Review: My GrabTaxi Experience

Getting a trustworthy and decent cab is one of the the challenges that many commuters face on as daily basis. With the many modus operandi of cab drivers with ulterior motives, riding a cab has become unsafe nowadays. Not only that, but cab drivers sometimes tweak their fare meters to earn more and charge their passengers higher than the regular rate by making the fare meter run faster. Despite the number of cabs around the metro, sometimes too, it’s just so difficult to hail a cab. Either they are not happy with the destination because of the distance or the time-consuming traffic, or they will request for a dagdag, sometimes even as exorbitant as Php 100. Just last week, I paid a cab driver Php 350, inclusive of an additional Php 100, just to take me from Pasong Tamo Extension, Makati, to Pasig. Incredible how taxi fare have gone through the roof.

Last weekend, on my way to Blogapalooza, I got the chance to try out the service of Grabtaxi for myself. Grabtaxi is the first taxi service here in the Philippines that harnesses the technology of smartphones and cloud-based technologies to connect passengers and taxi drivers, for easier taxi booking and dispatching. If you’ve tried Basic Taxi, MGE, and other taxi services which you call for pickup, but charges an additional 50 on top of the taxi fare, you’d notice how it’s quite difficult to book a pickup with them. Most of the time, the operator takes a while in contacting their taxi drivers by radio, and you have to wait for three to five minutes on the phone, only to find out that there are no taxi drivers near your area to pick you up. Also, there’s no follow up, so you have to call them back again after some twenty minutes or so to find out if there’s any taxi driver available to pick you up.

With Grabtaxi, everything is done through your smart phone, as long as you have a wifi-connection available. Just download the Grabtaxi app from the App Store, and register an account. Input your destination, and then voila! The app will automatically alert nearby drivers that there’s a request for a pickup. The Grabtaxi app will even tell you how near or far the the taxi driver is, and how long you have to wait before he gets to your location.

In my case, the taxi driver who answered my pickup request was the one farthest from my location! He was 3.1 km away, compared to the other drivers who were less than 1 km away and can pick me up faster and get me to my destination faster.

Also, there’s this handy Call Driver option that comes included with the app, which you can use to contact the taxi driver. Maybe you can call him where he is (although you can track this with you app) or what’s taking him so long when he’s so near already (now this you can’t determine with your app :)) ) You can also use this option to tell the taxi driver that you got another cab and that he should find another passenger or respond to another pickup request instead of wasting time going towards your direction. Common courtesy, guys. Don’t leave the taxi driver who responded to your pick-up request hanging. Some even refused to pick up a few passengers on his way to you, because of his commitment to pick you up.

Also check out that the name and the photo of the driver who responded to your pick up request can also be seen using the app! You can rest easy because all the Grabtaxi drivers are screened and properly identified.

For Php 70 on top of the fare based on the fare meter, you get to breeze through the process of hailing a cab. Just book a pickup and wait. It’s easy enough from there, since Grabtaxi cabs are easy to identify, with their Grabtaxi sticker on the taxi’s windshield.

Kuya Herman of Grabtaxi

Kuya Herman, the driver of the Grabtaxi cab I rode, was really nice, too! It was a short ride, though, since SM Aura was just some fifteen minutes away from my place. He gave me a copy of my receipt, and I was on my merry way to Blogapalooza.

Today, I was able to see for myself Grabtaxi’s promise of fast, safe, and convenient taxi booking and riding experience. I didn’t know that peace of mind and hassle-free taxi experience can be as cheap as an additional Php 70 on top of my metered taxi fare. As I’m always in the need for a taxi ride to events and client meetings, this would definitely be not my last time to ride with Grabtaxi. -HANA

2 comments to Review: My GrabTaxi Experience

  • Ari  says:

    I’ve tried GrabTaxi and I was impressed with it! I only had to wait a few minutes for my cab, which was thankfully not too far away. I booked one at SM Makati, so I only had to pay an additional 20 pesos for the booking fee instead of 70, but I don’t mind paying the latter fee if I’m somewhere else because at least I know I’m guaranteed safety!

  • Boris  says:

    Admiring the persistence you put into your blog and detailed information you offer.

    It’s great to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same unwanted rehashed material.
    Wonderful read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m adding
    your RSS feeds to my Google account.

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