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Old 26th November 2014, 00:22   #31
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by StepUP! View Post
In Pune they have taxi4Sure which charges only Rs 49 for up to 4kms travel!
It is the same in Delhi and other metro cities. TFS charges Rs. 49/- for the first 4km's and Rs. 14/- per km thereafter. I've used their services many a times for Airport trips and even got picked up once within 10 mins of booking. Never faced any issues of cancellation till now. I know they are aggregators and do not own their own fleet, but why to complain when we are getting effective and efficient services.
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Old 26th November 2014, 00:43   #32
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Best thing to come out of this is death of the auto rickshaw is near . Taxi For Sure is about to launch Nano based cabs which should help bring down the costs to the level of a typical autorickshaw. Others cab operators should follow suite.

I do hope the demise of the Auto is hastened by the govt increasing the fares of the rickshaw by about 20-25%. Thats one price rise I would gladly welcome !
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Old 26th November 2014, 03:11   #33
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Interesting and fast paced developments!

As far as the debate of selling off personal cars and depending on cabs goes, I think it will depend on the status-of-owning-car vs. practicality mentality.

If you look at it, two-wheelers are still a very, very prominent mode of transport; I bet a sizable amount of families in urban India still don't own a 4-wheeler.

The other thing is, how many car-owners drive to work? Most depend on public or company transport.

For this model, two things are extremely important:
1) Ease and affordability of renting cars for short-term (hours/days) and long-term (months)
2) Difficulty in owning a car should be very high

At least in the US, its probably only NY, SF and to a small extent LA and Chicago where people ditch personal cars and solely depend on cabs.

This industry definitely has tremendous potential though.
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Old 26th November 2014, 07:54   #34
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

I have used Uber 6 times now and it's been convenient & cost effective.

To & fro trips from Hoodi to Ritz in Downtown costed me 330 Rs. If I had used normal service one way would have cost me that much.

They only pick customers who are near by, so that their wait & travel time is significantly low and that's their model. So if you don't see no cars available in certain locations, it means not too many folks are using this service in that locality.

More you use these new services the better is the availability across all areas.

Downside though is you can't pre-book them (Ola does provide that option) so might still have to be dependent on normal taxi providers.

I hope we get to a situation where more and more people use these services & availability wont be a factor.

Mind you these cars are anyway on street, instead of adding mine to existing traffic, I would rather use the one on street & get rid pain of driving in Bengaluru traffic.
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Old 26th November 2014, 07:57   #35
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Default

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Originally Posted by ashwin49 View Post
Best thing to come out of this is death of the auto rickshaw is near . Taxi For Sure is about to launch Nano based cabs which should help bring down the costs to the level of a typical autorickshaw.
On the contrary, I read an article recently that Uber is contemplating bringing in auto rickshaws under there wing too. To be Frank if these chaps can be controlled and monitored with no hassle with fares or the usual excuse of not going to your destination etc then I don't mind them doing this.
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Old 26th November 2014, 09:53   #36
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Default Meru cabs

A month back i hired a Meru cab from Whitefield to my place. Since the journey was a long one started chatting with the driver and came to know some not so pleasant details. This info is for Bangalore. Dunno about other cities.

The green Meru cabs are not allowed to ply to Airport. They are relegated to city duty only. The white ones are the those which are allowed to go to Airport. Ola ,Easy cabs, Uber etc are not allowed to park at the taxi lot in airport and wait to get customers. They can just drop and if lucky pick up others during return

The high charge of Rs 19.5 Rs/km is because of the amount they have to pay to the Airport authorities to stay and wait at the airport. But the catch is even normal city ride customers are made to pay the same cost.

Meru gets accident vehicles of Logan,Verito etc, refurbishes them, paints them green and sells them to the drivers at 50K - 1Lakh depending on the condition . Inturn the driver has to pay Meru 100 bucks daily for 10 months after which they become the owners of the vehicle.Besides every driver has to pay Rs350 daily to Meru for giving them customers. Next time you get a rickety green cab you can be very well in an accident damaged car.These cars are mainly used for in city hires. The car i was travelling on was rear ended by truck and crushed completely.It was repaired at a local garage. Was a hell lot of bumpy ride with rickety suspension. Besides seat belt was not retracting.

Every cab driver has an average earning of 40K per month after diesel , maintenance and fees to Meru. Next time you hear people telling S/W engineers earn a lot, kick them
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Old 26th November 2014, 09:59   #37
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Another thing that is working in favor of these cabs is the ease with which you can book the cabs- using your smartphone.
I had installed the TaxiForSure app and all you need to do is just tap your finger on the map and the cab is booked using your current location. No need to wait on the road, no need to listen to automated IVR asking you to "Press 1, Press 2 etc.".
This ease alone tempts many to go for these cabs instead of the autos.

