In January 2020, Grab has announced a major revamp of its GrabRewards Programme, which will come into effect from 2nd March 2020. This revamp will affect earning rates and point redemptions.
The changes are significant, especially for those who frequently use its services such as Grab rides and GrabFood, or for those who have recently signed up for the new GrabPay MasterCard, to collect and redeem GrabReward Points.
In this article, we will go through the changes to the points rewarding system, and see who the biggest losers will be in this round of revamp.
#1 GrabRewards Points Per Transaction
For a start, Grab users will stand to earn lesser GrabRewards Points with every eligible transaction.
Currently, Grab offers different tiers of point-earning rates for every dollar spent on Grab rides, GrabFood, GrabExpress and GrabPay in-store purchases.
|Grab rides paid with cash||1||1||1.5||2|
|GrabPay in-store payment||5||5||7.5||10|
|GrabFood paid with cash||1||1||1||1|
However, the revamp will see a standardised amount of points being awarded for every dollar spent throughout all of Grab’s services. In addition, only transactions made via GrabPay or GrabPay MasterCard will be eligible for GrabReward points.
|Every $1 worth of Grab Transaction made via GrabPay or GrabPay MasterCard||2||2||3||4|
While the revamp makes things less sweet for most users, Platinum members will see themselves taking the biggest hit, with a 60% cut in getting points for using GrabPay in their purchases in-store.
In addition, Grab users who use cash to pay for their Grab rides or GrabFood purchases are able to earn points, albeit lower as compared to using GrabPay. After the revamp, it will now be a requirement to use GrabPay for transactions in order to earn points. That said, Grab users who makes a switch to using GrabPay, can stand to earn up to 4 times more points as compared with using cash to pay for their transactions.
Read Also: Complete Guide To Grab Subscription Plans
#2 Points Redemption
On the other hand, it will now cost more for Grab users to redeem GrabRewards. In addition, there will also be no preferential redemption rates for members who are of a higher tier.
Currently, points redemptions are tiered based on the status of the membership, with Platinum members enjoying a lower points redemption for vouchers.
|$1 voucher||$5 voucher||$10 voucher|
However, the revamp of the programme will see the removal of tiered points redemption, and vouchers will be redeemed based on a uniform rate through all membership tiers.
|Redemption||$1 voucher||$5 voucher||$10 voucher|
The biggest losers from this rule change will probably be the Platinum members because they now have to take the biggest increment of an additional 1,400 points to redeem a $10 voucher. This is equivalent to an increase of 39% in the cost of redemption of points.
Currently, a Platinum member will only be required to spend $360 using GrabPay for in-store payment to earn 3,600 points in exchange for a $10 voucher. However, under the new points system, the same member will have to spend $1,250 in order to chalk up 5,000 points to redeem the $10 voucher.
#3 Unlocking of Membership Tiers
Conversely, the reduction of points being awarded will also mean having to spend more on Grab transactions to unlock and maintain each membership tier.
Presuming we take on the existing rate of 10 points for every $1 spent on GrabPay in-store transactions, these are the points required for each membership tier to earn to be upgraded to the next level.
|Upgrade of Membership||Silver||Gold||Platinum|
|Spending required ($)||$60||$240||$600|
However, the new rates would also mean one would be required to spend more to unlock to the next tier.
|Upgrade of Membership||Silver||Gold||Platinum|
|Spending required ($)||$150||$600||$1,500|
Given the increment in spending, it would require 1.5 times more than the existing arrangement across the board to be upgraded to the next tier.
#4 Grab Rewards Flash Sale (And A New Merchant Partner)
Whilst having to contend with a major devaluation of points and increased spending to upgrade to the next tier or redeem vouchers, Grab has also introduced new initiatives for members to earn points and maximise their points usage.
For instance, Grab has introduced “Challenges”, touted as a “brand new and exciting play-to-win feature” on the Grab app.
Grab users can access the challenge by activating on their app and complete assigned tasks (for example taking 10 Grab rides in a week), in order to earn additional points or vouchers for their spending in-app.
In addition, Grab has also introduced the GrabRewards Flash sale, where Grab users can enjoy up to 50% savings on their redemption.
On top of the new in-app promotions, Grab has also roped in a new partner – international hotel chain Accor – into their catalogue. The new partnership will enable Grab users to redeem 1900 GrabRewards points for 160 Accor Rewards points.
Currently, Grab users can use their GrabRewards to redeem KrisFlyer miles. The including of Accor as a new partner may be good news for frequent travellers.
The revamp of GrabRewards may mean more spending to maintain or upgrade to the next membership status.
Given the new direction, Grab is also running new campaigns and promotions to help users maximise their points usage. Also, the introduction of a new lifestyle partner may indicate Grab’s continuous lookout for a variety of rewards for Grab users.
But for those who are not completely convinced of the new structure, the best option they can exercise is to make full use of their membership tiers and points before the revamp kicks in on 2 March 2020.