2008/02/23

No One Likes the New Taxis

It seems like the residents of Abu Dhabi have the same reaction to the new taxis that I did:
Residents in the Capital are dissatisfied with the new taxi services that were launched a few months ago.

While speaking to several commuters, Khaleej Times found out the reasons for their disappointment. Most of those spoken to were unanimous in their views that the taxis’ fares had doubled, registering an increase of 100 per cent compared to the old taxis.
I agree wholeheartedly. It is interesting to note that some of the people interviewed said that they are now walking as much as 4 kilometers because they cannot afford the new fares. So you have to think that this decision could quite easily increase the pedestrian accident rate, especially as the roads here a very unfriendly for pedestrians, not to mention the potential for heatstroke when the temperatures increase.
In response to these complaints and demands, Lieutenant-Colonel Mohammed Maiouf Al Kotbi, manager of drivers’ licensing and vehicles in the General Headquarters of Abu Dhabi Police, said the decision of the new taxi services came as a result of the demands and requests of the Abu Dhabi residents, as they frequently complained about the behaviour of many of the old taxi drivers. "We received so many complaints from people that the drivers of the old taxis refused to stop for passengers or that they refused to drive outside the city centre or in crowded areas," said Lt-Col. Al Kotbi.

"For these reasons people demanded a new taxi system and the Abu Dhabi Police responded by launching the new taxi service, which aims to solve the problems," he added.

Lt-Col. Al Kotbi also pointed out that the new taxi project allows for more confidence between passengers and drivers, who are trained to be cooperative and friendly. "The problem of doubling the taxi fare is unacceptable and the passengers are entitled to get a receipt for the payment and, in case of increasing the fairs, they should come to the police," he said.
As I pointed out before, the new taxis are also charging by the hour, which seems, in my limited experience, when combined with the increased milage rate, to be the cause the doubling.

I'm not sure exactly why the two systems cannot run together either; if one wants to pay extra for a cleaner car with a more courteous driver, great. But for those who cannot, why get rid of the older system? For that matter, why make us change in Al Ain for problems that we were not having? I have never had or heard of a driver refusing a fare to anywhere in Al Ain. Has anyone ever that this experience?

1 comment:

Keefieboy said...

Just bizarre: 'the public demanded a doubling of taxi fares?' Methinks not. And where else in the world does a Police Force get involved in running a taxi service?