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Grab proposes pay-per-entry lane dedicated to app-based cars at Saigon airport

Wednesday, January 20, 2021, 14:48 GMT+7
Grab proposes pay-per-entry lane dedicated to app-based cars at Saigon airport
Taxis are seen in the internal lane of Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: C.Trung / Tuoi Tre

As new changes introduced since November at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, which inhibit ride-sharing vehicles from picking up passengers in front of the domestic terminal, has caused major inconvenience to customers, ride-hailing firm Grab proposes a solution where app-based cars pay an extra fee to gain access to a dedicated pick-up lane.

A Grab proposal, which was submitted to the administration body of Tan Son Nhat International Airport at the end of December, suggested a separate lane for all ride-sharing vehicles to pick up and drop off passengers at the terminal gate.

Ride-sharing drivers using this lane will be charged up to VND10,000 before entering the lane, on top of the entrance fee collected at the gate.

Nguyen Thai Hai Van, CEO of Grab Vietnam, also put forward several initiatives to alleviate the inconvenience for drivers and passengers, which include the coordination between ride-sharing firms and the Tan Son Nhat authority to ensure order in the suggested separate lane, as well as a 3-minute time limit for each vehicle to pick up passengers.

As per the current rule introduced on November 14, 2020, only specified types of cars are allowed to use the four internal lanes in front of the domestic terminal.

Lane A, which is closest to the terminal, is restricted for vehicles dropping off departing passengers.

Lanes B and C are reserved for private vehicles picking up passengers after they land, while Lane D, located within the TCP parking structure, is now for taxis.

App-based cars must go to the 3rd, 4th or 5th floors of the parking garage to pick up customers at Tan Son Nhat, which means their customers must cross the internal car lanes and climb up the stairs or wait for the crammed elevators to reach the rides.

Earlier, an insider source told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper that officials at Tan Son Nhat International Airport and Grab were working to tackle the issue.

Leaders of the airport also discussed the issue with Be Group, another ride-sharing company, which is still looking for an optimal solution to orchestrate vehicle flows inside the airport.

Corresponding to Tuoi Tre, Pham Vu Cuong, deputy director of Tan Son Nhat International Airport, said Be Group has devised a plan to manage their vehicles in a separate lane within the airport.

Details of this dedicated lane plan are still being discussed in order to make sure that ride-sharing customers enjoy the same level of convenience as taxi clients.

“In a few days, we will meet again to settle on an implementation date for the lane, which is expected to roll out before the 2021 Lunar New Year,” Cuong said.

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