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'Go take MRT': Grab driver threatens to kick passenger off ride after she asks to choose route

Save time or save money?

A Grab driver recently got into an argument with his passenger, after she asked him to take a longer route to her destination to "avoid paying ERP".

As the argument went on, the angry driver threatened to kick her off the ride by dropping her off at the nearest bus stop. 

A four-minute video of their quarrel was shared on Instagram on Sunday (May 21).

In the clip, the private-hire driver can be heard telling his passenger that she was not allowed to choose the route.

But when the woman threatened to file a complaint against him, the driver countered: "I can drop you off at the [nearest] bus stop if you're not happy. You can book another ride."

The driver also pointed out that his preferred route, through the Ayer Rajah Expressway, was faster.

"Where got people as cheapo as you (sic)?" he told her. "If you can't afford the [toll charges], don't take a taxi… wake up earlier and go take the MRT instead.

"You want to save money? I understand… But don't cause inconvenience to others, and waste my time."

The passenger, still dissatisfied with the driver's choice of route, then accused him of "arguing with her".

But the driver insisted that she should know about "LTA rules" first before arguing with him.

"Don't get inside the vehicle and tell me that you want to take this route," he ranted.

"I take the fastest route… Just tell me you can't afford the ERP charges and I will pay for it.

"Why do you want to argue with me? Your life is in my hands now."

Do passengers get to choose route?

"The rider should have the right to choose their route and the driver should not claim that the passenger is a cheapo for avoiding ERP," one wrote. 

"If the driver don't know customer service then don't be a private-hire driver," another said. 

But one netizen pointed out that it's unfair to the driver if the passenger gets to choose her preferred route.

"To be fair, the price is already fixed and if the passenger wants an alternate route that is slower, it is unfair to the driver because he needs to pay for fuel fees," he said.

According to Grab's guidelines, for fixed price rides, the driver has the right to take the fastest or shortest route available as recommended by a global positional system.

"If you have a preferred route, reach a mutual agreement with your driver before moving off," they added.

On extra charges, Grab passengers are automatically charged for tolls in the app after the trip is completed.

For GrabHitch rides, ERP fees are not included in the fare and they will typically be borne by the driver. But in cases where a driver needs to enter an ERP zone for pick ups and drop offs, Grab added that the Hitch driver is allowed to ask to "share the cost" with the passenger.

For GrabShare rides, passengers will need to pay ERP charges when the car passes through the gantry. 

ALSO READ: Woman makes private-hire driver wait half hour for payment

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