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Kenyans to pay more for digital ride hailing services

Kenya , 20 Jul 2018

Kenyans to pay more for digital ride hailing services

Digital taxi service Taxify has confirmed it will adjust its prices following two weeks of protest action by driver partners in Nairobi.

The company said fares for the service will be increased, but did not confirm the exact amounts.

"There has been a recent increase in fuel prices and our analysis has shown that this change will affect driver-partner operational costs which will, in turn, affect their earnings. To ensure earnings remain strong, we have adjusted our fares a little higher," said Shivachi Muleji, Taxify General Manager for East Africa.

Uber was non-committal on price changes and said only that it will review the MoU signed by the DATP (Digital App Taxi Providers) and the government to see what pricing would be applicable.

"The Memorandum of Understanding signed on 11 July 2018 by transport providers is to promote mutual benefits for all parties in terms of driver wellbeing, to support all parties in providing appropriate communication strategies within the industry; and to promote the development and improvement of transport services for taxi owners, drivers and digital app providers," read a statement issued by an Uber spokesperson.

According to the company, the Automobile Association (AA) pricing policy is just a guideline for consideration when looking at operating costs - but not an obligation to adjust pricing.

Uber has its own tried and tested pricing model globally, the spokesperson added.

As per the AA policy, vehicles with capacities of between 850cc to 1050cc should pay Kshs 26/km; capacities between 1050cc to 1300cc rates are Kshs 42/km; Kshs 45/km for 1300cc to 1500cc vehicles and Kshs 58/km for 1500cc to 1800cc vehicles.

UberX service charges Ksh 27/km, while Taxify's rates are Kshs 30/km. The two introduced smaller CC vehicles, namely Uber Chap Chap and TaxifyGo, which charge much less per kilometre: Kshs 16/km and Kshs 22/km respectively.

LittleCab has also adjusted its pricing.

In a statement sent out yesterday, Kamal Budhabhatti, CEO of LittleCab said that the company had adjusted their pricing per kilometre from Kshs30 to Kshs35 to benefit their partner drivers.

Budhabhatti urged riders to accept the price adjustment to benefit the partner drivers, a statement that was generally met with positive response on social media.


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