GrabTaxi, Hailo compliant with app regulatory framework; Pair Taxi's application rejected

Cab booking apps GrabTaxi and Hailo have complied and successfully registered under a new regulatory framework.
Cab booking apps GrabTaxi and Hailo have complied and successfully registered under a new regulatory framework.PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE - Cab booking apps GrabTaxi and Hailo have complied and successfully registered under a new regulatory framework designed to safeguard commuters using such third-party services.

Another app, Pair Taxi, however, has had its application rejected, because "its fare model did not meet the fare charging conditions stipulated in the regulatory framework", the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said in a press release on Tuesday (Dec 1).

GrabTaxi and Hailo have been issued a certificate that allows them to operate here for a period of three years, starting from Dec 1.

Applications from four other apps - UberTaxi, MoobiTaxi, Karhoo and ConnexTaxi - are still being evaluated by the LTA.

The Third-Party Taxi Booking Service Providers Act, which was passed in May, requires apps with more than 20 participating taxis to register with the LTA.

New service providers must obtain a certificate of registration before they can operate in Singapore. These new players are Karhoo and ConnexTaxi.

However, as a transitionary measure, existing service providers such as UberTaxi and MoobiTaxi which were already operating before Sept 1, are allowed to continue without a certificate. This is provided they made an application before December.

The Third-Party Taxi Booking Service Providers Act is aimed at protecting the safety and safeguarding the interests of commuters, with the growing prevalence of such apps.

Among the regulations, apps are only allowed to despatch licensed taxis and information on fare rates must be specified upfront. Also, apps should not require commuters to state their destinations when making a booking.