Careem and Uber are well-established and well-known ride hailing amenities in Pakistan at the moment with thousands of customers enjoying their reliable and cheaper services daily in major cities.
Only years back there was monopoly of traditional taxi service and customers were not satisfied with them both in terms of charges and facilities. Many people believe that the entry of Careem and Uber have not only made their commute easier and affordable but new condition of the cars do fascinate them a lot.
We have seen a big protest of traditional taxi drivers in Islamabad last week asking government to ban online ride hailing services. It seems that government is serious to do something about it.
The Islamabad Transport Authority (ITA) has suggested that cars working for Careem and Uber should display a sticker on their windshield to identify them. Not only that, but a government-regulated tariff may also be imposed on them. Moreover, each vehicle will also be required to have a valid fitness certificate issued by the Motor Vehicle Examiner (MVE). The ITA reiterates to issue a route permit to these services to be followed strictly.
The Authority argues that the regulated taxes would help bring an end to continuous troublesome between both riding-hailing services and the local taxi drivers. However, there’s still no word on how the tariff is going to be adjusted or what the rates are going to be.
Keeping in view a strict standard and fitness imposed by ride-hailing services at their own it seems of no importance to carry fitness certificates issued by government. Is it a way to generate revenue? On the contrary, the condition of local taxis is miserable in general. Who will cater for this?
As far as rates are concerned, we have seen rates from ride-hailing services to be lower than those offered by local taxis. Even there is no general criteria to know fares from point A to B; you often have to argue with drivers.
Let us see what comes next?