News Karnataka
Thursday, December 01 2022
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‘Uber’ price wars by cab aggregators forcing passengers to say ‘ola’ to alternative transport!

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Bangalore: Assume this tricky situation! Out of around 2,000 Meru airport cabs in the city, only 500 are now operating. Out of around 500 KSTDC airport cabs just 50 are operational, thanks to the price war launched by the cab aggregators Ola and Uber which are offering KIAL pick up and drop service from the city for just Rs.499. But come December 30 and 31, there will not be any Ola and Uber services to the airport.

Confused? This is the impact of price war launched by the cab aggregators in Bangalore city. All started last week with Uber and Ola offering KIAL pick up and drop service for just Rs.499 with the ambition of capturing the market. Till then KSTDC and MERU cabs were charging anywhere between Rs.700 to Rs.800 beside toll charge. When Ola and Uber launched this fare war which was inclusive of toll charges, MERU and KSTDC cabs were forced to stop their services.

But the anti-climax of this story is very interesting. Within two weeks after launching fare war, Ola and Uber are now at the receiving end. Reason-Cab drivers attached to these two aggregators have announced no KIAL service on December 30 and 31. According to the drivers, due to the fare war they were losing heavy income.

Ola and Uber cab drivers say it is impossible to operate airport service for just Rs.499. “Toll charge alone is Rs.120. We need to pay 25 percent of the collection per trip to our companies. Amount saved is not even enough for fuel. So we have decided to stop the service,” said a cab driver.

But it is the poor airport passengers who will be at the receiving end in this war. According to the sources following the fare war Meru is planning to withdraw its airport services. “So there will not be any cabs in airport on December 30 and 31,” explained an officer from the transport department. “Many had warned about the side effects of cab aggregations as early as two years ago. And this is actually coming true now. In the name of marketing strategy they are creating problems for all,” he added.

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