Everyone has a part to play in keeping our youngest – and most vulnerable – passengers safe. Here’s what you can do.
With the Chinese New Year holidays coming up, you’ll probably be on the move with your family – kids included.
An article came out today which highlights an important, but overlooked, traffic rule in Singapore: For safety reasons, juniors under 1.35m need appropriate restraints or booster seats in private hire cars.
Taxis are exempt from this, but must ensure that children sit in the rear seat. Passengers may also bring their own child car seat onboard taxis – and we strongly encourage this.
We believe everyone has a part to play in ensuring a child’s safety from the moment they step into a car.
Many of us at Grab are parents ourselves. And as Southeast Asia’s largest ride-hailing app, we’re serious about doing our bit.
Since last year, we have been beta-testing our GrabFamily service. We have fitted a select number of GrabCars with Mifold booster seats, catering to juniors between four and seven years old. Our dedicated drivers have been trained to assist you in buckling up your child.
Check out how the Mifold booster seat works in this explanatory video.
In our conversations with passengers, we notice that parents with younger kids below four often already travel with child car seats that double up as prams. Those with slightly older children however, are less aware of the need for child safety restraints.
GrabFamily is our way of providing these parents an extra service.
If you have a young child, what else can you do to ensure a safe ride for your little one? We have a couple of suggestions.
1. Make an advanced booking with GrabFamily
We value any feedback on our GrabFamily service. We are seeing positive results from our ongoing beta test and are encouraged to scale up the GrabFamily service over the next few months. We hope to share more details with you soon. In the meantime, do make an advanced booking to increase your chances of getting a ride.
2. Introduce your child to a car seat early on
Through our conversations with parents, we have found that younger children prefer a car seat they are used to. Because it takes time to condition them to be buckled into a car seat, invest in one early. And if junior has a seat he / she already likes, bring it along during your next Grab ride.
3. Inform our drivers if you’re travelling with young kids
Leave them a note when making your booking, or send them a message using our GrabChat function. This helps them assess early on if they can accept your ride, giving you more time to make alternative arrangements if needed.
Everyone plays a part in safety. Especially for our most precious – and vulnerable – passengers. So take the necessary precautions and travel safe this long weekend!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why does GrabFamily cater only to 4 to 7 year olds? What about younger children?
Our market surveys suggest that parents with younger children prefer using their own child car seats. However once their child grows older, there is lack of awareness of how unsafe it is for their children to travel without appropriate booster seats. That’s why we have decided to focus our efforts in this area, as we monitor the progress of GrabFamily and consider expanding the service to 0 to 3 year olds in the future.
Will Grab introduce baby seats?
We don’t rule it out, but we will make our decision based on these considerations:
(i) We believe that younger children have a strong attachment to people and objects they are familiar with. They may resist a foreign child car seat, putting parents and drivers in a stressful situation – we know it’s not easy handling a young child single-handedly! That’s why we encourage parents to invest in a child car seat early, because it takes time to condition children to be buckled into one. For parents who already own one, please bring it along during your next Grab ride.
(ii) When evaluating child car seats for younger children, we assess whether they’re intuitive for drivers and parents to use, compatible with different car models, and offer adequate protection for children. It’s tough, but worth it to give you the best possible service. Until we find a product that fulfils these requirements, we hope parents can bring their own during their next ride with us.
Does that mean I shouldn’t take GrabCar at all if I have kids?
The Road Traffic Act in Singapore states that anyone under 1.35m must use a child safety restraint in a private vehicle. We encourage responsible behaviour and hope to work together with parents and our drivers to ensure safer rides for juniors.