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Hong Kong taxis

Hong Kong taxi drivers have got worse since Uber crackdown

PUBLISHED : Friday, 16 June, 2017, 4:59pm
UPDATED : Monday, 02 October, 2017, 3:16pm

I agree with the letter by Chris Wright (“Service of taxi firms is appalling”, May 30).

How many more complaints does the government have to get from the public about taxi services? All we get from officials is that they will assess drivers’ performance and some could be fined, but I have not seen any evidence of this.

If anything, the drivers have got worse since the government cracked down on Uber. I am beginning to wonder what kind of hold taxi firms have on the government and why it does not see it as a priority to address this problem of a poor service.

When measures are proposed, the taxi firms mount protests and the government backs down with its tail between its legs.

I have lived here for 50 years and feel that Hong Kong’s biggest problem now is that it is not keeping pace with the rest of the world when it comes to providing basic needs and development of new technology.

We have the world’s best public transport system, but when it comes to the car-hire sector, there is a need for upgrades and healthy competition.

We need car-hailing apps like Uber. Consumers want to have a choice and access to better quality services. They want drivers who are polite, will turn down the volume of the radio when asked, and who know where they are going.

Hong Kong is relatively small compared to other major cities, so knowing where streets are and their names in English should not be too difficult. Yet, sometimes, it is the passengers who have to give directions. And if they don’t know where to go, then they are out of luck.

I do not understand why this is a problem the government finds so difficult to solve.

It is not just Honkongers who want to see a vastly improved taxi service; tourists will also benefit. In this sector, Hong Kong lags behind the rest of the developed world.

The taxi companies have had it too easy here for too long with no competition. It is now time for a serious change.

Beth Narain, Sai Ying Pun