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Grab Drivers And Riders Share The Realities Of What It's Like To Work During MCO

"It is kind of cool because there's no traffic jam, no queue, no crowd... but in reality it can be quite tough"

Cover image via

Every day, thousands of food delivery workers spend hours going from restaurants to homes just to make sure we have food on our tables during this Movement Control Order (MCO)

Others like e-hailing drivers continue to serve the country by sending medical officers and essential service workers to their workplace. Some have even taken up new tasks like delivering groceries and parcels to Malaysians.

While all of us #StayAtHome, these drivers and riders are braving the frontlines and serving the country — they are one of our everyday heroes!

To find out what it's really like to work during MCO, we interviewed a few drivers and riders from Grab. Here's what they told us:

1. "When I get to pick up somebody who works on the frontlines like a doctor or a nurse, I feel really proud"

Image via Grab

"Whenever I fetch a doctor or nurse to the hospital, they'll say, 'Thank you sir, because of you it's easier for us to go to work.' Even though their house is less than 2km from the hospital, they appreciate me for sending them."

"Sometimes, when I deliver GrabFood to the hospital, they will give me extra tips. When I tell them I don't want it since I already get my part, they'll say, 'No sir, you must take it, if not we will complain to Grab.' They are always really appreciative."

"That's why I'm thankful that the Grab app exists to support people like me. I can earn some money, meet some honest people. People who appreciate my job even though I'm just a Grab driver."

- Roslee Hadi, 55 years old.

2. "So far, I've gotten RM5 and RM10 tips from customers, and a restaurant even gave me a free set of face mask and sanitiser"

Image via Grab

"Though some people are still a bit phobia, most of the people I've met are nice and genuinely concerned about us. Nevertheless, I always try to keep to the MCO rules of social distancing even if the customers don't mind."

"I started as a GrabFood rider right before MCO, and it's been a challenging but good experience. As for my daily routine, I usually start at 8am, and I'll pass through Aeon to pack my lunch and dinner for the day, then ride all the way until at night."

"Overall, I think we're doing some good work and helping a lot of people. Technologically, I think we are also catching up and moving forward as a country."

- Ng Chee Jin, 36 years old.

3. "One passenger was so grateful I sent him home from the airport at midnight, that he gave me RM100 and told me to keep the change"

"I picked up a Malaysian passenger who had just come back from Ho Chi Minh on a special flight. He'd been stranded there for five days after two of his flights got cancelled. It was really sad because his father passed away when he was stuck in Vietnam, but he was glad he finally managed to make it back."

"When he got into my car, he was so grateful because he was afraid he wouldn't be able to get a Grab from the airport. Although the fare was just RM72, he gave me RM100 and told me to keep the change when I dropped him home."

"That's just one of the many stories. The passengers I've had really appreciate us for being drivers and frontliners during this time. As a precaution, I also make sure my passengers sit in the backseat, wear face masks, and use sanitiser spray whenever they come in."

- Shafik Zuhairi Zul Hassan, 56 years old.

4. "It is kind of cool because there's no traffic jam, no queue, no crowd... but in reality it can be quite tough"

Image via Grab

"I have been a driver for three years, and this is the first time I've had to wait four to five hours just for one job. As you know, it's really a hard time for everyone during this MCO."

"But thankfully, I've had many good experiences doing GrabFood delivery. Some restaurants have offered me drinks, snacks, and lots of customers actually gave me tips."

"This is something I've never experienced before MCO. When I first started doing Grab, I feel like people just took us as taxi drivers. But now, they show more respect to us, and they're really kind and generous. Although the income I get is lower, it's definitely a more fulfilling experience."

- Llyod Chan, 24 years old.

5. "It took me one hour just to send a food delivery because a customer gave me the wrong address"

Image via Grab

"One of the tough challenges is when customers give you the wrong address. This particular customer was telling me, 'Go straight, then up, up, up,' before her brother took the phone and said, 'Sorry, my sister gave you the wrong direction.' I ended up having to travel another 20km to send the food."

"However, as a rider I have a responsibility. So I just try my best to communicate, no questions asked, and make sure the food is delivered no matter how."

"On the bright side, we sometimes get unexpected tips or ang pows from customers. We'll share good experiences with other GrabFood riders in our community Facebook group to encourage each other to be positive during this time."

- Eddie, 55 years old.

All in all, our food delivery drivers and riders are our everyday heroes. Thank you for being on the frontlines for us!

The next time your GrabFood driver or rider shows up with your food, show them how much you appreciate them

All it takes is a small gesture. A nice thank you message, a small tip, or just a kind five-star rating goes a long way! Let’s #RideItOutBersama and we can overcome this together as ONE nation.

Find out more about all of Grab's initiatives to help customers, drivers, riders, and merchants on their website today.

Need some inspiration? Here's something nice a customer did for her food delivery rider: