New Delhi: Drivers canceling rides are the number one complaint from users of app-based taxi services, according to a year-long nationwide survey by community platform LocalCircles.
A whopping 79% of survey participants who answered a question about trip cancellations said drivers canceling trips due to an unfavorable destination or cashless payment method were their biggest problem.
LocalCircles released the results of its investigation on Wednesday. In a statement, the platform said it received 65,000 responses from app taxi users residing in 324 districts across India. Sixty-six percent of respondents were male and 34% were female. While 48% of respondents were from Tier 1 districts, 31% from Tier 2 districts, and 21% from Tier 3, 4 and rural districts.
Fifty-eight percent of users said they had traveled in an app taxi in the past 12 months. Forty-seven percent of these users said the top issue they faced was driver cancellations, followed by price hikes (32%), long wait times (9%), security issues (5%) and non-compliance with Covid protocol (3%).
The survey was conducted to understand current issues with services provided by companies like Ola, Uber, and Rapido, among others. It also sought to understand whether the motor vehicle aggregator guidelines introduced by the government in 2020 have been effective in addressing the trip cancellation and price hike issues faced by app taxi users. .
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71% say there is no improvement despite government guidelines
According to the survey results, 71% of respondents said there seemed to be no improvement, when it came to trip cancellations, even after the government released the motor vehicle aggregator guidelines in November 2020.
The guidelines, which were put in place by The union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, mandate that aggregators will be permitted to charge a maximum surge fare of 1.5 times the base city taxi fare set by the respective state governments. In addition, if a driver cancels a reservation without valid reason, a penalty of 10% of the total fare not exceeding Rs 100 will be imposed.
However, 45% said that even after the guidelines were published, they were charged more than 1.5 times in excess.
On Tuesday, the Bombay High Court had directed App-based taxi aggregators in Maharashtra must strictly follow the guidelines and apply for valid licenses to continue their operations.
(Edited by Gitanjali Das)
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