Written on the 17 May 2016 by Laura Daquino


IF price is stopping you, taxis will switch to fixed fares as of today thanks to fintech innovator ingogo.

The system available in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide is doing away with traditional metered fares, letting customers book fixed fare cabs from today.

It will be the first Australian taxi booking service and app to offer such a solution.

Hamish Petrie (pictured), ingogo CEO, says the redesigned application is the next stage in providing a 'superior experience'.

His company has seen almost 1500 per cent growth in five years because of its approach to the taxi industry and was recently singled out by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull as an innovator to watch.

ingogo already offers the ability to hire a taxi up to 48 hours in advance, book a taxi pre-arrival at the airport, and security features such as a lost and found section.

"ingogo already offers the most robust suite of services through our app, this is another feather in that cap," says Petrie.

"Our intention is to keep taxi drivers competitive both in terms of service and pricing transparency."

The algorithm that determines the fare price takes into account the distance and expected time using the most efficient route to the destination, traffic conditions, as well as any tolls or fees that might accrue through the trip.

A precise determination of the fare is provided at the point a customer enters the trip details into the application. Only once the customer accepts the fare will the taxi be booked and a driver sent to pick them up.

ingogo says there is no surge pricing or hidden surprises, and the price is comparable to what would show up on the same trip if it was a standard metered fare.

"Legislation expected in NSW will soon require an estimate when booking, but ingogo is now taking that to the next level. Plus, passengers can jump straight out of the cab as payment and receipts are automated," says Petrie.

"We know passengers are wanting certainty and consistency. We are the first to address the problem."

Chief marketing officer at ingogo, Jeff Lim, says the company's vision is to 'go one better'.

Starting in 2011 and launching a passenger app in 2012, ingogo outgrew Sydney to spread across Australia in a short number of years. The business launched in Perth 12 month ago, for example, to now have 70 per cent of the city's taxi driver market.

"We look at what's happening in domestic markets, what's appearing in international markets, and look at ways to do it better and create something from scratch," says Lim.

"We are very much for the worker and appreciate what industry we have come from."

Lim says the model is superior to what Uber is offering because of this.

"Uber has explicitly stated their intentions for what they want to do. While they are testing driverless cars, they are still recruiting and using drivers for rideshares," says Lim.

"But there is a definite, stated intention to replace those drivers with driverless cars. Any money currently paying a driver now, they kick themselves because they wouldn't need a driver. Their aim is to disrupt - the taxi industry and the working model."

Author: Laura Daquino Connect via: Twitter LinkedIn





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