11 November 2019

Grabbing to $11,000 a month

Ah no, I did not spend $11,000 a month taking Grab. No, no, no.

I came across yet another interesting person when I took a Grab ride home. It started with a simple question on whether he drove this as a fulltime job. I was surprised to learn that he drove 7 days a week, 15 hours a day!  That's hard work.

When asked how much he made, he said it used to be $15,000 a month when incentives were good. This was net of expenses. But these days, he could only make $11,000 a month. That is quite an impressive income as a Grab driver. I was really surprised he could make that much. I don't recall ever hearing of a Grab driver who could make more than $5,000 a month till today.

Given his income level, I was curious if he made voluntary contributions to CPF. He laughed and shared that he has more than enough and didn't need to do so.

He used to own a commercial laundry service. It's those industrial class type that service hotels. A few years back, he got an offer to buy out his business. The offer was the equivalent of 10 years of income. As he could only make 6% ROI on his business, the offer was too good to refuse. So he sold off and cashed out.

[More on his laundry business another day]

Being a divorcee and with a daughter already in her final year in the University, he didn't have much that occupied his time. So he was happy to be a Grab driver, and even more so because he liked to drive. He quipped that while he was driving his beaten-up car for Grab service, his daughter drove their family's BMW to school.

He takes breaks once in a while, usually a few months at a go, traveling overseas, alone.

Since he started driving, he has cut down on his drinking and smoking. He used to drink everyday. It was probably killing his liver. He now hardly drank. Smoking was still a habit, but he had cut down from two packets a day, to less than half a packet. It's certainly an improvement. I wish him good health.

A pleasant late evening ride.


Anonymous said...

11k/month for driving Grab?! That's a lot of $$

Jimmy L said...

gd insight, thanks for sharing
11k/mth for hard work grab driving is worth it
all along i thot they cant earn so much

Lizardo said...

Jimmy L,

I was just as surprised he could hit that kind of pay driving Grab. But he works really really hard.

Lizardo said...


It is a lot of $$. Comes with putting in many hours and with minimal family interactions.

Victor said...

I can imagine how tough and tiring it is driving 15 hours a day, 7 days a week, no matter how much one likes to drive. One is risking burnout, fatigue and damage to one’s health. Why work so hard when you are not really in need of the money? I would rather enjoy life more and have more time to pamper myself.

Lizardo said...


Indeed. That gentleman seems like he was contented to work at this pace as it keeps him actively connected. I suspect he does not find sanctuary at home.

Jimmy said...

No matter how the person enjoy driving, 15 hrs on the road is not the fun thing to do. It is a service industry and the money he made is hard-money. I wonder what is the point of his daughter driving a BMW to school.

Lizardo said...


Hard-earned money indeed.

Parents can sometimes spoil their kids silly?

Anonymous said...

I've heard of people who stay in HDB and rent out their GCB. Anyone else heard of such stories?