Cabbies should take advantage of flag-down system

It is evident that there has been an increase in the appearance and use of private-hire car services such as Uber and Grab in Singapore.

Taxi ridership has fallen from an average daily ridership of 967,000 in 2013 to 954,000 last year.

It is also obvious that many taxi companies and taxi drivers are not too happy with the present situation. ComfortDelGro has urged its employees to take pictures of private-hire cars illegally using taxi stands.

There has also been a push for Uber and Grab drivers to apply for a Private Hire Car Driver's Vocational Licence.

So many rules are being implemented to curb Uber and Grab drivers, but there is still much animosity between them and cabbies. Perhaps it is because the measures merely slow the growth of private-hire car services, rather than stop it completely.

To stay relevant and compete, taxi drivers should take advantage of what they have: the flag-down system.

Passengers can flag down taxis at any place and at any time.

How about creating an app that includes a GPS map so taxi drivers can see where their fellow drivers are? This map can broadcast areas where there is an excessive number of taxis, and send messages to inform drivers of where taxis are scarce.

This will allow taxi drivers to reach out to potential customers, aid them in their work and help them gain more revenue.

Cheryl Mah Yiwen (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 25, 2017, with the headline 'Cabbies should take advantage of flag-down system'. Print Edition | Subscribe