If you’re looking for a much easier way of getting a taxi in Metro Manila, I think we found what you need. GrabTaxi is an app-based service that allows you to book a taxi directly through your smartphone.

GrabTaxi Screenshot

My favorite feature is that you can monitor where the taxi is at anytime (even while waiting for him to arrive) as its position is tracked via GPS. Assuming the driver keeps his GPS turned on, you can also share the plate number and the GrabTaxi URL to anyone (even on your FB, you stalker-magnet) allowing the recipient/s to track your location at any time. This is dependent on the driver, though, as he would need to keep his GPS turned on.

In my experience, the driver was saving his phone’s battery life so I only saw his taxi (1) when it accepted my booking, so I knew where he was coming from, and (2) when it was close so I knew it was couple of minutes away and I knew I had to go down.

The app also allows you to call the driver who accepted your booking. When the driver was close, I suddenly noticed that the FROM address I entered was incorrect! So I immediately called the driver and told him that I’m actually around the corner. This made pickup a lot more convenient.

Aside from that, the driver’s details are also shown when he accepts your booking. Further security as you can tell your friends/family the name of the driver aside from the plate number.

Should you leave something in the taxi, you have his number and details stored in the app history so you can easily call him anytime. There is a default limit of 4 past bookings, but you can change this. I like the fact that you can change this so you can customize how much space the app is eating up on your phone.

Also, GrabTaxi sends you a summary of the booking details, including the driver’s name, plate number of the taxi, and his cellphone number. If it isn’t stored on your phone, it’s in your inbox.

There is a P70 booking fee you have to pay on top of the metered fair. It’s around P20 more expensive than the normal booking fee some taxi companies charge. For the convenience, it was worth it, in my opinion..

I tried it yesterday and I was pretty pleased with the results. I was able to book a taxi after 3 tries, all in a span of 5 minutes, and the taxi arrived on time as promised by the app. If the GPS was always turned on by the driver, allowing your family/friends to track your location, it would be much better. Also, registration wasn’t instant — my verification code, they text you when you sign up, arrived much later so I was planning to use the service on Thursday but actually got to use it Friday. I recommend you register and activate the app way ahead of your schedule so you’re sure you can book a taxi when you actually have to.

You can download the GrabTaxi application from these links:
Apple iOS
Google Play (Android)
GrabTaxi Website


Proudly Pinoy,


EDIT (7/22): (1) I tried getting a GrabTaxi cab this evening. A driver accepted my booking and the app showed that he was 12 mins away. After around 30 mins of waiting, though, the app still showed that he was 12 minutes away and his location on the map didn’t change. I gave up. I think they should require taxis to keep their GPS and internet turned on so the rider has an idea how far away the taxi is. I ended up flagging down another taxi. (2) GrabTaxi does have a functionality to set what time you want to be fetched. I think that makes the service more valuable as the taxi should have enough time to get to you. I’ll try that tomorrow.

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About The Author

EJ is an IT manager by day, and Plants vs Zombies addict by night. Oh and he blogs too. Through ManilaBlogs.com, EJ wants to help the Pinoy create and maintain his own blog. The Pinoy blogging community is a very friendly one and this is his contribution! He's also the main technical person behind the ManilaReviews, ManilaFitness, and ManilaBlogs. Geek? Di naman masyado.

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