Grab is one of the most frequently-used apps in Singapore, seeing regular use either for transportation or for the convenience of having meals delivered directly via GrabFood. GrabFood, Grab’s food delivery service, was created in January 2018 and will be fully integrated into the main Grab app by May this year.
To serve the needs of Singaporeans better, Grab has announced the introduction of four more new services; trip planner, video streaming, hotel booking and ticket purchasing.
Jerald Singh, the Group Head of Product and Design at Grab, illustrated the nature of these new services, explaining that a Grab user can utilize all these features within a single day.
”A day can start by planning your commute to work, to ordering your next meal, before planning your next holiday and movie date. And you can use GrabCar to travel to that movie date you’ve just booked and watch videos in the car during the journey.” he said.
As of today, Trip Planner is officially launched and is available for use. The Trip Planner feature assists users to plan their route to their chosen destination.
Using the Trip Planner service, we tried planning a journey from Tampines Mall to Marina Bay Sands. Instantly, a few route options were provided by the app, along with the arrival timings of buses and/or trains to better plan the estimated time required for the trip.
What if you realised that you will be late while on the way? You can book a taxi on the Grab app wherever you are at, which will direct you to the app’s transport services to book a taxi, GrabCar, or GrabHitch. Grab also shared that the company will be implementing GrabPay as a means to pay for public transport in the near future.
However, we realised that the arrival timings of the modes of public transport do not update automatically, and the user would have to update and refresh the app manually. Additionally, there is no way to pin your location by GPS, which requires the user to set the location manually. For those who are lost and unsure of where they are, this would be a major drawback. Of course, this is still in its early launch and Grab has assured us that more updates will be made.
The three other services will be rolled out in batches through the year. The first of this is the new hotel booking service, launching for all users in May 2019. Grab users looking for hotels during their travel plans can use the service to compare and book accommodations for their trip through a choice of either Agoda or Booking.com. Current Platinum, Gold and Silver Grab users can redeem vouchers to get up to $20 off when booking a hotel through Agoda, with minimum spending of $200.
At the time of the launch, it will not support payment through GrabPay, however, Grab will be working on the GrabPay implementation by Q3 2019. They assured that more features and benefits will be added throughout the year, such as free insurance for personal accident and flight delay with each hotel booking.
Also In May 2019, Grab will launch the new video streaming service, which includes a partnership with video streaming platform HOOQ to provide over 8,000 hours of on-demand streaming, ranging from Hollywood blockbusters to free-to-air content – all in-app.
Users will be able to access the video streaming content simply by accessing the Grab app and playing an episode directly in-app, such as from popular TV series, Legends of Tomorrow. Users can purchase a subscription through GrabPay, and redeem discounts on the service through Grab’s reward program, GrabRewards. Unfortunately, there is no way to pre-download videos watch offline and on data consumption.
Lastly, Grab’s ticket booking service is expected to launch in June this year. With the hype around critically acclaimed movies such as the recent Marvel Avengers: Endgame resulting in record ticket bookings, Grab aimed to create a simplified booking process for the average user. To help with this booking process, they have partnered with ticketing platform BookMyShow.
Booking tickets for movies can be an arduous process and having to find the preferred credit card to maximise savings may require some effort spent on online searches. With Grab’s new ticketing service, users will now be able to search, compare, and purchase tickets from leading cinema chains like Cathay Cineplexes and Carnival Cinemas, complete payment seamlessly with GrabPay, and also earn rewards via GrabRewards from every transaction. This isn’t limited to movies though – Grab revealed plans to expand this service to events, such as concerts in the future.
As you can see, the introduction of these services shows that Grab is not slowing down in creating the all-in-one super app.
Photos by Goh Jing Wen of the DANAMIC team. Visuals courtesy of Grab.