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Harlow taxi drivers meet over growing concerns over Uber

General / Fri 25th Jun 2021 at 09:06am

A LARGE number of local taxi drivers have met to express their concerns over the increasing presence of Uber drivers in Harlow.

The meeting of the Harlow Licensed Drivers Welfare Association (HLDWA) took place at the GPCA.

A spokesperson said: ” Almost 28 to 30 drivers attended the meeting. All drivers have raised their concerns about increasing numbers of Uber drivers in Harlow which has massively affected private hire and taxi drivers work.

“We have to attend many training meetings, we are taught to look after children, disabled and elderly people.

The Uber is working without all that plus there is no check and balance on them in Harlow.

“We have raised this issue with council and are planning to make public aware of the impact on local drivers it has created and we still are going through.

“During that meeting drivers have mentioned how unfairly they have been treated by the operators as their rent has been increased so many times without any consultation with drivers which is completely unfair.

“The drivers mentioned that they have to face the increase of rent every year or so regardless of work which is not much because of other competitors in town.

“It has been discussed that council is not playing its part as well towards the drivers license fees which is highest in Essex and other counties.

The management was informed that private hire drivers have been facing so many running costs which cost them fuel and time and the operators are still taking those runners jobs over and over again regardless of the reports the drivers have been reporting on their run.

“In other hand Uber drivers are taking all the jobs and they don’t have to worry about the runner because the company pay them regardless if the ride cancels.

“The association has decided to bring this issue into the notice of council as well so that it can be enforced to operators.

Drivers have mentioned many times they have been booked from a customer and at the same time customer book Uber as well when they notice any promotion going on and then customer choose to not drop the Uber as customer have to pay charges if they cancel the ride, on other hand if they cancel a job from the taxi drivers they don’t lose anything but private hire/taxi driver loses it’s time and fuel.

“Association has decided to bring all these issues into the notice of licensing authorities to take any action towards this as it has been affecting hundreds of local families.

“The meeting was held for an hour and half and decided to bring these issues into council notice and bring public awareness to support their local businesses.”

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12 Comments for Harlow taxi drivers meet over growing concerns over Uber:

some guy
2021-06-25 13:19:00

uber cost half that of a cab if money is tight its a no brainer ill go with uber

Nick
2021-06-25 14:59:56

Obviously using Uber to do same trip for half price, in my experience they have all been professional and not paying more than I need to! Leave Uber alone, it’s just competition like any other business like supermarkets, don’t have private meets against them, maybe you should be more competitive if you want to keep going! I have no link to Uber or any drivers, just like efficiency and price

Syed
2021-06-25 15:38:19

I have been using uber for long, they are professional some are bad as we can expect from any person, their cars are in good condition and cost less. Local taxi should raise their level of service to compete uber rather than crying over it.

H
2021-06-25 20:35:19

Not being funny, but, Uber are a hell of a lot cheaper and you’re notified of who the driver is and car they drive. If there was to be any issues, such as safety, it can be easily reported to the necessary authority. Private mini cabs and taxi drivers have also been responsible for wrong doings , no matter how much they’re trained. It’s not likely you’re going to remember a a cab and license number when you’re totally sloshed is it? I’m female and I feel just as safe with Uber as I do other local taxi and mini cab firms.

Andy incoming
2021-06-25 21:53:52

Black cabs with their dirty diesel engines and very very slow driving speeds. Long delays pulling away from lights, extends waits on roundabouts and junctions when plenty of safe opportunities to go, then extended routes. All these factors to drive up fees. If they were honest and efficient rather than expensive and slow, they would not be in this situation. Uber was created as a fair taxi company.

Hayley
2021-06-25 23:16:37

I use uber all the time after a local firm took my booking and then was over half an hour late! They just aren't as reliable and Uber are quick and efficient and they won't take your booking if they can't get to you!

