Back in July, Grab announced that it would be revising its GrabRewards points system. Its announcement highlighted two major changes: GrabRewards points will no longer expire as long as you continue using Grab services, and that the GrabRewards points earned for every RM1 spent will be reduced.
Grab users used to earn 20 GrabRewards points for every RM1 they spent on GrabPay transactions in-store, and unused points also used to have an expiry date on them, namely at the end of the next Reward Period after they were earned.
The two reward periods are from January to June, and July to December.
GrabRewards later introduced Activity Based Points Expiry (ABPE), which they claimed was a new program to extend the life of your GrabRewards points.
As long as a user makes 1 Grab transaction within the next 3 months of their last transaction, they can continue accumulating their points.
While the new points expiry system still stands, what has changed is the number of points earned per RM1 spent in-store using GrabPay.
Fewer Points Earned As Time Goes On
Come 1 October, Grab is reducing the points rate from 20 points to 9 points (for Platinum members) earned for every RM1 spent using GrabPay in-store, for online shopping, and to top-up mobile prepaid credits.
They’re calling this the GrabPay Year End Bonus, and it will last from 1 October to 31 December 2019.
Depending on which member tier you’re in, the point rate you’ll be subjected to is different. For regular and Silver Grab members, you’ll earn 4.5 points for every RM1 spent while Gold members earn 6.75 points per RM1. Platinum members get to enjoy 9 points per RM1 spent using GrabPay.
Another new change is that all members, regardless of tier, can now redeem points for Grab Rides and GrabFood starting at 600 points.
600 points will give you RM5 off the two Grab services, 1,200 points will give you RM10 off, and 1,800 points will give you RM15 off.
Fewer Points Means Less Cashback
Based off of this info, a Facebook user called Euginn Lim calculated the differences in cashback and relayed the results in a post.
According to his calculations, back when Grab was still rewarding users with 20 points per RM1 spent, users would receive a 16.9% cashback. He calculated this using the fact that 600 points award you RM5 off Grab Rides or GrabFood.
If a user spent RM100 before 30 September (after which the GrabRewards point rate was reduced), they would have earned 2,000 points. At the time, only 590 points were needed to redeem RM5, so this meant that someone with 2,000 points was able to redeem RM16.90 worth of Grab services. He then equated this to 16.9% cashback.
With Grab’s current rewards system, Euginn calculated that users will only be able to get a 7.5% cashback based on how spending RM100 earns you 900 points.
He also claimed that starting from 1 January 2020 onwards, users will only be able to earn 3 points for every RM1 spent.
This means that if someone were to spend RM100 in a store, they’ll only be able to earn 300 points, half of the minimum points needed to redeem RM5.
He said that this would end up with Grab’s cashback rate dropping from 16.9% before 30 September to 7.5% after 1 October, and further dropping to a “pathetic” 2.5% cashback rate for Platinum members once we enter 2020.
Euginn went on to say that at the moment, the 7.5% cashback rate is still reasonable to him and worth using GrabPay for, but once 31 December has passed, he sees no more incentive to use it and earn GrabRewards.
RinggitPlus believes the main reason for Grab reducing its multiplier rate for earning GrabRewards points is because keeping to the pre-October points accumulation mechanism after introducing the system of non-expiring points would have made the entire ecosystem unsustainable.
We’ve reached out to a Grab representative and Euginn to verify the information regarding his claim about Grab’s reward system come 1 January 2020, but have received no response yet. We’ll update this piece when they reply.
- You can read more about what we’ve written on Grab here.