25 Sep
Why are more people preferring app based taxis above the traditional cabs?

What is a taxi?

A taxi is a vehicle with a driver which is used for hire for commuting usually not very long distances. The maximum number of people who may share the ride is limited to http://www.ridester.com/ the number of people that can lawfully occupy the vehicle that is being used as a taxi.A taxi in today’s parlance usually means a four wheeled automobile. Depending on the model of the car, ranging from a hatchback to a sedan it may seat comfortably about 4 to 8 people.

A taxi provides on demand transportation:

A taxi or a cab (which is used alternatively) helps people commute from one destination to another according to the wishes of the passengers. Thus, it is one of the main differences that set it apart from the public transport system like a bus or a tram, where the pickup point and the destination are pre determined by the transport corporations and cannot be altered according to the wishes of the passenger. In other words, the passenger cannot decide in a public transport where he wants to board or alight.

The introduction of crowd taxis:

In March of 2009, Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp started a company called Uber in San Francisco in the US. The company they started was a Multinational Online Transport networking company which has developed and also operates the very famous mobile app called Uber.

How does the Uber mobile app work?

The Uber mobile app allows the passenger to use his smart phone and android device to hire a taxi by generating a trip request. The application facilitates the transfer of the generated request to the taxi driver who is closest to the place from where the passenger is sending the request from. The mobile application determines the location of the passenger and the location of the Uber taxi by means of GPS tracking system.

The Uber driver who is closest to the passenger sending the request is alerted immediately about the impending ride and if he prefers to take the passenger to his destination then he may accept the ride or he also has the option of declining to take the ride for whatever reasons.

In case the driver accepts he will turn up in the shortest possible time because, remember, the taxi is closest to the passenger that is why it has received the ride request. Even the passenger has the option to cancel the ride but there is a catch. The passenger may cancel the taxi within five minutes from the driver’s acceptance of the offer. Any more delay in cancellation beyond five minutes, Uber charges a flat 20% for the cancellation. The reason for this being that the driver has already started for his trip towards the passenger by then.   

Private taxis or “Pirate taxis”?

Surprisingly, within a short span of seven years alone, Uber has been able to make its presence felt in the transport sector by not only being professionally managed and technologically driven but also by turning out to be far cheaper than the traditional taxis that have been running for such a long time.Till the time that Uber was introduced, traditional taxis were running like monopoly on the roads. Even though their services left a lot more to be asked, there was not much the passenger could do than to mutter it all under his breath.

Thanks to the introduction of crowd taxis

Like Uber and various other private app based taxis operators, the conditions of travel are changing and the passengers are feeling that at last their prayers have been answered. A lot of other companies that have started to function like Uber have spawned a big industry of private taxi players. The process is now scientifically referred to as Uberification.

The reaction of traditional taxi drivers:

Unfortunately, the traditional taxi drivers are not very impressed with the app based taxi service because they think that they are being deprived of their custom because the people now prefer to travel savvier by booking cabs through their phones itself.Additionally, the taxi drivers feel that while they are being regularized and have to follow rules that including not allowing them to charge passengers anything beyond the government- determined fare, the private taxis are operating their vehicles without having to follow any regulation.

Facing dissent:

Unfortunately, Uber and other crowd taxis have got themselves into a lot of trouble in countries like India, London, Paris and Berlin where taxi union have staged long protests and tools down strikes. Governments of various countries have also supported the taxi unions and as of now the crowd taxis are banned in Berlin and Seoul until further notice.But patrons of the crowd taxis swear that Uber and other taxis deserve applause because they provide what the customer deserves. On being quizzed, these were the pointers that came to the forefront.