Uber and Grab have been a godsend for commuters conveniently looking for comfortable rides and have grown tired of hailing cabs, only to be turned down by drivers due to heavy traffic in the direction you’re going or a host of other reasons they might not want to take you. Despite reports of incidents that concern drivers from these popular apps, we generally feel that they’re still one of the safest ways to get around the mostly clogged streets of Metro Manila and usually recommend it to our friends or family members if they find themselves without their personal rides. However, we’ve been hearing more and more stories about driver behavior from both companies changing ever since people have been making a business out of the service. The most recent complaint we’ve heard is that some Uber and Grab drivers have been getting a little picky and now get riders to cancel trips because they don’t want to cancel it themselves and take a penalty for doing so.
To those of you who may not be aware, when you don’t cancel your ride within 5 minutes — Uber charges you Php 100 as a cancellation fee. Grab does the same thing, but instead of charging you and if you cancel too frequently, they suspend your account. Drivers also get penalized for cancelling on their riders as well; as to what their penalties are, we’ll have to ask our contacts in Uber and Grab. So, what do these drivers do if they suddenly feel like you’re not worth the trip? They pretend to get lost or circle the block a few times and outright refuse to pick up their phones when called, forcing you to cancel the trip and getting charged the cancellation fee. This is something we personally experienced last night when we booked a ride on Uber.
Thankfully, Uber seems to be quick to reverse charges and reprimand drivers who pull this and other stunts (such as: not ending the trip when you’ve alighted from their vehicle) once they’ve reviewed the complaint. This new MO, however, is one of the things that made taking cabs such a pain in the butt in the first place — Picky drivers. We should all continue to report issues like this to keep drivers accountable for their actions and make the ride home after work a pleasant one. After all, the last thing you need after a long, tiring day is an Uber or Grab driver pulling your chain.
Why are Grab and Uber drivers getting picky like their cabbie counterparts? Well, we talked to an Uber driver about these incidents and he said that they’re becoming more common as of late, as more and more former taxi drivers are being hired as Uber drivers. As the old saying goes: “Old habits die hard”.
Got an Uber or Grab horror story to share? Leave it in the comment section.