Insurance claims and Seat Belts

About 3 years ago a friend of mine was involved in a accident whilst out working the Taxi, the circumstances were that one of TfL’s finest private hire drivers decided to turn right into a one street the wrong way and hit my friend’s Taxi head on. My friend sustain some injuries as a consequence of the accident for which a claim has been going on ever since.

The result of this is that the third parties insurance company have made him an offer which is 10% lower because he was not wearing his seat belt! Now as he was working he is not required by law to wear a seat belt but the insurance company are refusing to acknowledge this fact but instead state that he as a driver should be aware of the dangers of not wearing a seatbelt and are standing by their offer which is 10% lower than they would have offered if he had been wearing his seatbelt.

It beggars belief that even though the 3rd Party insurance companies client was directly responsible for the accident through driving without due care and his dangerous driving by turning the wrong way into a one way street they still want to shrug their responsibility of paying my friend the full amount of what he should be due for the injuries he sustained.

So please be aware of this fact when submitting claims to third party insurers and this page for more information.

Get Taxi 1 Month On

Well it’s been just over a month since my last post about Get Taxi and it appears that they still seem to be muddling along from one total cock-up to the next.

They profess to listen to what Taxi Drivers say to them but so far have failed to deliver on most of their promises to the trade.

It is beyond belief that nearly 3 years on and Get Taxi still have no credit or debit card payment gateway for drivers to use which in my opinion should have been a priority right from day one.

If i were an investor in Get Taxi I would be asking some serious questions like why is it that a Taxi Driver can get a card payment gateway up and running on a shoestring and yet even with the quoted £17 million investment Get Taxi have still failed to get one developed.

Where Taxi Apps are concerned the payment gateway is obviously a priority and is essential to the smooth running of the app, the one in which Get Taxi are processing card payments is both time consuming and staff intensive and a process of which most taxi drivers would not even consider using as you have to telephone the control room to get the payment approved which takes to long when you have the customer waiting in the back of the cab. It must be really embarrassing for Get Taxi when one of their app customers wants to pay by card and the driver processes the card payment through another supplier!

As I have stated before Get Taxi’s business model will not work and I am being proved to be right, I speak to many drivers who state that if Get Taxi had an app that they could download onto their own smart phone then they would consider signing up for the service but they really do not want to have another piece of equipment in their cab, obviously there are drivers who do not have a smart phone and prefer the driver box approach but the take up of smart phones by taxi drivers is rising an a phenomenal rate so an iPhone and Android app system makes sense especially as the new driver box is essentially an Android Tablet.

The new driver box also presents its own problems! If Get Taxi do decide to go down the app route they will very quickly find that their software is developed around the wrong way which shows their lack of research before designing the new software for the Android device, most apps that drivers use are in the portrait format whereas Get Taxi’s software is in the landscape format which would present real problems in convincing drivers to download their app unless they turn the software around to comply with the portrait format.

Also there is no way of scrubbing a job within the Get Taxi software other than calling the office and getting the dispatcher to scrub the job for you, there is also no automatic scrub payment for drivers but instead the driver has to log into his gettaxi.me account and request a scrub, this can;t even be done via the Get Taxi terminal but instead they expect the driver to log in via their own smart phone to the gettaxi.me site and request a scrub which is quite ironic as their excuse for having the driver box is that they state some drivers do not have smart phones and prefer to have the Get Taxi driver box!

Whilst working over the weekend I was not offered a job by Get Taxi that was attainable, by that I mean that all of the jobs that I was offered were over 2000 metres away from my current position! At one point on Saturday night I was getting offered 1 job after the other but they ranged from being 2000 metres away to 4000 metres away with most being in the higher end of the range which makes the jobs not worth running for. I became so cumbersome to keep rejecting these ridiculous job offers that I ended up just switching the terminal to busy for the rest of the night which is counter productive from Get Taxis point of view.

The other thing that amuses me is the number of drivers who when asked if they on Get Taxi confirm that they are but also add that the terminal is either at home or in the boot of the cab! Also the number of drivers who are buying iPad minis and say that the Get Taxi brackets are ideal for mounting their iPads, so I am sure Get Taxi must be really proud in the knowledge that at least their terminals (well the brackets) are of some use to Taxi Drivers!

If Get Taxi do  not get their act together soon I feel that they will become the next casualty in the Taxi App market, one wonders how they have been able to carry on so long with such a basic offering which is no further advanced than the original London Taxi App that Mick Coulter released and was obviously the first casualty of the app race. The trade need Get Taxi or a viable alternative to be competition for Hailo otherwise the trade will be at the mercy of just one app provider, the ideal competition for Hailo would have been a driver led and run app but as we know from history drivers from within this trade are unable to organise themselves and unwilling to invest in the future of their own trade and yet are happy to give 10% of their earnings over to apps supplied by outside interests but that is a whole other argument and one that I think has already been lost!

New Shows on London Taxi Radio

This week London Taxi Radio will premier 2 new shows from London Taxi Drivers.

The first is a 50s Music Show hosted by Rockin Cabbie Alan and will go out on Wednesday night between 7:00pm till 9:00pm and features all the best tunes from the 50s.

The Second is Kev The Cab’s mix show which will be going out on Friday night at 9:00pm.

Make sure that you tune in and give both of these show hosts your support.

