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Old 26th November 2014, 16:25   #46
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by m8002? View Post
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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Originally Posted by fine69 View Post
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.
Ola's incorporation of autos into their network seems to be successful. We have used the auto option via the Ola App 2-3 times now and no cause to complain. The fare is as per meter + Rs 10 convenience charge. One auto guy we had a chat with during the journey indicated he is happy with it as of now.
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Old 26th November 2014, 16:39   #47
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

All the investment and hype has hit the great Indian wall. I do not know about other cities but can share my two paise worth about Bangalore. I have been using Meru since their launch. and have also tried Ola, Taxiforsure, Easycabs and KSTDC in Bangalore.
The biggest disappointment has been the attitude to in-city runs that do not end at major spots like the airport or railway stations across all brands.
Residential area to residential area hires get to the bottom of the heap for bookings. I have witnessed scores of cabs parked in my locality from many brands idling and waiting for an airport run. When you call the companies, they say "Sorry all our cabs are booked", even when I have evidence to the contrary .
I did contact Meru about this through their feedback system, got a boiler plate reply along with a discount coupon, upon pressing further was met with thundering silence.
The next time I used a major corporate id and got a booking for a run less than 4 kms long, thought the driver was grumbling all the way. C'est la Vie and Welcome to India!
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Old 26th November 2014, 17:55   #48
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Here in Chandigarh, OLA Mini is available for 49 bucks for the first 3 K.M. Thereafter 10 bucks per K.M. It is REALLY cheap. If one sees the cost of buying a car, insurance, service, repairs and the fuel, OLA Mini surely would be cheaper!
I for sure have become a cab fan!
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Old 26th November 2014, 18:05   #49
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by Rajeevraj View Post
Ola's incorporation of autos into their network seems to be successful. We have used the auto option via the Ola App 2-3 times now and no cause to complain. The fare is as per meter + Rs 10 convenience charge. One auto guy we had a chat with during the journey indicated he is happy with it as of now.
Exactly everybody seems to be in the make merry till the offer lasts.I believe there are very few organisations that are really trying to get to the crux of the issue and resolve them, like the peace auto initiative or autoraja of Chennai.I believe these are the type of solutions that are required to have sustainable change in the urban transport sector else these gimmicks will exist till VC money flows and once the tap is shut it is back to status quo.
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Old 26th November 2014, 18:35   #50
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Nano taxis are already running in Guwahati. Their website is innovatively named as 7151515.com which is also their call center number.

I took one, last month for a ride to the railway station located at the other corner of the city. It was saturday evening and the main thoroughfares were chock-a-block with traffic. The driver suggested that we take the bylanes, but it might cost me more.

In the end he took to all possible shortcuts shoving the Nano into smallest of lanes and reached the destination.

Though it costed me more comparatively if taken the same ride through the main roads, I am optimistic that their business will only improve considering the ever long traffic jams in our roads.

Last edited by fordday : 26th November 2014 at 18:36.
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Old 26th November 2014, 20:37   #51
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

I think the Taxi revolution is here to stay. Its a win win for all (Drivers, passengers, the environment)

In the past 3 weeks, when my car was not available, I got to have a first hand experience of the convenience of booking a cab through the app. Nothing beats it. Ola, especially must be mentioned as a very efficient and prompt taxi service, followed by Meru. Not yet got to experience Uber.

What worries me is the amount of discounts they are offering. I hope they have good sense and are not squandering away the VC money with a cut throat business model. It will not be good for the business.
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Old 26th November 2014, 23:40   #52
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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
In Bangalore, it's Uber's cars that are of top quality.

I have booked more than 10 rides on both Uber and Ola.
Have bitter experiences with Ola. Their drivers and cars are not so great the quality in comparison to Uber.

I heard from one of the driver who drives Etios (UberX) that he is making close to 70-80K after all his expenses. He said he is praying that the companies continue to dole out offers/incentives for few more months and he would easily repay his entire car loan!! Whoa!
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Old 27th November 2014, 10:15   #53
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Some more news on the taxi war in India http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/26/ube...ntent=FaceBook
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Old 27th November 2014, 10:36   #54
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Everything said, I have noticed a rather predictable behaviour in almost all the cab service providers here in NCR. There is no instant confirmation: it is not due to any system checks or availability IMHO. They gauge the distance you need to travel, and if it is a few kilometers with billing in the tune of 200-300 rupees they revert to you saying cabs not available. Very convenient! I have noticed this on far too many instances to be passed off as a coincidence. On the other hand, on the busiest of time slots, if I need to travel, say, 50-60kms (yes NCR is thaaaat big ) I got a confirmed cab each time. The cab company might not be owning all the cabs, and it is sub contracted probably, with the "real" owner checking if the "case" makes a high margin or not! Each time, after settling the bill, I have this cabbie grinning and offering me his direct number to hail him and he will go at a flat xx/km with all inclusive etc etc. What say? Hearsay?

Last edited by lapis_lazuli : 27th November 2014 at 10:37.
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Old 27th November 2014, 10:49   #55
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

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Originally Posted by ankur_shar View Post
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.
How Reliable are OLA for Airport drop , I have a flight early morning at 5-30am and thought of going with Meru.
Any other good taxi drops from Marathahalli to Airport apart from OLA.
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Old 27th November 2014, 11:11   #56
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Chennai auto drivers are one of the worst you will find in the country and these new cab aggregators are a blessing. I have used Ola, Taxi for sure, Fast Track, NTL & Uber.

Ola was quite good, but of late they are unreliable for trips to the airport, railway station, etc. I have had quite a few occasions where the driver says he can't come because it is too far and this at 5 am in the morning ! Stopped using Ola after this happened 2 -3 times.

Taxi for sure is good and have had good experiences, but cab availability for an immediate requirement is a bad.

