GrabCar to start operations in NAIA on March 14

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Grab is the first transportation network service to be allowed to operate by the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in all of its four terminals beginning Monday (March 14).

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Passengers at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) will soon have more options travelling to and from the airport.

App-based GrabCar will add its service to the current menu of airport taxis and rent-a-car, with operations in all four terminals beginning Monday (March 14).

It was a first for the airport management to accredit a transportation network service.

"We welcome Grab here simply because we have shortage of public utility here in the airport," said Maj. Gen. Vicente Guerzon, senior assistant general manager of the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA).

The airport now has about 1,500 accredited vehicles, servicing about 50,000 passengers a day.

But the MIAA posed a reminder for GrabCar clients — the private service has no designated parking space, and only drivers with confirmed bookings are allowed entry.

Pick-up locations will be as follows:

  • Terminal 1: Main arrival curbside
  • Terminal 2: Inner arrival curbside between bays 7 and 8
  • Terminal 3: Secondary arrival curbside between bays 5 and 6
  • Terminal 4: Curbside

Each airport terminal will have a GrabCar booth, which will also serve as the pick-up point. Passengers may also book a ride through agents at the booths.

"They will be using the convenience of Grab application and have a driver who is well trained and embodies the hospitality that Filipinos are known for," said Wee Tang Yee, country head of Grab Philippines.

A GrabCar has a P30 base fare and charges P12 per succeeding kilometer.

Airport taxis have a P60 flag down rate, with a P4 charge per succeeding 500 meters.

Other taxis charge a distance-based rate.

GrabCar in NAIA: Yay or nay?

Passengers expressed anticipation for the new taxi service.

Some said that GrabCar will make their trips more convenient, while others are looking into the worth of the service.

"It all depends on the price. If you get a good offer and you do not have to queue up that long, it makes sense," said passenger Herman Dinklar.

On the contrary, this new service does not sit well with airport taxi drivers, saying that Grab is "killing" their livelihood.

"Kung magkakaroon [ng Grab] dito (airport), siyempre mababawasan din kami ng pasahero," said taxi driver Oliver Ocuman.

[Translation: "If (Grab) will avail of its services here (airport), the number of our passengers will surely thin."]

Meanwhile, Lorelei Olalia, public relations manager of Grab Philippines, said passenger complaints may be sent to Grab Philippines.

"As much as they can, they have to accept all bookings. They have cancellation rates which can affect their performance so that wouldn't be a problem," said Olalia.

GrabCar drivers can only wait for two minutes at the arrival area, so passengers must book immediately and be on standy at pick-up points.