Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Uber wins all-round thumbs up from users

The Uber Black service uses luxurious sedans such as Toyota Camry, Nissan Teana, and Honda Accord while the uberX provides a lower range service which uses Perodua Myvi, Nissan Almera and Toyota Vios

KUALA LUMPUR: Taxi drivers are crying foul over the Uber Taxi services operations in Malaysia claiming that the services come across a 'stumbling block' which has hindered their daily operations.

While there have been operations undertaken by the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) to curtail Uber services, users are singing a different tune in support of its services. outlet supervisor, Nurul Wahida Othman, 24, subscribes to Uber citing that the services are more reliable and come in handy for her to commute to work.

‘Uber is much easier to access,’ said Wahida, who used to wait for listless hours to get a taxi from her home to her workplace which is located five minutes from her residence.

Shein Shahin, who is a regular Uber user said she understands the plight of the taxi drivers. The TV producer who resides in Bangsar said taxi operators should view Uber as a healthy competition.

“Uber services are better and exclusive. Some Uber drivers even provide water bottles,” said Shein, adding that the method of payments (using credit and debit cards) is 'safer'.

“The taxi drivers should broaden their minds,” said Shein, referring to the attractive promotions that are offered by Uber in increasing competitiveness among taxi operators.

Another Uber customer, who prefers to be known as Jay said, “security, efficiency, transparency are the reasons that I use Uber."

Said Jay, he would have to fork out RM30 to get from Point A to Point B after midnight instead of RM6 with Uber.

He admits that the stark difference has been the main factor for him to subscribe to Uber services. In a month, he would use Uber on an average of five times.

Jay said he is also puzzled that many taxi drivers would deliberately hike up taxi fares but yet failed to charge according to the meters but yet let off the hook scot-free.

Whether it is the lack of integrity in the system or its existence that have contributed to the dissatisfaction among taxi drivers, have left much to be desired.

Leo Wan Yu, 22, said, “everyone has the right to complain but personally, I am not convinced by the reasons why taxis are boycotting Uber. I'm sure consumers welcome the competition and since Uber offers better, cheaper and safer, then why not?"

Leon, who uses the Uber service regularly said that the service is safer as the vehicle is easily traceable and cheaper while the drivers are largely courteous.

Taxi drivers need to consider in revamping their services by improvising their manners and attitude by keeping the cleanliness of their vehicles to raise the bar, said Wan Yu, who is a student.

For King’s College London student Lim Yau Hui, 19, Uber taxi drivers are “quick and courteous, won't turn a ride down or make fixed fare quotes,”

Lim said the the services rendered by Uber taxis are far superior, so “taxi drivers should buck up, scrap the decades-old cars and embrace technology."

Uber is a ride-sharing service which connects passengers with drivers of vehicles for hire through its App.

For the uninitiated, the business kicked off as a start-up in San Francisco in 2009.

In Kuala Lumpur, the Uber service was made available last year and can be accessed at

The Uber Black service uses luxurious sedans such as Toyota Camry, Nissan Teana, and Honda Accord while the uberX provides a lower range service which uses Perodua Myvi, Nissan Almera and Toyota Vios.

Uber has been under fire by the authorities who promised to conduct a nationwide crackdown on its service on Oct 1.

JPJ director-general Datuk Seri Ismail Ahmad had earlier said the offenses came under Section 16 of the Land Public Transportation Act and Section 23 of the Road Transport Act.

However, Netizens have rallied in favour of the transport company Uber one day after it started an online campaign for Malaysians to voice their support in ensuring the smooth sailing of its operations in the country.

- source: Astro Awani

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