SOUTHEAST Asian ride-hailing app Grab is on track to achieving its goal of becoming the region’s “everyday super app”.
The company just announced it is officially entering the travel industry with a slew of new features including hotel bookings.
In greater detail, the four new features are trip planning, hotel booking, on-demand video streaming and movie tickets. Its hotel bookings are powered by Agoda and Booking.com while its video-streaming service and movie-ticketing platform are fruits of Grab’s partnerships with HOOQ and Indian startup BookMyShow respectively.
Agoda went live Tuesday while Booking.com will kick in by the second quarter. 28 million hotel rooms and accommodations worldwide listed on Booking.com and Agoda will be integrated into the Grab app. Booking Holdings, which owns the two online travel agencies, invested US$200 million in Grab last year.
Users can expect exclusive hotel offers, transport discounts, and free insurance coverage. Platinum and gold members of its GrabRewards loyalty program will be offered discounted room rates when making reservations via Booking.com.
Through its video-streaming feature, users will be able to enjoy two months of free video-streaming and a discounted monthly rate, as well as free-to-access content. Its tickets service, on the other hand, will enable users to search, compare and buy tickets across Singapore’s main cinema chains. In future, tickets to other events will also be made available on the Grab app.
“With more than 500 GrabPlatform partners by the end of the year, we’re building an ecosystem that will truly be a force to be reckoned with, an ecosystem that value-adds and serves everyone on our platform. Be it drivers, merchants, users or partners,” Grab product and design group head Jerald Singh was quoted as saying.
“When you are able to book your hotel with Grab, not only are you able to get that hotel booked, but now we’re able to seamlessly book your ride to the airport, to the hotel because we know where you’re heading, and once you’re at the hotel, we’re able to give you options nearby, recommend restaurants that are close by, get food delivered to your hotel, and easily and seamlessly give you a ride to where in the city you want go to,” Singh told Skift.
To add on, Grab is expected to launch flight bookings within the year. “On the flights side, it’s something we’re absolutely looking at as well. It’s on the roadmap and launching hopefully in the next several months as an add-on to hotel bookings,” Skift quoted Singh as saying.
All four services will be progressively rolled out across Southeast Asian markets by June this year.