Kayas Hussain
2021-06-26 17:57:47

Harlow licensed drivers do not have any problem with Uber operating in the town and we welcome the competition. Our concern is the competition must be fair and not distorted in favour of a multinational company with deep pockets who seem to think the rules don't apply to them. We would like Uber to register with Harlow Council and abide by the same rules and safety policies the council have put in place for the protection of the travelling public just like we have to. One of our members recently picked up a customer from Bishop's Stortford who took an uber earlier in the evening and paid £12, when the customer tried to get a return a few hours later Uber quoted £60 for the same journey due to surge pricing!! If we are driven out of business than this sort of pricing will become the norm. Uber's business model is to subsidize artificially low fares with the sole intention of driving out competition and then to raise the fares. We are not being alarmist as you only need to see what's happening in New York City at the moment where uber fares have gone through the roof due to a lack of local cabbies caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Bhuian
2021-06-26 18:30:25

Yes I agree with you kayas. Uber is slightly cheaper when there is no job. If town is busy they charge 3 to 5 times more!!!!!! I think this not fair for customer.

Ollie
2021-06-26 19:14:58

I use local cabs and have been for a long long time I have any complaints to give. People are in favour of Uber as the fare are “cheaper” but little do these people know they charge you do how busy it is whereas locals have a set price so you could pay either loads or less for Uber depending on traffic whereas local cabs have a set price. We also have to look at the elderly community who aren’t as tec savvy and may not be able to use a smart phone so there only option is the local cabs which I don’t see a problem with-ollie

Peter Wheatland
2021-06-30 14:47:11

Not licensed by Harlow shouldn't be allowed to work in Harlow. That means Epping plated vehicles too.But operators are very greedy.Why dont you all have a week off at the same time,and give the operators what you think is a fair rent.I think £60 is fair.

Mohammad
2021-07-06 20:05:46

I work for Uber and paying £250 rent I’m thinking to leave and support the local operators as there rent is very reasonable even if I pay them £150 I’m saving £100 myself

Dan
2021-07-09 21:46:27

🟢 NO SURPRISE THERE!! SHORTAGE OF UBER DRIVERS SEES PRICES DOUBLE TO £46 FOR A FOUR-MILE JOURNEY Uber users say they have been hit with surging prices for their usual rides, after the number of private hire drivers was decimated during the peak of the pandemic. Some riders have complained of fare prices more than doubling in some cases and a lack of available drivers in the area since the lockdown. According to the Daily Mail, industry experts have warned that this may be the tip of the iceberg, and that there has 'never been a worse time' to be an Uber driver after price model changes. Denise Beighton took to Twitter saying how a £10-15 four-mile trip unexpectedly ended up costing her £47. She wrote: "I complained to customer services and they've offered me a £10 credit note." For another regular customer, her daily trip from Marylebone to Kensington High Street has more than doubled in price, from £7 to over £18 in recent weeks. On the Uber app, it informs her that prices have risen because of 'increased demand'. She said: "I tried to book three times, saw how much it was going to cost me, and then gave up and hailed a black cab. It was six quid cheaper and I didn't have to wait eight minutes for it." Last month, Londoners hit out at Uber for 'costing more than a black cab' - but the company insists it has not raised prices in two years. The national shortage in PHV and taxi drivers could have lasting implications. Although taxi and private hire firms are seeing increased levels of demand, there has been a widely reported 40 per cent drop in the number of drivers across the UK. Many gave up on the industry when lockdown restrictions cut all journeys that were 'non-essential' and instead turned to delivery driving. While the pandemic crippled the financial returns of hundreds of thousands of businesses, Uber was no different. Its revenue from its taxi business almost halved, reports the Telegraph, from approximately $10.7billion (£7.7bn) to $6.1bn (£4.4bn). With draconian restrictions easing, passengers have been returning to big cities and looking for familiarly cheap fares from Uber. James Farrar, a representative at App Drivers and Couriers Union, says there are multiple reasons why drivers left the industry and won't be returning any time soon. He said: "The pandemic had a crippling psychological effect on drivers, meaning many turned away from the profession and simply haven't returned. "Look at private hire and taxi drivers' death rates, they were among the highest. The 80 per cent pay they received when they had no work didn't help with the fixed costs of paying for their vehicles, meaning many had to sell up or face huge debts." He also criticised Uber for changing its pricing model last October from a time and distance-based fare, to a fixed price.

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