Singapore: Uber fares increase islandwide following Grab app outage

The Uber logo is seen on a screen in Singapore Thomas White/Reuters

Following the increase in price of rides for Grab's ride-hailing app in some areas, Uber fares surged island-wide on Tuesday evening in Singapore.

The sudden rise in Grab ride charge affected the customers in several Southeast Asian countries due to disruption of the ride-hailing platform that lasted for at least three hours.

Channel NewsAsia quoted a private hire car driver, who did not wish to be identified, as saying that Uber fares spiked to twice the usual fare amount in areas such as Singapore's central business district. In addition to this, the Pasir Panjang area also saw surges of 2.2 times the regular fare.

According to the man, who drives for both Uber and Grab, the Grab drivers' app and passenger app had been unresponsive since 8pm. "That's why I have to do both Uber and Grab - for survival and putting food on the table for my family," he told Chanel NewsAsia.

Reports said that an UberFlash ride from Tuas South to Changi Airport cost S$169 by 10.20 pm. Reportedly, the price hike was due to a brief 4.3-time surge of the regular fare.

The Uber website stated that the fares may increase when there is high demand for rides, "to make sure those who need a ride can get one".

On April 8, Grab is scheduled to take over Uber's Southeast Asia operations and assets.