Hyderabad: Malavika Kwatra booked an 11:30 am Uber from Nallagandla to Rajiv Gandhi International Airport to board a 3pm flight. While she was waiting for the taxi, the driver called her and asked her where she wanted to go. When she answered “airport,” the taxi driver hung up and, within a minute, canceled the trip.
She booked three more taxis from Uber and all called to ask where she was going or just canceled the ride. She got lucky with the fifth driver who didn’t cancel the trip and after waiting about half an hour she left for the airport.
The same thing happened to Vamsi, a resident of Madhapur. He booked a cab, the driver called to ask where he was going and what the fare was, then quickly canceled the ride. However, a minute later, the taxi driver called him back and told him that he was ready to take Vamsi to the airport for the same price, but asked him not to book a taxi on the app. . He said he would come and get Vamsi and Vamsi agreed.
Many residents have faced similar issues when booking taxis.
In accordance with article 178 of the Motor Vehicle Law of 1988 (refusal to carry out contractual transport on hire by a driver), drivers cannot cancel the journey. In fact, it is an offense and they are liable to a fine.
But why do taxi drivers cancel trips?
Companies do not compensate drivers for the time, effort and fuel spent to reach the pick-up location or for empty journeys to town, said Shaik Salauddin, chairman of the drivers and drivers joint action. Telangana State taxis. Committee. After the aggregator commission and fuel costs, longer trips often end up being much more expensive, he added.
“Drivers have to fork out out of pocket for gas, insurance, car repairs and loan repayments. The recent rise in gasoline prices coupled with Uber and Ola’s ever-changing incentive structure means hourly rates for drivers have dropped significantly compared to pre-pandemic times. Hyderabad police penalize drivers up to Rs. 500 for each trip cancellation, ”said Shaik Salauddin.
Cancellation after knowing the drop-off / pick-up location?
According to Shaik Salauddin, drivers cancel trips once they know the drop-off or pick-up location. This happens when the drop-off / pick-up location is far from where they are now or the route is chargeable or there is a possibility that the next trip from that area is far away or the The route is congested and they will not be. made up for that. Rising fuel prices and lower fares force drivers to make certain decisions that may seem irresponsible and frivolous to the customer, but sometimes are a critical choice the driver makes to save time and money.
Cancellation after knowing the payment method
Rideshare companies like Ola and Uber typically pay drivers their share of the fare at the end of the week. “Drivers live almost hand-to-hand. This was the situation even before the pandemic. Daily EMPs for their vehicle, rising fuel prices, low kilometer rates and high cost of living in cities have now driven drivers on board, ”said Abdul Nayeem, a taxi driver.
Mohammed Fahiuddin, a taxi driver, said they needed their pay to run their household. “When drivers are strapped for cash for the day and multiple trips only pay by online payment through the company’s app, they tend to ignore those trips,” Mohiuddin said.
The drivers tell how they start the day with Rs. 500 for fuel and daily expenses and at the end of the day they don’t even have enough money to buy vegetables to take home.
Cancellation of trips to or from the airport
Most of the country’s airports charge high fees for parking commercial vehicles. Many drivers use month-long passes to operate exclusively at airports. This puts them in competition with drivers who are on the lookout to solicit passengers looking for a route while strolling through the arrival area.
“Another problem is that the airport is far from the city. The traffic congestion still present in the city is also a problem. Such circumstances also deter drivers from accepting trips to and from the airport. Sometimes, there is also the problem of excess baggage and customers refuse to understand the problem of limited luggage space in a certain type of vehicle and insist on “fitting” to accommodate all their cargo in one vehicle. Said Telangana Gig and the Platform Workers Union.
The union added, “There is also the issue of the weight of the luggage and the ability of the vehicle to make the trip with that amount of load. The cost of fuel and the possibility of fines and traffic violations for excess baggage an issue the customer refuses to consider. “
Due to the limited availability of taxis at RGIA, passengers wait for their ride.
Many drivers have stopped coming to the RGIA lately, due to the limited availability of taxis. To address the shortage problem, RGIA authorities have now partnered with three other taxi service operators, CHOIS, 4 Wheels and Quick Ride, which have been made easier to operate from the airport.
“Placing an adequate number of taxis on their platform is the primary responsibility of taxi service providers like Ola and Uber. in recent days, the number of Pushpak bus services to the airport has also increased, ”RGIA said.
Cancellation of night races
Drivers who have been driving all day click on the “Go to Home” option available on the app at the end of the day. This functionality is somewhat similar for all app-based ridesharing services. “But the app almost always doesn’t offer a route to the drivers’ homes. Most of the time, the trips are so elaborate and long that drivers keep canceling the trips to get the one to bring them home. Although drivers sometimes also cancel trips to shady places at odd hours as there have been cases where drivers have been looted during the trip or worse have been killed and their vehicles have been stolen, ”said Shaik Salauddin .
Cancellation due to animals
Drivers said customers who call for pet rides tend to leave messes. “They don’t consider the problem they create not only for the driver but also for the next person who will book a ride. Not all customers who might book trips to take their pets either. for an outing, or for a medical emergency, but most of the drivers complained about unruly pets and even rude customers, ”said K Prakash, Telangana Gig and the Union of Workers’ Union driver. platform.
Large pets such as large dogs that need air conditioning and have to move around tend to leave a foul odor in the vehicle. “The next customer who books the trip will file a complaint about the condition of the vehicle, which in turn affects our income and our likelihood of making trips. We need to invest in cleaning and disinfecting the vehicle. It is also possible that a customer could be very allergic to the animal that has already taken a ride. An adverse reaction can trigger a shock for the client. There are many scenarios where the driver would be held responsible for all the negative results of transporting animals. This prompts drivers to reject these rides, ”Prakash said.