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Uber, Über Alles?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Andrew Flannigan, Sep 23, 2017.

  1. Footloose

    Footloose Well-Known Member

    I've never flown RyanAir, but I don't think he'd treat his pilots that stingily - they probably get 300ml of still water and a cheese sandwich. - By the way, that reminds me, who remembers how appetising BR's (pre-privatisation) railway station sandwiches were? o_O
     
  2. neilt3

    neilt3 Well-Known Member

    [QUOTEaccordingloose, post: 1458879, member: 7335"]I've never flown RyanAir, but I don't think he'd treat his pilots that stingily - they probably get 300ml of still water and a cheese sandwich. - By the way, that reminds me, who remembers how appetising BR's (pre-privatisation) railway station sandwiches were? o_O[/QUOTE]

    Not acording to the staff that were being interviewed on the radio last week .
    If they wanted water , they had to pay for it .
     
  3. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    The major difference is that minicabs are regulated - for example the MOT requirements for a taxi cab or hackney carriage are far more stringent than they are for ordinary cars. As well as a normal UK driving licence a minicab or hackney driver must also have their taxi operator's licence which, I believe, is dependent on the driver having a criminal records check as well as a check to ensure that the individual is not barred from working with children or vulnerable adults. Insurance costs for running a vehicle as a licenced taxi cab or hackney carriage are higher than for a normal private vehicle.

    Uber isn't a taxi company - it's a 'ride sharing app'. It's a bit of jiggery pokery that conveniently gets them around all of the laws that regulate normal taxis. You set up an account with Uber and pay them for your journey. They, in turn, pay the driver who has taken you on your journey and the whole set-up is arranged so that the person who has driven you has quite simply given you a lift - any payment they receive from Uber is a gratuity.

    The bottom line is that Uber drivers have no special licence and therefore haven't been vetted in any way other than passing Uber's application standards. Their vehicles have no special insurance and don't have to meet the same rigorous mechanical standards as a 'proper' taxi.

    An additional consideration which was mentioned in the London ruling is that a normal taxi company has a legal obligation to record all journeys and to submit that information to the proper authorities when faced with a reasonable demand. Uber - as a smartphone app - is subject to no such obligation.

    Uber tends to have lower fares than normal taxis because all of the licensing and insurance obligations of a normal taxi company don't apply to them. They also have a system whereby both the driver and the passenger receive a rating which can be used to determine whether they are asked to make a pick-up, or are picked up themselves for future journeys.

    Finally, because Uber isn't a taxi company it isn't subject to the pricing regulations which local authorities apply to regular taxis, which means that while their fares are usually lower than their competitors, there's no law to stop them from 'adjusting' their prices at times of high demand (Friday nights, Christmas, New Year etc).

    Cheers, Jeff
     
    Andrew Flannigan likes this.
  4. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    ^ Not 100% accurate. Certainly in Newcastle upon Tyne and probably elsewhere outside of London, Uber vehicles and drivers are licensed by the local authority. The fares charged by Private Hire Vehicles are not regulated by local authorities, but by the operator (office or in the case of Uber, by Uber). Hackney Carriage fares are set and regulated by the local authority, which is the reason they vary quite widely from one council area to others. They are set according to local conditions, often in conjunction with the trade. It is true to say that Uber are not liked by others in the same line of business. In insurance terms it is hire and reward, which makes it that the vehicle is actually hired by Uber if the actual passenger is not directly paying the driver, so in reality they need appropriate (and expensive) insurance.

    One thing I have noticed is that the driving standards of Uber drivers seem to be amongst the lowest I have seen in the business.
     
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  5. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the correction - my information was based on information given to me by a legitimate taxi driver who, on reflection, may have been a little biased against them!

    Cheers, Jeff
     
  6. AndyTake2

    AndyTake2 Well-Known Member

    My brother is a Private Hire cab driver in Norwich.
    He had to get a CRB clearance, and also pass a knowledge of the area test (not as in depth as cab drivers) but has to know how to get from one place to the other, avoiding Lights etc.
    He hires his vehicle from a local fleet, and has to pay that before he earns any money. That is of course dependant on the controller giving him some fares, rather than passing it to family members as one company did.
     
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  7. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    Generally a driver is charged with taking the shortest available route, unless directed otherwise. In these days of Satnav less street knowledge is really necessary, however local places such as churches, pubs, shops and the like still need to be the driver's cache of know-wheres.

    Driving a PH vehicle is a pretty thankless occupation, stuck between the public and the company, with a large weekly expenditure before there is anything left for the driver.
     
  8. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    Whenever I have used Uber, I got the photo of and the name of the driver together with the vehicles reg, so I can't see that it would be that easy to hide.
     
  9. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    If you order your Uber under the name 'Police Firearms Office Nige' then they're hardly going to send a crim to pick you up...

    Cheers, Jeff
     
  10. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    That's not quite how it works, the system will offer the job to the closest available car in the locale.
     
  11. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    But they do send the ID of the driver. I have used uber here and elsewhere in the world. From a purely customer point of view I cannot fault them.
     
  12. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Unless perhaps they have been forewarned that you are or were a police firearms officer...

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  13. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Not in the states, where if you're involved in the regulation of Uber their app won't send you a car at all...
     
  14. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Nick,

    Intriguing. I'd like to know more. If it's not too much trouble, can you provide a link?

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  15. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

  16. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    You're a large solid bloke. I think that women in particular are at risk of a different experience...
     
  17. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Dear Nick,

    Wonderful, thanks. I think I read something similar in the Graun a while back but I couldn't remember the details. Also, I'm grateful for a non-Graun perspective -- though I've long wanted one of those (possibly apocryphal) T-shirts, WOOLLY MINDED GUARDIAN READERS AGAINST THE BOMB.

    As for dodginess, 100% agreement.

    Cheers,

    R.
     
  18. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately some will be. Long before uber young women were getting raped and assaulted by private hire drivers in Manchester. Maybe flagged down in the street. There they had no details of the car or drivers at all. I used to tell my daughter to take a photo of any taxi or private hire cars reg plate before she got in one.
     
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