We are still looking for Taxi Drivers who would like to host a show on London Taxi Radio, even if you would like to do it from the comfort of your own home then please get in touch as we have various software options that will enable you to do your show.

Just send an email to admin@londontaxiradio.co.uk

Free WordPress Hosting for Taxi Drivers

We currently have excess webhosting space available that we would like to offer to Taxi drivers who like to blog, rather than using one of these free services where you have a non descript domain name why not have your own real Top Level domain name and real WordPress webhosting which you can have full control over what plugins you want to install.

Just let us know what domain name you would like and we will register the domain name in your name.

The WordPress webhosting is free to any London Taxi Driver but unfortunately we are unable to suffer the expense of paying for domain registrations for Taxi drivers so this would be the only cost to you should you want to take up this offer and the cost is extremely reasonable at only 10 pounds per year which is fantastic value.

You can use WordPress for Blogging or for setting up a website as WordPress can be used as a fully fledged CMS website system, basically you are only limited by your own imagination with WordPress.

We will also set up 1 email address for you with this offer, this can be yourname@yourdomain.co.uk

This offer is not just open to London Taxi Drivers but to any Taxi Driver within the UK, the TLD that would be registered for you is of the .co.uk variety and if you search the web for comparable services you will find that the equivalent service would cost you in the region of 40 pounds per year if not more.

If you would like to take advantage of this offer then please get in touch.

Get Taxi & their business model

Get Taxi launched over 18 months ago now and have still yet to have a significant impact on the London Taxi App market even though initially they had more financial backing than their biggest rival.

Get Taxi launched to the driver with their “Driver Box” and a list of promised updates including Sat Nav and other things to be added to the box.

It is true that Get Taxi have had their problems, the first being the Driver Box which to be brutally honest was cheap and nasty, kept crashing and losing connection, had its power inlet in totally the wrong position for siting in the Taxi and had a really bad screen. Also they only seem to have 1000 of the initial driver boxes which limited the number of drivers that Get Taxi could sign up, this was also compounded by the problems with these boxes and replacements having to be sent out to drivers on a regular basis which further reduced the number of drivers that could be on Get Taxi.

Late in November I was invited to go and take a look at Get Taxis proposed new terminal and software, the funny thing was they did not have a terminal available to show us so instead showed us a presentation of the proposed software on a computer. The new software looked very good and more user friendly than that on the old Driver Box, we were also advised of a list of promised updates once again including Sat Nav, Free Wifi through the new terminal and other updates. Those of us who there were asked for our opinions and input on the new proposed software, we all offered our suggestions and were told that they would be considered and implemented if Get Taxi felt that would enhance the service to both the drivers and the passengers.

One of the things that I stated regulalry detered me from accepting any jobs was the distance that the jobs were from me and the five minutes free waiting time that Get Taxi state they give their customers but infact Get Taxi give the customers nothing, it is the drivers who give the passengers 5 minutes free waiting time which from discussions with other drivers is probably the most disliked part of both of the major Apps.I was told that the hailing range of jobs offered would be looked into and that they had no intention of getting rid of the 5 minutes free waiting time but would implement a minimum fare policy instead.

I was also one of the first drivers to be offered the new terminal for the trial, I have found the terminal to be reliable and quite a good interface which is user friendly and simple and effective but the problem of job offers being too far away is still there. Last night I was not offered a job under 1100 metres away from me and most were over 2000 metres away with the worst being 4200 metres away from me. Obviously Get Taxi have not listened to what the drivers have to say. There is no point in offering drivers jobs that far away as it is a waste of the drivers time and also the customer is left waiting hanging on, it would be far better for the customer to get a message saying there are no taxis available at the moment rather than them being kept hanging only to be let down in the end anyway.

Get Taxi have also announced this week and change in their pricing structure and the fact that they will be doing away with the minimum fare policy, this has come as no surprise as it was obviously costing Get Taxi a substantial amount of money. When a discussion ensued on Twitter regarding the changes drivers were informed “the box is free so use it as you please”

This brings into question Get Taxis whole business model? What is the in giving drivers an Android Tablet with no restrictions on use, surely this policy must be costing Get Taxi a vast amount of money. Most drivers nowdays have some form of smart phone either Android or iPhone so surely it would have been far better to offer a software download for those drivers and only give the Android Tablets out to those drivers who do not posses such a device. Come to think of it why did it need to be a tablet? Surely a cheap Android phone would have done the same job and been cheaper to buy in?

Get Taxis while operation seems to be an expensive way of achieving what others are doing a lot cheaper, they appear to want to be a Taxi App while at the same time a Radio Circuit!

They still have yet to implement a useable credit card payment gateway, surely spending money of credit card acceptance would have been better than buying in thousands of terminals that a lot of drivers rarely switch on?

Why do away with the minimum fare? If implemted in the correct way it would not cost Get taxi a penny! Even Addison Lee have a minimum fare structure for their passengers which I am told is 13.60 so even if a minimum fare of 10.00 was introduced for the customer of a night it would not cost Get Taxi anything.

I think Get Taxi seriously need to look at their operation very carefully if they want to be a player in the Taxi App market, so far they have shown a total lack of understanding of our trade and really need to take advice from drivers rather than those who have never driven a Taxi in London otherwise it will not be long before Get Taxi become the first casualty of the Taxi App race.

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