Since launching in 2009, Uber has continued to revolutionize the way we get from point A to point B. The sharing economy is not going away anytime soon, and if Uber continues to grow at its current pace, you may never take another taxi again. Here are 3 reasons that Uber continues to win the Taxi Wars.
While a normal UberBlack may cost the same or even more than a standard taxi, UberX is the service that is really scaring the taxi establishment. While pricing varies by country and even by city, it has been demonstrated that a typical UberX will cost you as little as half the price of a normal taxi. In my experience using UberX primarily in Bogota, Colombia, I routinely save 30% compared to the standard yellow taxis that are ubiquotous in the city.
For decades customers have been frustrated by high or predatory taxi fares and Uber is continuing to make inroads with these customers. Add in the fact that tipping is not required or expected when using Uber and this benefit becomes a no-brainer.
2. Service and Safety
How many times have you jumped into a taxi only to be greated by a dirty car, an unpleasant smell, or an unfriendly driver?
In my experience, the overall service offered by Uber is easily 100% better than what the taxi industry has to offer, no matter the city. In Bogota, a city notorious for its poor taxi service, I have been scammed, given fake bills, insulted, and forced to endure dangerous rides that would shake any suburban mom to her core. The city can be especially dangerous for foreigners like myself and I feel like everytime I take a taxi I am playing Russian Roulette with my life.
In comparison, the average experience of a Bogota Uber is incredibly pleasant. I am usually welcomed by a friendly driver who lets me choose the radio station, has water or candy to offer, and generally respects the rules of the road like any sane driver would. A typical UberX car is new and spacious, and its suspension does not consist of tissue paper which seems to be the norm with the standard taxis. If this isn’t enough, I have never been ripped off by an Uber since payments are processed automatically through a credit card.
This service difference is night and day, and all of these factors apply, although to a lesser extent, when talking about the USA and Canada.
3. Reducing Traffic and Pollution
It’s become clear that we currently have far too many cars on the road, with far too few passengers inside each car. What if we could make our streets more efficient, with less congestion and at a lower cost per rider? Uber is attempting to achieve this goal through UberPOOL. UberPOOL is a relatively new service available in major city centers worldwide that allows you to share your standard UberX with 1 or 2 other riders going in the same direction.
Not only does this save riders money, but it should help to reduce the number of cars on the road, thereby reducing overall carbon dioxide emmissions. This service appears to be a win-win-win for drivers, riders, and the environment as it attempts to make rider transportion much more efficient. UberPOOL just launched today in Bogota, and I am anxious to see what effects it will have on traffic in the city. Previous trials in other cities are beginning to show the huge advantages it can offer. It’s a shame that carpooling or similiar services are simply not available via standard taxis.
There are several additional advantages of Uber that I have not gotten into, but it has become increasingly clear to me that Uber is the future of the taxi industry. No matter how hard the taxis fight back, I believe their days of market dominance have come to an end.
Written by Peter Wywrot
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