Grab PH: Average refund to customers 'wouldn't go beyond P20'

Franco Luna - Philstar.com
Last year, Grab bought Uber’s ride-sharing and food delivery business in Southeast Asia, the industry's biggest acquisition in the region.
AFP File photo

MANILA, Philippines — Grab Philippines country head Brian Cu defended the small refunds that users of the app received, saying that the disbursements were mathematically sound given the amount asked of them. 

The Philippine Competition Commission ordered the ride-sharing service to refund customers a total of P19.2 million for charging fares that were much higher than their initial pricing commitments. 

Social media users at the turn of the new year posted screenshots of their refunds, with some getting as low as P1.

A little after this first order, the PCC in December imposed yet another fine on Grab Philippines for further breaches of the amounts in the fare matrix.

READ: Grab slapped with new P16.15-million penalty for breaching price, service quality promises

"It's based on the amount spent they had during the period [of] February to August," Cu explained in an interview on ANC's "Headstart." 

"The average would really be around P20 per user if they use it equally. But some use it only once a week or once a month."

Cu said that he himself got a voucher worth P50 from the refund because he was a heavier user. 

"There are users who would use it more heavily than I would, so it would go up to 70, 80 [or] 90 pesos," he said. 

"I honestly don't know what they were expecting, but if you do the math, the average wouldn't go beyond P20."

READ: Grab passengers entitled to a refund to receive P1.50 on average

In response to users who bemoaned that the voucher forced them to spend the refund on further Grab rides, Cu also said that the wallet was "now an open wallet" after Grab Philippines was granted a license by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. 

"They can take the money in the wallet and move it to their BDO account, for example," he said. 

After the fine slapped on them by the PCC, Grab said in their defense that they were "working on a very limited number of drivers to serve an exponentially high demand." 

However, they did not dispute the fine imposed on them. 

Because of what has been called the de-facto monopoly held by Grab Philippines over the ride sharing industry, Sen. Win Gatchalian has called for other players to enter the industry to provide better service for the riding public. 

The senator also called for the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board to re-examine its fare matrix for Grab Philippines. 



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