GrabCar partners currently have these cars in their fleet:

  • For four-seaters: Volkswagen Passat, Toyota Camrys and Mercedes Benz.
  • For six-seaters: Toyota Vellfire, Toyota Viano, Toyota Alphard and Mercedes Vito
  • For 13-seaters: Toyota Hiace
What you need to know about GrabCar

Okay, here comes the fine text, how much does it cost?The good news is, GrabCar is priced based on a flat fee, regardless of distance. Well, sort of. Each vehicle category and the distance traveled has a different flat fee.

If the trip is less than 4km:

  • Four-seater: S$38
  • Six-seater: S$45
  • 13-seater: S$50

If the trip is more than 4km:

  • Four-seater: S$50
  • Six-seater: S$55
  • 13-seater: S$65

Between 12 midnight to 6am, trips will be priced below:

  • Four-seater: S$48 (<4km), S$60 (>4km)
  • Six-seater: S$55 (<4km), S$67 (>4km)
  • 13-seater: S$60 (<4km), S$80 (>4km)

Wait, isn’t it like UberX?Yes, but unlike UberX, once you’ve made the booking with GrabCar, it’s a set cost. For UberX, it gives you the initial estimated cost, which is slightly cheaper than GrabCar. But UberX's price fluctuates based on traffic conditions and distance, so you could potentially be paying much more than the initial estimate.

What you need to know about GrabCar

What if I have to drop off multiple passengers?Officially, you have to re-book the driver after you dropped off every additional passenger. However, you can call the GrabCar hotline at 65703926 and be advised about the additional cost. As for us, we'd be nice about it and add a comment in the booking, offering to pay more, say S$10 per additional drop-off.

Credit card payment, yes?Big fat no. It's cash only if you're paying a GrabCar driver. Still, the company isn't ruling out the possibility of in-app payment.

Stop. What if a driver kidnaps me?Sheesh, don't be a paranoid android. Your rides are actually logged and shareable with friends. Plus, the pool of drivers are screened carefully, and their details are sent to you the minute they've accepted the booking, complete with photo identification, vehicle registration and everything you need to hunt them down.

What you need to know about GrabCar

So, how do I sign up?Like we said, GrabCar is integrated with GrabTaxi, so just download the iOS, AndroidWindows Phone and BlackBerry app from your phone and choose GrabCar when you’ve selected your pick-up and drop-off locations....

Nooo, not as a passenger, I want to be a driver and earn a quick buck!Hah! Great minds think alike, but sadly, we’ve got to burst your bubble there. You can’t simply download the app and start picking up passengers. GrabCar requires you to be an employee with a partner limo company that has the required licenses and permits needed to operate a pick-up service. You know how it is in Singapore, regulations from LTA and all.

Additional requirements include at least three years of driving experience with a clean driving record. You can’t look like Shaggy either. At the very least, a neat, tidy look and a good command of English and Mandarin are required.

Unfortunately, we couldn't wrangle the names of the partners, but you can contact GrabCar if you intend to quit your job and be a certified GrabCar chauffeur.

READ MOREGrabTaxi works because it addresses taxi demand and supply problem