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Three men refuse to pay Grab Premium fare, driver chases them on foot

Deterrents against fare evaders and safety advice for taxi, and rideshare drivers set in place by Singapore Public Transport Council (PTC) to stop the increase of fare evasion incidents.

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It is widely assumed that people who choose to take taxis or rideshare services are able to pay for the relatively more expensive transport method. However, the latest incident of fare evasion may prove this assumption wrong.

According to an initial report by Chinese evening daily Shin Min Daily News, three men ran out of the Grab Premium vehicle they were in, without paying the designated fare.

The driver, a 45-year-old Hong, chased after the men on foot for nearly 1 kilometre.

Hong shared his unfortunate experience and uploaded the dashcam footage on social media. The incident happened on May 6 at around 2 am near Boon Keng MRT station.

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The three passengers allegedly booked a Grab Premium ride from McDonald’s East Coast Park to Boon Keng MRT station. The fare had cost S$53.

Hong chased after the men but was unable to catch up. As he was running, he called Grab to report the incident and was told that the company would reimburse the fare.

Should a Grab driver experience a rogue passenger who refuses to pay the fare that had been agreed upon, Grab gives the following advice:

“Don’t panic and check the mode of payment first. For GrabPay, the fare will be credited to your Wallet automatically. If the mode of payment is Cash and the rider forgets to make payment for the ride, you can call or message the rider within 2 hours after a trip ends to rectify this.”

This is not the first incident of passengers evading taxi fares. In October 2018, a woman promised to pay the S$9.54 fare to a taxi driver but went missing after a week without paying what she owed.

Due to an increase of taxi fare evasions, the Singapore Public Transport Council (PTC) has set up certain measures to deter would-be fare evaders and advises that it is passengers’ responsibility to ensure that they can afford fares prior to rides.

Passengers who do not pay the agreed-upon fare will face composition fines of S$200 and S$400 for the first, and second offences, respectively. These fines will be on top of the restitution payment made for the original unpaid fare.

Repeat offenders who commit three or more offences, or who fail to make restitution payment, will be prosecuted in court. Convicted offenders may be fined S$1,000 to S$2,000 and even face six months of jail.

The PTC advises drivers not to chase after fare evaders for their own safety and encouraged them to file the appropriate police report./TISG

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