Uber has announced that they their drivers can now accept cash for payments in Singapore. It will be slowly rolled out to users and drivers in the apps, but soon everyone will be able to book rides with cash payments.
Their statement about why this matters to Singapore, hits the nail right on the head:
Even though credit cards are common you might be surprised to learn that cash payments currently make up over 30% of all transactions on the island-state.1 By introducing this experiment, we discovered four simple ways that cash could make a little bit easier for everyone who needs a safe, reliable ride in Singapore.
Removing the fear factor for first time riders
You told us you still have concerns about credit cards, and we listened. We want every Singaporean to have the freedom to choose the way they travel, and cash is a truly inclusive way to let everyone move around their city easily
No credit card? No worries.
Cash opens doors for more Singaporeans to take their first ride, and have a quality experience on Uber, whether you’re busy Mum, a student without a credit card or a senior citizen who’s more comfortable with cash
Showing more love to heartland neighbourhoods
We’ve seen in Uber cities around the region that cash payments can increase the adoption rate of new riders outside core service areas by an average 45% – that shows more love to more neighbourhoods and we think the heartlands could use even more UberLOVE
They left one thing out in their statement however, they need to do this in order to counteract against Grab which is now accepting credit cards.
With Grab taking credit cards and Uber accepting cash, there is now very little difference between Grab and Uber with regard to user experience. The battle will come down to who has better fares and can deliver cars faster.
On both of these these fronts we can expect a race to the bottom as these two fierce competitors battle against each other to steal riders and drivers.