Grab to resume its price surge on April 23 after restoration of demand-based rate

Published April 21, 2018, 4:18 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Alexandria Dennise San Juan

Ride-sharing company Grab would resume its price surge to twice the normal fare on Monday after the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) restored its previous demand-based rate following the entry of new transport network companies over the week.

Atty. Aileen Lizada (Kevin Tristan Espiritu / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)
Atty. Aileen Lizada
(Kevin Tristan Espiritu / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

LTFRB member Atty. Aileen Lizada said Grab Philippines would return the X2 surge rate after the Board issued an order which “vacated and set aside” its previous decision to lower the TNC’s surge price from X2 to X1.5.

Lizada showed reporters the Motion to Vacate order signed by the board yesterday, April 20, which stated that “the directive in the order dated April 11, 2018 to lower the maximum allowable price surge is hereby vacated and set aside.”

On April 11, the transport regulator ordered Grab to lower its price surge while they are processing the accreditation of the new TNC players to enter the ride-sharing market.

This was after riders and some government officials feared that the industry be monopolized by Grab following its acquisition of the Southeast Asia operations of rival Uber.

With the entry of the three new local TNC players, LTFRB decided to lift the previous order of a lower demand-based price to its original rate.

Over the week, LTFRB gave the green light to new players Hype Transport Systems Inc., Hirna Mobility Solutions Inc., and Golag Inc., to legally operate as TNCs for two years and compete with Grab.

Before the order to resume the price surge, the LTFRB earlier directed Grab to put off its P2 per minute travel charge which have been the subject of a hearing for complaints submitted by PBA partylist Rep. Jericho Nograles, and 1UTAK partylist chairman Vigor Mendoza.

Nograles accused Grab of amassing some P3.2 billion from its riders for “illegally” charging the travel time rate, which Mendoza said was just among the many violations committed by the ride-hailing app.

Despite its announcement of complying with the order, Grab also filed a motion for reconsideration to appeal with LTFRB’s directive to suspend its imposition of P2 per minute charge.

The hearing on the matter is set to continue next month.