PETALING JAYA - The region's fastest-growing ride-sharing service operator Grab has introduced a carpooling app that offers cheaper rides while helping to ease traffic congestion.
Grab’s Malaysia country manager Jaygan Fu said the GrabHitch app allowed car owners to offer carpooling services to cost-conscious commuters, particularly those who need to travel a distance on a regular or daily basis.
“According to a study by Nielsen, Malaysia has the third-highest car ownership globally, where 93 per cent of households own at least [one] car and 54 per cent have more than one car.
“This represents a significant pool of vehicles with extra seats for more passengers and the potential to play a part in improving the nation’s transportation network,” he said during the launch of the GrabHitch app.
Besides reducing fares by between 50 and 85 per cent, he said the carpooling service would help ease traffic congestion and reduce pollution in the long run.
Fu said the new app service would not erode existing conventional taxi service but would complement alternative public transport needs.
The app will allow registered GrabHitch drivers to key in their routes to match with potential passengers for a deal to be struck based on mutual consent. The app also requires drivers and passengers to log on to Facebook as an added security measure, in which both parties can see if they share mutual friends.
“Both parties can indicate that they only want to travel with the same gender,” he said.
He also said GrabHitch was open for registration for drivers above 18 and with a year’s driving experience, while commuters can start scheduling their rides from May 15.