Taxi Driver Online

UK cab trade debate and advice
It is currently Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:19 pm

All times are UTC [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 42 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3
Author Message
PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 9:19 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 7:30 pm
Posts: 42356
Location: 1066 Country
Quote:
Are there examples of tariff cards which show a substantial booking fee that would justify being hiked several miles?

London has a £2 booking fee.

_________________
IDFIMH


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 9:41 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2007 1:39 pm
Posts: 1399
Sussex wrote:
Quote:
Are there examples of tariff cards which show a substantial booking fee that would justify being hiked several miles?

London has a £2 booking fee.


Tariff 1
HACKNEY CARRIAGE TABLE OF FARES Applicable from 12 noon 1st September 2017
For hirings commenced between 07.01 and 23.59
If the distance does not exceed 660 yards for the whole distance:
£2.60
For each of the subsequent 310 yards or uncompleted part thereof:
30p
Waiting Time: For each period of 40 seconds or uncompleted part thereof
10p
Tariff 2
Tariff 3
For hirings commenced between midnight and 07.00
For hirings commenced between 19.00 and midnight on the 24th December For hirings commenced between 19.00 and midnight on the 31st December For hirings commencing on any Bank Holiday or Public Holiday
If the distance does not exceed 660 yards for the whole distance:
£3.80
For each subsequent 220 yards or uncompleted part thereof:
30p
Waiting time: For each period of 40 seconds or uncompleted part thereof
10p
For hirings commenced between 00.01 25th December and 07.00 27th December For hirings commenced between 00.01 1st January and 07.00 2nd January
If the distance does not exceed 880 yards for the whole distance:
£5.00
For each subsequent 220 yards or uncompleted part thereof:
40p
Waiting time: For each period of 40 seconds or uncompleted part thereof
10p
For each passenger in excess of one
[for the purpose two children aged 11 or under to count as one passenger for the whole distance]
20p
For each perambulator or article of luggage carried outside the passenger compartment of the vehicle
20p
Soiling Charge: A charge may be requested if the passenger[s] soils the vehicle. This will not exceed £75.00
The driver may at his/her discretion require the payment of an agreed amount in advance of the journey. A receipt will be given. The amount will be set against the metered fare.
A booking fee up to a maximum of £4.00 may be charged where:
(a) (b)
The Hackney carriage is booked in advance; and
(i) The Customer shall be told the cost of the booking fee at the time that the booking is taken and the amount recorded in the booking log; and
(ii) The customer shall be told that the booking fee is in addition to the fare for the journey; and
The hiring involves a separate journey of at least one mile, starting from the taxi rank or the operator’s premises, to the pick up point.
(c)
Any complaints regarding the vehicle and/or driver should be addressed to the Licensing Section, Environmental Services, Town Hall, Dalton Square, Lancaster, LA1 1PJ. Telephone [01524] 582033. Email licensing@lancaster.gov.uk


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 9:54 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2007 1:39 pm
Posts: 1399
In 2011. Of the 337 authorities surveyed, 44 expressly regulated booking fees capping them between £20 at Alnwick DC down to 20p in Brighton and Hove for a telephone booking. Other authorities allow a booking fee that varies depending how far from the rank the taxi was at the time of the booking; others also require the passenger to be informed or for there to be an agreement to charge such fee; others allow a charge per mile up to a maximum distance from the passenger. Only two authorities expressly prohibit booking fees. The London Cab Order 1934 caps telephone booking fees at £2.00.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Mar 02, 2019 10:06 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2007 1:39 pm
Posts: 1399
East Lindsey
For each mile, or uncompleted part thereof, to a maximum distance of 15 miles, 50p
travelled by the carriage to a hirer “pick up” point at a stated place other than a hackney carriage stand or the proprietor’s normal base of operation. The customer must be told the amount of the booking fee at the time of booking.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:30 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed May 16, 2012 6:33 am
Posts: 2732
Good find from MCF about the survey there, which is part of the Law Commission's 2014 report, from the section on booking fees.

Have copied the relevant section in full below, which might contain information relevant to the thread. Have tried to format it so that it looks as much as possible like the original. But watch out for the footnote numbers, which are normally supposed to be slightly higher than the text (superscript), but you can't do that on here, so they're just included as normal text, although slightly smaller. (If that doesn't make sense then it might make a bit more sense if you actually read the thing.)

Also, the reason the footnotes aren't all together is because I've just left them in the same position as they appear in the original document, so they correspond to the bottom of the page.

