Grab has announced that will begin charging customers a fee if they cancel a ride after five minutes of getting a driver, or if they are beyond five minutes late to their ride and the driver has to cancel as a result of that delay.

As outlined in its updated passenger cancellation policy, which takes effect from March 25, the company said passengers who cancel a ride after a five minute period (or three minutes, in the case of GrabShare) will be charged a cancellation fee ranging from RM3 to RM5, depending on the service booked and the type of vehicle that is employed.

For GrabCar, JustGrab, GrabShare, GrabTaxi (metered or executive) and GrabCar Plus, the cancellation fee is RM3, while that for a six-seater GrabCar/JustGrab and 10-seater JustGrab will be RM4. As for GrabCar Premium or GrabCar Luxe, the fee is RM5.

The ride service provider said that in the case of passengers showing up late, a five minute leeway (or three minutes on GrabShare) is provided. If a passenger does not show up by then and the driver eventually cancels the ride, the passenger will be charged RM5.

If a customer is on GrabPay, the amount will be deducted directly from his/her GrabPay credits balance or credit/debit card. For those using cash, the fee will be added automatically to the their fare on the next ride – the driver on the next trip will be informed to collect this fee on Grab’s behalf to compensate the driver for the previous ride that was cancelled. The company added that 100% of the cancellation fee goes to the driver to compensate for his or her time on the road.

The company said that any cancellations made within five minutes of getting a driver will not have any fee imposed. Cancellation fees will also be waived if a driver does not arrive within 10 minutes after the first-shown estimated time of arrival.

For example, if a customer is allocated a driver who is three minutes away but has to wait for more than 13 minutes for the driver, and finally cancels the booking, the fee will be waived. Nonetheless, in situations where the driver is taking too long to arrive and the customer wants to cancel, the company encourages the customer to first check in with the driver via call or GrabChat.

The company said customers need not fear that they will be charged in cases where the driver fails to get to the correct pick-up location or when a driver does not adhere to – or cancel the ride earlier than – the designated wait time period. It said if a driver cancels the ride before this waiting time is up, the customer will not be charged, but the necessary penalty against the driver will be taken.

Grab said it expects the policy update to affect less than 1% of bookings, saying that most passengers don’t cancel after booking.