Published: August 13, 2021 | Updated: August 19, 2021 | Posted by: Moneymax | Lifestyle
With the new variant of coronavirus plaguing the country, the national government has once again put Metro Manila under the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in August 2021. Some towns and cities outside Manila have done the same. This means that only essential establishments and industries, such as hospitals, groceries, and courier services are fully operational. 
Likewise, manufacturing and business process outsourcing firms continue to operate as usual. On the other hand, banks, telecommunication companies, certain legal firms, and some medical clinics operate with a skeletal workforce.
The most painful part of the lockdown, however, is the fact that public transportation has been limited. Moving around the metro is still challenging.
There’s an alternative, though, and it comes in the form of GrabCar Philippines. But you need to remember that riding the GrabCar is not the same as before. There have been a lot of changes, knowing that the ride-hailing company needs to adapt to the times to keep both drivers and passengers safe.
Refer to this comprehensive primer for using GrabCar Philippines during the ECQ or other forms of community quarantines.
Table of Contents
GrabCar Philippines is a ride-hailing service that lets passengers book a chauffeured ride for a fee. Grab only allows vehicles and drivers with appropriate commercial licenses to register as GrabCar service providers.
Passengers can book either a standard GrabCar ride or a GrabCar+ ride. GrabCar includes sedan vehicles such as Toyota Vios, Hyundai Accent, and Honda City, while GrabCar+ offers premium vehicles like Toyota Fortuner, Hummer, and Mitsubishi Montero. Furthermore, GrabCar+ fares are more expensive compared to standard GrabCar rates, but both services provide fixed fares you can see upfront.
Grab also offers another ride-hailing service called GrabTaxi that allows passengers to book a taxi using the Grab app. Unlike GrabCar, the fare for this service is metered. You also have to pay a booking fee and surge charges. Getting a GrabTaxi is the same as booking a GrabCar. Just choose GrabTaxi in the available ride options and confirm your ride.
For safety reasons, GrabCar Philippines no longer operates GrabShare, which allowed passengers to share a ride before the pandemic happened.
While GrabCar is operational during the ECQ, it has reduced its service areas for the time being. It also shortened its operating hours to provide its drivers enough time to drop off their last passengers before the curfew.
Here are GrabCar’s service areas and operating hours.
|Transportation Available||Territory||Service Areas||Operating Hours|
|GrabCar (2-seater and 4-seater)||Metro Manila||Metro Manila||24/7|
|GrabCar (4-seater)||Outside Metro Manila||Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, and Rizal||24/7|
|GrabCar (2-seater)||Pampanga||Angeles, Mabalacat, and San Fernando||24/7|
|GrabCar (2-Seater)||Cebu||Cebu City||24/7|
|GrabCar (2-seater and 4-seater)||Bacolod||Bacolod City||24/7|
If you’re planning to use GrabTaxi, here are the service areas and operating hours to take note of:
|Territory||Service Areas||Operating Hours|
|Metro Manila and surrounding areas||Metro Manila||24/7|
|Camarines Sur||Naga City||24/7|
|Pampanga||Most parts of Angeles||24/7|
|Negros Occidental||Bacolod City||24/7|
|Davao||Davao City proper||24/7|
|Misamis Oriental||Cagayan de Oro City||24/7|
|Zamboanga||Zamboanga City proper||5 a.m. to 11 p.m.|
To better protect passengers and drivers, GrabCar Philippines is implementing a set of policies that aligns with the government’s health and safety guidelines.
Here are GrabCar’s policies under the new normal:
Yes. Your driver can refuse your booked ride for the following reasons:
Due to the ongoing pandemic, Grab has mandated every driver to wear a face mask during service. If you see that the driver is not wearing a mask when he/she arrives at the pick-up point, you’re allowed to cancel the ride. Grab encourages passengers to inform the driver that wearing a mask is a must during the pandemic.
When canceling the ride, you’ll just need to select the reason “Driver not wearing a mask.”
GrabCar Philippines also introduced a new strike system for anyone caught violating the new safety protocols:
Drivers can use Grab’s Help Center to report passenger violations. If a passenger gets three reports, he or she will be shadow banned for 14 days. Meanwhile, passengers can report driver violations through the Help Center, before-trip cancellations, and feedback after the trip.
Upon GrabCar’s relaunch, two payment options are now available for passengers: GrabCar via GrabPay and GrabCar via your personal credit/debit card. Both only accept cashless payments.
This service only accepts GrabPay credits, but passengers can enjoy Grab Rewards and lower fares with each trip. You can pay your fare via the following steps:
You can pay for your GrabCar ride using your credit or debit card. However, with this payment method, you will not accumulate Grab points. Follow these steps to pay for your ride:
A government-issued memorandum actually allows your pet to ride with you via public utility vehicle (PUV). This means that your fur babies (or other pets) can ride a Grab with you. This is possible through Grab’s service called GrabPet.
Here are the animals that are allowed in GrabPet:
|Type of Pet||Method of Handling|
|Dogs||Leashed or crated; must have a muzzle|
|Cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, and hamsters||Crated|
|Fish||Sealed bag or closed fish tank|
The service areas for GrabPet include the following:
According to Grab, GrabPet is currently unavailable. However, pets can still be accepted in regular GrabCar service.
But before you get your pet aboard the car, take note of the following reminders:
Vaccination is in full swing these days. The government and the private sector are doing what they can to encourage more people to get vaccinated. And Grab’s fair share of commitment has been manifested in its new service called GrabCar Bayanihan.
GrabCar Bayanihan is a 2-seater service that will ferry passengers from and to vaccination centers. To give passengers peace of mind, the services will be driven by vaccinated drivers. According to Grab, this service is much cheaper than the GrabCar two-seater. Fares are priced 15% lower than the regular rides.
Currently, GrabCar Bayanihan takes passengers to the vaccination centers within the following cities:
Here’s how you can book your GrabCar Bayanihan service.
Note: Keep in mind that the GrabCar Bayanihan service is still in its Beta phase. At present, the service is limited to specific cities and vaccination sites, so there may be a chance that this will not be available in your location. Rest assured, Grab is continuously adding more service areas. Make it a habit to check the announcements on your app to see the updated list of service areas.
Living in the new normal requires us to adapt and overcome new challenges, especially when it comes to commuting and ordering our necessities through pabili service apps. While the government allows essential trips, finding a safe mode of transportation can be quite challenging.
Thankfully, GrabCar Philippines offers a safe option to take you to your destination. Make sure to follow their guidelines—wear a face mask, don’t book a ride for more than two people, and pay using cashless methods. If your driver isn’t following safety protocols, report them via Grab’s Help Center.
With a goal to help Filipinos lead healthier financial lives, Moneymax regularly publishes tips and tricks on personal finance and lifestyle, among many other topics. For more finance-related news and articles, follow Moneymax on Linkedin.