Fast Track / NTL - The old timers here in Chennai. They are good, but expensive - Rs.18 - 19 /km for an Indica ! (Think they have dropped fares recently, not sure)

Uber - By far the best. Have always got a cab within 15 minutes and the cabs have been super clean with good drivers.

Last edited by fiat_tarun : 27th November 2014 at 11:13.
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Old 27th November 2014, 14:19   #57
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

Here is an update based on my recent conversation with one of the cab drivers:

1. Ola does not own any of the cabs and acts like an aggregator (everyone knows this).
2. Though Ola charges you different rates for Mini, Sedan and Prime, the drivers get paid at the same rate of 21 per km. Therefore, the difference between 15 & 21 (in case of Mini in Mumbai) is subsidized by Ola.
3. Ola billing is not linked to actual running of the car but on distance as measured by GPS. Therefore, if you are doing a very long trip, the actual distance could potentially be 1-2 km more than the bill to factor in the left-right movement, lane changing, etc. that gets captured in the vehicle.
4. Ola has by far the best option for car owners / drivers where they pay an amount upfront for the device which is nothing but a GPS enabled mobile with its software loaded on it (some Rs. 20k I think) and then have an option to 'opt-in' or 'opt-out' of the service's bookings. No need to change anything in the car.
5. Ola keeps a 10% cut on every billing and pays the rest to the driver.
6. Amount is directly credited to the driver's account on a weekly basis.
7. It incentivizes the drivers based on number of trips made per day. Therefore, over and above the amount made on the trip, it pays a fixed amount to drivers (500-600 if 6 trips that day, 800 for more than 8 trips, and so on).

My personal experince has been :
1. Easy - high on unreliability index and very low on customer service index. They will not even tell you that you booking has been cancelled and you will keep holding till eternity if you call them.
2. Meru - a little less unreliable than Easy.
3. Tabcab - very little use experience. In one of my trips the driver told me that in the first lot of the new Toyota Etios that they bought, they have had a problem with the wheel differencer (smaller size or something) which gave a lesser km reading than actuals and they earn lessNot sure if really true or was he just trying to get sympathy and tip!
4. Megacab - very little use experience. But their cars were Indigo XXL/Manza, with massive legroom at the backseat and gave a good feeling.
5. Ola - have never faced cancellation so far. Good customer service.

Meru, Easycabs, Megacabs, Tabcabs started off with vehicle ownership model where they used to buy the vehicle and give it to drivers to run and charged a daily rent from them. This turned out to be a very capex-intensive business limiting their expansion strategy. Ola was always an asset-light model and therefore had much higher 'bang for the buck' for its investments and was able to grow much faster.
Now, the former ones are also going asset light - they are selling the cars to the drivers after buying it in bulk for cheap.

The beauty of Ola is that any cab owner can be part of the group and can buy any car of his choice and there is no need to do any permanent changes to the vehicle. This suits all the existing taxi operators / owners well.
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Old 27th November 2014, 14:21   #58
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

These services are boon in cities like bangalore, where autorickshaw guys place menace, and it is the customer who was suffereing at the hands of auto and unorganized taxis.
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Old 27th November 2014, 14:37   #59
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

After having used these cabs for last 18 months on twice a day basis, what we observe is
a) They are absolutely convenient and can be booked any time on a click of an application.
b) Drivers & Cars are mostly in good shape, drivers are courteous (except few instances with Ola). Overall you are safe as its GPS tracked.
c) No worry of fleecing by cab drivers as the fares are published and mailed to you. Infact Uber saves you from any monetary exchange by registering your card so no hassles with the driver
d) Cheap alternative to drive in the city or to commute to office by not facing errant auto drivers in AC cars.

Indian Taxi Industry is in nascent stage and considering the rise in middle class due to economic development and corresponding rise in traffic, the scope for developing this Industry is exponential and hence these companies with external funding are pumping millions of dollar in terms of cheap fares, driver acquisition, driver wages & perquisites, fleet of cabs etc.

Are they making Profit ? Not at all ! For whatever they claim, they are loosing approximately 4 Rs per KM on a drive with these predatory pricing.

Why do they pursue Predatory prising ? They want people to shed their inhibitions of driving in "public taxis" and accept the new gen "Cabs" in offering aided by development in mobile technology. Their predatory pricing are motivating people to keep their cars back home and slowly bring a cultural change in the mindset of the people. Once achieved, they will slowly increase the price as habituated culturally changed people will keep using them e.g. Flipkart, People were extremely sceptical initially buying even a accessory from Flipkart and now its a revolution.
Not to forget how these eCommerce and Cabs Industry are helping drivers and courier companies earn their livelihood and giving them so many opportunities to live a dignified, economically stable life.

Bottom Line: make hay while the sun shines
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Old 27th November 2014, 17:36   #60
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Default Re: The Indian Taxi Revolution - Uber, Ola, TaxiforSure, Meru etc.

When these services first came up, it was a welcome break from arranging taxis with the local 'taxi-wallas'. But in all my experiences with local travel within Gurgaon, found them hugely reluctant. At peak hours they have even refused to make a booking - asking me to call back and check when I was prepared to leave. Came up as very unreliable for airport travels as well - almost making me miss my flight on an occasion or two.

Thankfully Gurgaon now has auto-rickshaws available for the odd days my car is in the workshop.

So, in what I have experienced, it did not work good for intra-city travel within Gurgaon. For my family needs, I have a friendly 'taxi-wallah' in my neighbourhood who provides decent service.

Therefore, at least so far in Gurgaon the services lack the reliability that could help us cut down on the cars we are needing to maintain within the family.

Looking at this thread though, it looks the services might have been revamped with new entrants. Might be worth trying these out sometime.
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