TAXI app Uber has caused anger amongst London’s famous black taxi drivers who feel the radical mini-cab service should be banned By: Dave Snelling Published: Wed, June 11, 2014 The capital ground to halt today as London’s black taxi drivers took to the streets in protest over Uber.
This smartphone app is changing the way people travel across the city and London cabbies are angry about the impact on their business.
But you might be wondering what Uber is - and why it’s causing so much fuss.
Here’s everything you need to know. • Uber is an online mini-cab service that connects passengers with drivers via an app.
• Using the app, passengers can check the estimated price of the trip on their smartphones. Then, with a simple tap, the taxi is booked. Users instantly receive an estimated time of arrival and position of the cab on an interactive map.
• Once booked, a picture and name of the driver appears on your phone along with a contact telephone number.
• Because Uber holds users credit card details no cash ever exchanges hands. At the end of a journey passengers instantly get sent a receipt to their phone and payment is debited directly from their bank account.
• With Uber’s cashless system, passengers are never expected to tip the driver. • The Express.co.uk put Uber to test last week on a journey across the capital. The price for the 10-mile trip was £20 - around half the price of a black cab.
• But it’s not always this cheap. At busy times Uber can double the price of the fares, although users are always alerted to this before booking.
• The company was founded in March 2009 by US entrepreneurs Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp.
• The company is now operating in 37 countries and is worth an estimated $18.2billion (£11billion). So why are London’s black cabs up in arms?
Most mini-cab companies tell you the exact fare before you travel, whereas Uber only gives you an estimate.
The final cost is then determined on the time taken and distance travelled.
London’s cab drivers argue that this way of working constitutes a taxi meter, which is the device that sits in licensed black cabs and works out your fare.
The law states that only black cabs are allowed to use this type of meter in London.
Transport for London is expected to enforce this law but says that Uber is doing nothing illegal.
London’s army of black taxi drivers don’t agree with TFL’s decision - and cabbies have taken to the streets to show their anger at the decision. ---TAXI app Uber has caused anger amongst London’s famous black taxi drivers who feel the radical mini-cab service should be banned--- ...