Is the Grab new reward system for drivers a scam?

By November 5, 2018Current, Perspectives

TL;DR – You can earn up to $10,888.

For those who are unfamiliar with Grab or have been living under a rock all these while, Grab is a ride-hailing company that gives commuters more options than just the conventional taxis. Since its merger with Uber, Grab has been under a lot of heat lately not only from the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) but also from drivers as well as riders.

Many commuters have observed and voiced out their concern with regards to the increase in pricing after the acquisition. As for drivers, they are also voicing out their unhappiness with the new payout scheme.

To put things simply, we are not sure if the new reward system launched in October is supposed to make things better.

According to this new reward programme, a driver who hits 180 trips a week for one month, can earn $10,888, before deducting costs such as rental and fuel.

Grab, which has a significant regional presence, guarantees gross monthly incomes of $6,888 to $11,888.

Taking a look at this scheme, it basically means that if you wish to have a day off per week, that means you have to get around 30 trips per day. Which means it’s around 3 trips per hour. Sounds quite possible.

But what about lunch break? Dinner break? Toilet break? Or even simply on days that you fall sick or when your car needs servicing? Is it really that attainable then?

According to a Facebook post made by National Private Hire Vehicles Association (NPHVA), they commented that the new reward scheme is difficult to hit and get sufficient rest at the same time.

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Their words, not mine.

“The new driver reward scheme would be difficult for drivers to hit targets and get sufficient rest on a sustainable basis.”

Not too sure if all of these guys are private hire vehicle drivers but it doesn’t seems like it is sitting well with the community as well.



Screenshots via NPHVA and SGSME Facebook pages

I mean I get it, end of the day Grab is a private company and they will look out for their own profit margins and if drivers are unhappy they can “simply quit” isn’t it? But truth is, many of these drivers gave up their previous jobs or signed a contract and it’s really not that easy to leave just like that.

If Grab as a company isn’t going to keep their “partners” (or drivers or simply staff) happy, the seemingly ideal business model might not be sustainable. And if I may guess, the company can also call it quits in their ride-hailing business if it really doesn’t take off since they have already created other businesses such as GrabFood and GrabPay. Come then, we will be facing a bigger problem of having almost 20,000 unemployed drivers in our workforce. And because they are just “partners” and not exactly staff, I doubt they can seek much redress from the Ministry of Manpower or NTUC.

From Grab’s official site,

You hereby agree that the Company may terminate this Agreement at any time by giving three (3) days’ prior notice to you without assigning any reasons.

Yes, three days is all the time they need to send you packing. Yup, no reasons needed. They do not even need to go through the whole “it’s not you it’s me” thing to break up with you.

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As much as Grab is offering a decent pay to their partners now, things might not stay the same forever given what we are observing now. If you have family and friends who are drivers and depending on the income it brings, please do make sure they are prepared for changes, upskill themselves and be ready for future jobs instead of getting caught in another Grab-Uber merger scenario or something worse.

Anyway, the following comment sums it up best,



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Smith Leong

Author Smith Leong

Your resident Sports, and NetFlix but no chill guy. Also blogs at

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