Gojek in Singapore: A seamless user experience and lower fares for the ride-hailing app
Talk of the town
Jakarta's tech start-up Gojek's official launch in Singapore was one of those "stop everything" moments. It was a highly anticipated entrant for starters; with most of the public opinion against what-used-to-be the monopoly ride-sharing service, Grab. We hated the unreasonable surges, the fact that we had no promo codes and its miniscule efforts to upgrade the user experience. No, GrabFood didn't help one bit.
To put it bluntly, Gojek had pretty small shoes to fill. Its arrival meant that it would provide a promising transport alternative and more importantly, it would pose some tough competition for Grab to fuel more attractive promo codes and price wars. Either way, the user (i.e. us) wins.
Last week, Gojek launched a beta version — which meant that not everyone in Singapore could get access to it. Its staggered approach wasn't a tease, but more of a foolproof strategy to ensure a smooth entry into Singapore and also to work out the kinks that the first batch of users experienced. First criteria: only Eastsiders get first dibs. Second criteria: DBS/POSB members get five dollars off their first two rides. Lucky for me, I ticked both boxes.
Perhaps it was the excitement goggles, the interface was easy on the eyes. It was simple, concise sans the clutter of excess services that a transport app didn't need. Pick-up locations are well firmed up here — meaning the user has to specify his or her location as compared to the hazy impressions of where your supposed pin would be at.
Ratings? Back for good. Never thought I would miss seeing a 4.9 figure but spotting it on my first Gojek driver made me exceptionally sentimental (just like typical Uber fashion). The same goes at the end of the ride, you give a rating and point out the reasons why. It's helpful feedback that doesn't get lost within the web of customer service calls. Like Uber, it's the transport app that actually listens and reflects the rider's experience.
For now, Gojek is seemingly off to a peachy start. No surges, lower fares in comparison to its competitors. If the price wars continue to play out well, we might actually be optimistic about the future.
Now available on iOS and Android.