Thursday, December 04, 2014

Coming Soon To Taxi Leaks, Undercover Uber.

Taxi leaks will soon have a new regular contributor, but this time it's not a Taxi driver. 

Our new feature coming soon, will be called; 

We will soon be bringing you the inside story of this company operating on the very fringes of PH legislation. 

What we already know:

Many in the trade are asking the question "how can these drivers make a living, on such low pricing structure?

Well the truth is they can't....and they don't. In all honesty it's a myth that Uber operate at a fraction of the price or a real Taxi. Most of the drivers shift involves some form of surge pricing where the advertised price is doubled, trebled and even quadrupled on certain occasions. 

Here is a screen shot of a recent journey undertaken in an Uber car. Waterloo station to Leicester sq, it went £32 using Uber's wonderful meter, with a 2.5 surge using a rip off route, suggested by uber nav. This is not uncommon, as seen on many posts on Twitter and FaceBook. 


               How is this technology? 
          Looks more like daylight robbery!

Another tool in their arsenal is the fact that journey prices do not relate to a fixed estimate but final pricing is set by a combination of time and distanced traveled, achieved by use of a Taxi meter embedded in the drivers phone. Of course, anyone who has ever used a Sat-Nav, will know precisely how comical some of the routs offered by the device can be. 

The use of a Taxi meter is banned in PHVs, but although we know this its a meter, plus Boris has said its a meter and even Uber call it a meter, TfL's wonderful legal team have had to apply for a High Court definition as they say they are not sure. 

TfL's High Court action is currently on standby as the LTDA have taken out private prosecutions against a number of Uber Drivers. These cases were heard at Westminster Magistrates Court and has now been sent up to the High Court to be heard. 

Sat-Navs can be useful when you have no idea how to get from A to B, but that's about it. As long as you are not giving a service based on mileage taken. If a company is dependent on this type of device, then a fixed price, system is the fairest option. But when you charge for distance travelled, then using a GPS guided Sat-Nav can mean the passengers are literally being defrauded. 

The biggest danger with this service is that Uber have put an army of drivers on the street with very little driving skills and virtually no knowledge of the city what so ever. Making them solely dependent on the services of the Uber Sat-Nav. 

We have seen on social media literally hundreds of horror stories where passengers have been taken miles out of their way and charged enormous amounts for the pleasure. Uber drivers follow the Sat-Navs like sheep and there have been many horrendous accidents as they drive up one way streets in the wrong direction. 

The culture of Private Hire drivers availing themselves of Sat-Nav's GPS technology in order to compete with regular, trained, licensed Taxi drivers, is highly dangerous as they spend most of the journey with their eyes transfixed on their appliance screen.

This operation could have/ should have been stopped before it started. But unlike other licensing authorities around Europe and North America, spineless TfL have been frighten off by the money men behind this company.
The fact their (TfL's) legal team have rarely won a case bought against a PH operator, also doesn't help.

Something else we noticed:
Uber have no public telephone number.
They have no email address.
They also have no contact person.

How do customers voice complaints ?

TfL do not deal directly with Private Hire customer complaints, they send them on to the operator to deal with. 
Uber, in their terms and conditions say they are not responsible for driver complaints and stipulate the journey is soley a contract between driver and customer. 
Who actually sorts out these complaints ?


Anonymous said...

This is a total joke maybe uber drivers don't like Covent garden Or don't know there way through it more like and yet TFL turn a blind eye as usual great post Jim

Battersea bob said...

TFL are absolutely useless,not fit for the job.they seek to destroy and they will.we do the job for life minicabs are a revolving door of labour.get rid if the London cabbie and imagine 200.000 mini cabs on the street,nobody making any money except TFL ,all those license fees and the turn over of drivers......I don't know what the answer to these idiots is but there must be someone somewhere that knows what to do and how to do it...I go to work completely depressed and demoralised ,it's not right and it's not fair to be treated like this.i have been thirty six years in the job but I don't know how much longer I can take this complete lack of respect .we all suffered to do the kol and we should be protected...

Veritas said...

Yep superb, we need to get this out there to the media.

Anonymous said...

Tfl don't like demo's,well they wont like it when drivers finally find there balls & lock the cabs up & walk away--now that type of demo cant be far away??

Anonymous said...

Who does TFL answer to??

Wonder why the trades just cant go above there heads with any evidence that they may have and present it,
to show that they are not fit for purpose.

The met used to run the show once and it got taken out of there hands and handed to TFL, so why cant it get taken from TFL and given to another body that represents fairness.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12.49 no balls in the trade only whingers who do nothing. Everyone knows what action is needed but the trade orgs wont take it because it might jeopardise a lucrative non job at tfl for their leaders.

Gerald Coba said...

Anon 4:05 That's not 100% correct, as after Davis found he is no longer in the queue for the TfL board seat, that was always going to McNamara, the LCDC are trying to be seen as more pro-active.