Even if you own a car, it makes more sense using these cabs for such places within the city where you need to pay twice the money for paid parking and places where finding a parking slot is itself an adventure.

Last edited by Car-go-man : 26th November 2014 at 10:00.
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Old 26th November 2014, 10:14   #38
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by ashwin49 View Post
Best thing to come out of this is death of the auto rickshaw is near . Taxi For Sure is about to launch Nano based cabs which should help bring down the costs to the level of a typical autorickshaw. Others cab operators should follow suite.

I do hope the demise of the Auto is hastened by the govt increasing the fares of the rickshaw by about 20-25%. Thats one price rise I would gladly welcome !
Ola also has incorporated Autos into their network. The ola app now has the option to choose near by Autos under "Ride Now" category. Not aware of the fares though.
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Old 26th November 2014, 11:22   #39
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

I personally like OLA. They have a great offer if you require a pick up from Bengaluru Airport. In just 399 you get 35 km that too in AC cab. After that they charge Rs. 12 per km.
I reach my home which is in Whitefiled in about Rs. 550. Which is amazing ! Meru would cost around 1200 buck for same trip.
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Old 26th November 2014, 11:43   #40
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by drmohitg View Post
On the contrary, I read an article recently that Uber is contemplating bringing in auto rickshaws under there wing too. To be Frank if these chaps can be controlled and monitored with no hassle with fares or the usual excuse of not going to your destination etc then I don't mind them doing this.
I said this on another thread. Auto-rickshaws, with proper governance structure like Uber's, would be the best bet for budget travel within the city.

They can squeeze in the most narrow of lanes and ply on the widest of Delhi roads with ease. If Uber can get auto-ricks to work with them then short trips within the city would become breeze while being easy on the pocket.
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Old 26th November 2014, 12:53   #41
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

I left my car at my parent's place a month ago for some temporary use there. I was worried about my daily travel to office in hot and crowded chennai city buses. I usually don't take autos as most of them are rude and i lose my cool arguing with them. What a time to try out these latest taxi offers. I installed ola, meru, uber and TFS in my phone. I must say i am very impressed to an extent that i don't miss my car these days.

OLA - Good till now. I have had almost 15 rides times with them, not once i had to wait for more than 10 mins. With the 50% offer, my one way cost to office which is 11.5 kms is just 90Rs in the mini. In chennai, the mini cars are mostly indicas and are not so good. But i am not complaining for what i am getting for 90Rs. I know this is not a sustainable offer, but still 180Rs without the offer is worth the comfort of travel, ease of booking, car tracking and peace of mind.

MERU - Unlike in the north, meru is a new player in chennai and most of the cars i got till now are new etios sedans and some decently maintained indigos. Its tough to find a genie so i mostly end up taking the meru sedans. They have a 30% cash back offer running now. For the same 11.5 km ride i get charged 220 bucks and some 60 bucks cash back. Sweet! Good punctuality and availability is also decent.

When one of them report no car is available i switch to the other one and i usually get one between ola and meru. So i haven't tried uber or TFS. But i usually see some cars around for them too and i hear uber is good.

I am really excited about the taxi revolution. It is going to get better in future and urban mobility is going to be a breeze. It is still on the dearer side, i can't spend 400-500 per day (without the offers) just for the taxis. Eagerly waiting for Nanos to be added to the fleet and thereby making it economical too. Organized autos would make it even cheaper, but i somehow hate the 3 wheeled yellow ugly things. What an impact these men behind the 3 wheels have left on me

Last edited by pedalpoint : 26th November 2014 at 12:55. Reason: Edited for clarity
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Old 26th November 2014, 13:19   #42
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

What we see as a revolution today might not look so rosy tomorrow. Currently all these companies are working with investor money and are paying out of their own pockets to grab customers. No doubt this is great for the customers who are getting a lot of options, cheap fares, convenience of booking etc. Who will not opt for such services to get rid of the hassles of taking an auto rickshaw. Think of the future when these companies would have wiped off all competition from smaller players, consolidations and mergers/takeovers would have happened and only a few large operators remain. They might also succeed in closing the auto business or maybe reduced them to nothing. At that point, we will be so dependent on these services that we will use them at more expensive rates as there will not be any choice. Companies will increase prices as per their whims as there wont be any regulations. At that time we may even miss the autos and hope for their revival Till that time, enjoy the rides.
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Old 26th November 2014, 13:34   #43
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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At that point, we will be so dependent on these services that we will use them at more expensive rates as there will not be any choice. Companies will increase prices as per their whims as there wont be any regulations. At that time we may even miss the autos and hope for their revival Till that time, enjoy the rides.
I find your views amusing. It is too far fetched and to be honest this thing is said each time there is something new happening in any sector. Be it the introduction of Big Bazaar and the likes, FDI in retail, online retailing and what not. I can say just one thing: Our country's population growth is phenomenal and is distributed across a wide income zone. So every service out there will always find a customer base.

