PETALING JAYA: Dozens of taxi drivers held a gathering outside MyTeksi office here to show their dissatisfaction over the company’s GrabCar chauffeured service.
They claimed that these private cars, which offer cheaper fare, had taken away most of their business.
“Our business has dropped about 60% since the service started last year,” said cabbie Ricky Subramaniam, who is currently using MyTeksi service to get customers.
According to GrabCar website, an economy-type vehicle charges a base rate of RM2.30 and RM0.97 per kilometre of ride while a street taxi has a flag-down rate of RM3 and RM1.25 per kilometre.
Ricky said a person had to undergo the vocational license tests in order to become a licensed taxi driver, undergo yearly medical checks and send the vehicle for inspection every six months.
“But a GrabCar driver does not have to go through all this and this is not fair to us,” he said.
Federal Territories and Selangor Taxi Association president Datuk Aslah Abdullah hoped the government would take action against these illegal taxi cabs.
“They are illegal and we are very clear about that,” he added.
In May, the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) announced that they had picked up 223 unlicensed hired car drivers and seized nearly 80 vehicles in a series of crackdowns against illegal taxis.
Most of these drivers were using mobile apps such as GrabCar and Uber to get customers.
Drivers guilty of unlicensed ferrying face fines of up to RM10,000 or a maximum of one year’s jail, or both.
In response, MyTeksi said GrabCar – which shares the same platform as the MyTeksi app – was a complement to its current service.
“Feedback from the drivers has been positive with many agreeing that their income has increased up to 300% since joining our service,” it said in a statement.
The company also pointed out that a majority of the 619 drivers, who took part in an in-house study, said there was an increase of bookings (78%), safety (68%) and job security (64%).
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