Auto, taxi fares may rise; curb likely on Ola, Uber surge pricing
The report recommends a 2x surge in fares as opposed to the 4x to 5x surge during peak hours currentlymumbai Updated: Oct 24, 2017 12:30 IST
The minimum fare of conventional black and yellow cabs and autorickshaws might rise — to Rs23 and Rs19 instead of Rs22 and Rs18 — if the state government accepts the report of a panel appointed by it to fix the fares for autos and taxis. But it is not all bad news. There will also be a restriction on surge pricing by app-based taxi aggregators like Ola and Uber. The report recommends a 2x surge in fares as opposed to the 4x to 5x surge during peak hours currently.
In the 212-page report that the government made public on Monday night, the panel recommended allowing just 1.75 times or 0.75 % additional surge for app-based taxis, fixing their base fare between Rs14 and Rs16 for three categories of cabs — regular, mid-sized and premium. The upper cap for surge pricing recommended for them is Rs26, Rs32 and Rs38 a km respectively.
Earlier this month, the four-member panel chaired by retired IAS officer BC Khatua had submitted its report to the state government, almost after a year it was appointed in October 2016. Besides deciding the formula for black and yellow taxis and autorickshaws, the government had asked it to fix a fare for app-based taxis and electric taxis.
The panel recommended telescopic pricing (that will reduce for each km with the increase in distance) beyond 8km of distance for black and yellow cab and cool cabs, besides happy-hour schemes allowing to give up to 15% discounts during lean period between 12-4pm. A happy-hour discount was also recommended for app-based taxis.
A transport department official said the panel wants to keep the base fare of app-based taxis a little less than conventional taxis to bring a level playing field among all stakeholders, besides ensuring passengers get competitive fares. The government is yet to accept the recommendations so it is not clear when the new fare structure come into effect.