Surge pricing? Cab firms should be simplifying fare system

I read with dismay about taxi companies' plans to introduce surge pricing (Metered fares likely even as cab firms plan for surge pricing; March 9).

The end result is a price increase and more confusing fares.

Currently, the complex fare system is a millstone around commuters' necks, being both difficult to understand and representative of pricier rides.

This adds to the dissatisfaction because customers are unable to get cabs when they need them.

The taxi operators seem to be trying to charge more for an unreliable service.

It would not be surprising if more customers leave in droves and flock to the private-hire car services.

For taxi operators, the right thing to do is to simplify fares and have one fare throughout the day, like in many other countries.

Then, they should be monitoring the operations to ensure that there are cabs available.

Exhortations by the people for operators to do better seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

If taxi companies do not understand commuters' needs, they must be prepared to see a rise in the number of unhired cabs idling in carparks.

Peter Loon Seng Chee

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 13, 2017, with the headline 'Surge pricing? Cab firms should be simplifying fare system'. Print Edition | Subscribe