I would really like to see them bring on Nano in the Taxi market. The only thing holding them back might be the lack of boot space and hence these cars might not be able to cater to any customer looking to travel with luggage. And those railway station and airport trips make a huge chunk of the Taxi business specially in cities where the IT traffic is not dominant.
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Old 26th November 2014, 14:07   #44
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Change? Yes! Hopefully, for better!

In the short run, we'll see service levels spike, across brands - I guess we're already there! Quick, efficient reservations, Helpdesks that actually 'Help', well-mannered (on the road, and off it!) staff, reduced fares, promo discounts, what not!

Most likely, other forms of in-city commute will get integrated (via aggregator services) - which could be as simple as a smartphone app getting rolled out to enrolled autorickshaws, etc. It follows that, as customers realize that taking a taxi-car makes the same (or more) sense, in terms of time, money, comfort & convenience, as say, taking a rick, it's likely that ricks will be phased out.

In the longer term, I think each brand/sub-brand would specialize on the basis of service and/or geography - kind of a vicious cycle, as I think we did see this kind of specialization in the near-past, albeit basis price! UberBlack might decide to cater mostly to all-day hires, UberX to airport drops & longer commutes, and UberGo to short in-city hops (disclaimer : random association) Currently, I think Uber differentiates mostly on price/type of car.

It's also likely that brands will start looking at smaller towns, with their UberGo or TaxiforSure Nano -kind of services.
There is also the possibility of local-aggregator services and/or employees-union owned in-city taxi-services or franchisee models, coming up in specific regions across India. In other words, there could be a model where a Uber does not see a potential market in a city, but might enter into a fee-based or pay-per-use deal with a local aggregator, who'd be allowed to work with a version of the Uber app (white-label product, maybe).

My thoughts would (obviously) be skewed/limited by my use of taxi-services for in-city commute. My work requires that on weekdays I travel to Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai or Hyderabad, being based out of Bangalore and Trivandrum.

If I'm in-town only for a day, I prefer to keep a car right from airport pickup, through all my frantic running around in-city, to airport drop, end of day. Car Club's our preferred corporate vendor, and to my mind, very economical for an all-day hire. However, you could as well ask the hotel car to drop you, as getting a Car Club car for an airport drop - & the hotel car would be a swankier one, for the price!

If I need a car only for airport/office pick-ups and drops, I have been a long-time Meru loyalist - though recently, I opt for Uber in Bangalore (when I'm not driving myself, that is), where Meru service is the best, IMO. Meru Helpdesk (@080-44224422) service has improved no end lately, by the way - no thanks to Uber, I guess!

Looking forward to the day when I can get an UberGo-like airport drop at 4:00AM, in Trivandrum - as against my driver having to wake up at 3:00AM.
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Old 26th November 2014, 16:03   #45
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

My 2 cents on this

This is part of the evolution as drmohitg stated our country will make space for these services as well and there will be a set of consumers that will appreciate the ease of accessing the service,usage etc.However the bigger issue to be addressed is the supply for these providers Taxi for sure and Ola have the same base of cars and drivers that keep changing the stickers as per the better offers and drive for the companies,lately you would have seen OLA inventory having gone up due to very attractive offers being doled out to drivers wherein not only are they not charging any commissions from the driver but are reimbursing them for short trips.Or these are drivers moonlighting with these companies due to the great opportunity to make money for ex Ola has reimbursements for each short trip,incentives for number of short rides done etc.This has led to lot of folks after a days work in their normal duties in offices switching on the mobile apps and driving around for some time to make the quick buck.

Secondly any driver you speak to will not want his children becoming drivers these are the same drivers who graduated from driving cabs during the call centre boom and are now driving these cabs.They also face the same stress,fatigue issues that we as users face on Bangalore roads,they want better life for their children and do not see driving as a profession that has value since if the vehicle does not run for some days they do not make money and brings stress of EMI payments, there is no leave concept with cabs hence there is a lot of risk in the owner cum driver model.Where will all the drivers that are needed to drive these cars come from.In these circumstances there is still need of a contractor who will operate the ecosystem , they buy cars and get drivers.Where do they source the drivers from .These will be either from rural areas giving rise to the same issues that we see nowadays on the infamous "company cab" ,wich is overlooked considering we do not pay from our pockets.Will we be willing to accept the same behavior when we are paying money from out pockets?

In short as consumers we should keep tracking all the companies for great offers enjoy services till the VC driven fund rush exists,once all this hoopla is over go back to driving our cars and calling the local cabwalla round the corner each time we need to hail a taxi to go somewhere important comes up.Since a glance at each of these companies FB/Twitter page will show they are far away from being reliable alternatives for transportation that they claim to be.
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