Remember back in 2012 when ride-sharing services like Grab were first introduced in Malaysia? 5 years down the line and it’s crazy to see how much they’ve broken the status quo, so much so even everyday drivers like us find ourselves being driven around town on lazy weekends or for business meetings.
While a lot of us primarily use the app to go from A to B, did you know just how much they’ve added to their app in the past 3 years? Here are 6 current functions you may not have known that were hiding in your app:
1. If you’re in a foreign country, your chat messages will automatically be translated to English
Going to Thailand and all you know is “tom yam goong”? Or to Vietnam and all you know is “me no want doggy meat”? It’s easy to get lost in translation when you’re a foreign land, and while there’s always Google translate or other language apps, we can imagine just how mafan it would be to copy the text from your browser/app and then pasting it into the conversation with your Grab driver. (And vice-versa, too.)
That’s why Grab has introduced GrabChat, where messages are automatically translated to English (or Malay, depending on your phone’s settings).
This function is only applicable for templated messages like “I’ll be there in a few minutes”, “Sorry, I’m stuck in traffic”, “Hello, I’m here”... which we’re guessing should be sufficient since it’s not like you’re trying to sell them some MLM stuff or something.
2. You can get free atas coffee, atas juice, or vouchers at atas shops (!!)
Yknow how credit cards, loyalty cards and retail memberships work? With every purchase, you get to collect points and redeem all sorts of stuff when you’ve got a heaping chunk of points. (Like a coffee machine for a friend’s housewarming cos you dowan to spend cash…)
Well if you didn’t know, Grab has their very own rewards program too. It’s called GrabRewards and it has actually been around for at least 4 months! For every RM1 spent, you’ll be rewarded with 10 points if you’re using GrabPay (a.k.a. credit card) and 5 points if you’re using cash.
But that’s not the best thing here… you can redeem all sorts of stuff from their catalogue. Sure, there are cash vouchers on Grab rides (I mean, duh, it IS Grab after all), but you can also redeem all sorts of lifestyle stuff. Atas coffee from Dome, cold-pressed juices from La Juiceria, prepaid cards from DiGi, cash vouchers from Isetan, cheesecakes from Komugi… you get the picture la.
Most of these are time-sensitive, so be sure to see what’s on redemption by checking your app periodically. Even if you don’t see something you like today, you may find something suitable the next week. One warning: your points DO have an expiration date! Faster go check your account to see how much you’ve earned, or not you sendiri rugi la.
Now that we’ve explained the basics of GrabRewards, here’s some next-level stuff…
3. You can naik pangkat and get cheaper rewards when you ride more
Within the GrabRewards program is this really interesting tier system. Riders will go from normal member <1000 points) to silver (1000 – 2999 points), then gold (3000 – 7999 points), and ultimately platinum (>8000 points).
And it’s not just a vanity reward – the higher you go, the more benefits you get. The higher your pangkat, the less points you’ll need to redeem stuff. Take the RM5 ride reward as an example:
Points aside, platinum members even get two extra features that others don’t:
- Priority booking – During peak hours, preference will be given to you so you don’t need to wait until your hair turns grey to get a driver.
- Special support line – Nobody likes waiting in line to speak to a representative on the phone, and by going Platinum, you may not have to. You’ll get a dedicated hotline number built within the app.
Hmm… we guess it’s a nice way for Grab to show their gratitude to their most loyal customers.
4. Riding for work? This system will make your HR department LOVE you
If you have lotsa appointments outside the office, you may find this function really helpful. Grab for Work is an all-in-one system that will kill all the super-mafan paperwork things like searching for receipts, printing them out one-by-one, making sure the receipts don’t fade away, that they’re glued properly to recycled A4 papers… wei damn sien la. Plus, you could use that time to finish up that report for your boss.
So… how to use Grab for Work? Well employers must first add their employees into a group within Grab’s service. From there, the employer will get to see and download all consolidated statements so that they’ll know where and when their employees have travelled to. Not only does this cut down paperwork, but it’ll also let employers track their company’s travel expenses and analyse the travel behavior of their staff.
Err ok la maybe not so good for notti staff members, heh… but the systems also allows for postpaid plans, so staff may not even need to fork out the moolah in advance. Everything can be billed to the company!
But what if your company DOESN’T wanna use Grab for Work? Well…
5. You can download all your receipts from Grab Hub
If your company isn’t using Grab for Work, Grab Hub (hub.grab.com/rides) is your perfect alternative. It’s a one-stop place where you can find a list of all your previous rides and download all your receipts at one go. PDF and CSV formats available!
If you’re worried about mixing up personal and business rides, just create a work ‘folder’ within your account. After you do that, you can also add notes to your rides:
See how organised it looks on Grab Hub?:
With this, you’ll have more time to finish your work… or look at more cat pictures… whichever’s your priority in the office.
6. You can add a stop to pick up or drop off a friend along the way
This point’s really simple.
Ever needed to make two stops in one trip? Like picking up/dropping off a friend who’s riding in the car with you? Or even just picking up your kid from the tuition centre? When you book your ride, just key in the two locations by clicking on the “+” button. In fact, it’s even cheaper for you to add a destination than to completely book a new ride!
Just remember to select the two locations BEFORE you actually book la, ‘cos once you confirm your ride ride, you won’t be able to amend it!
OH and there’s a 3-minute waiting period at each stop, so please don’t use it as a stop to buy groceries or withdraw money at the ATM. Must be considerate of the driver la, people need to makan gaji wei.
Wah so many functions! So what else would you wanna see?
Aite, we think we can all agree that ride-hailing services have come a long way. From being just an alternative to traditional taxis, it’s pretty cool to see how apps like Grab have managed to integrate into our lives in a few other ways.
Since we’re always going from one place to another, these little incentives mean it wouldn’t be a bad idea to ditch our cars, book a ride, and stretch out at the backseat.
So, if you’re a frequent Grab user, what kinda functions would you like to see in the future? Tell us in the comments and we’ll make sure our friends at Grab sees them 😉