(Kind of thing I wish I hadn't bothered with now - would have been easier just to include link to original document rather than fannying about with all the formatting etc. But seemed like good idea at the time :idea: :-s ](*,) )


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:31 am 
Offline

Joined: Wed May 16, 2012 6:33 am
Posts: 2732
RE-BOOKED TAXI FARES AND BOOKING FEES

9.20 In our consultation paper, we asked whether taxi drivers should be allowed to
charge more than the metered fare for pre-booked journeys on the same basis as
private hire vehicles, whose prices are unregulated.15

15 Reforming the Law of Taxi and Private Hire Services (2012) Law Commission Consultation
Paper No 203, question 44.


9.21 In England and Wales, including London, licensing authorities have very broad
powers to regulate all charges in connection with the hire of a taxi or with the
arrangements for the hire.16 Pre-booked taxi journeys are regulated on the same
basis as hail and rank journeys. Case law has confirmed that fare regulation and
overcharging offences also cover how much can be charged as a booking fee.17
This is significant because it means that it is unlawful to charge a booking fee
unless the relevant licensing authority has expressly authorised it; or to charge
any more than the licensing authority has allowed.18

9.22 Booking fees have gained additional significance with the increased market
presence of smartphone apps being used to arrange taxi services. The pricing
models of these new apps often do not fit clearly within the current regulated fare
structure.19 For example, at the time of writing, the London Cab Order refers to a
maximum booking fee for “telephone bookings” but is silent on internet
bookings.20 Transport for London has decided to extend its £2.00 telephone
booking surcharge to cover bookings made using mobile phones, smartphones
apps and online services in its annual revision of taxi fares and tariffs for
2014/2015.21

9.23 There are also some significant differences between the overcharging offences in
London compared to the rest of England and Wales. In London, “every driver of
a hackney carriage who shall demand or take more than the proper fare” (which
covers any payment in relation to the hire, therefore including booking fees)
commits an offence. The absence in London of an overcharging offence by
intermediaries means that payments in excess of the permitted maximum paid
directly to smartphone apps, for example, could not be prosecuted; however,
payments to drivers clearly could be.

16 Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, s 65 for England and Wales; and
London Cab and Stage Carriage Act 1907, s 1 for London. Only journeys ending beyond
the licensing areas fall outside the scope of regulation.

17 See House v Reynolds [1977] WLR 88 and, for London, Bassam v Green [1981] RTR 362.

18 The treatment of booking fees varies across licensing authorities. For England and Wales,
outside London, we have used data compiled by the National Private Hire Association in
2011. Of the 337 authorities surveyed, 44 expressly regulated booking fees capping them
between £20 at Alnwick DC down to 20p in Brighton and Hove for a telephone booking.
Other authorities allow a booking fee that varies depending how far from the rank the taxi
was at the time of the booking; others also require the passenger to be informed or for
there to be an agreement to charge such fee; others allow a charge per mile up to a
maximum distance from the passenger. Only two authorities expressly prohibit booking
fees. The London Cab Order 1934 caps telephone booking fees at £2.00.

19 See, for example, Hailo’s minimum fare requirement: https://hailocab.com/blog/2014/0
1/03/Minimum-fares-reduced-by-20%25 (last visited 19 May 2014).

20 London Cab Order 1934, para 40(4)(b).

21 http://www.tfl.gov.uk/info-for/media/press-releases/201 4/february/tfl-board-agreeslowest-taxi-fares-rise-in-more-than-10-years (last visited 19 May 2014)


9.24 By contrast, outside London, any person charging a “rate of fares or charges”
greater than the maximum allowed by the licensing authority can be
prosecuted.22 Both drivers and smartphone apps are therefore prohibited from
receiving payments beyond the regulated amounts.

Consultation
9.25 Most stakeholders disagreed with removing price controls on pre-booked taxi
journeys, though a significant number agreed. Those who disagreed felt that
pricing freedom would be open to abuse and that customers deserved the
security of metered payment. However, some argued that in this capacity taxis
were no different from private hire vehicles and should have the same market
advantages.

9.26 The National Association of Licensing Enforcement Officers disagreed with our
suggestion, arguing that:

    It is open to tariffs to include a “booking fee” but if taxis truly wish to
    compete with a market force driven service like private hire they
    should not then be on time and distance calculation but should be on
    distance only like the majority of private hire services nationwide.

9.27 One Institute of Licensing member took a similar view, recommending permitting
booking fees but no more. The member also suggested that these should be
displayed on the tariff card rather than simply added at the end of the journey.

9.28 Even where stakeholders agreed, many felt there should be limitations. For
example, the National Taxi Association felt that any additional charge should only
cover dead mileage. Transport for London suggested that only companies
approved by Transport for London (and presumably other licensing authorities)
should have the ability to charge unregulated fares, and that they should be
subject to the following stringent requirements:

    (1) publishing details of the fares charged;
    (2) keeping, in accordance with appropriate processes, a record of all
    bookings, including passenger details, date of booking, date of journey,
    destination, fare charged, and the driver and vehicle used, for a minimum
    of six months;
    (3) being a limited company or registered/friendly society;
    (4) having structures in place to check the licence status of participating
    drivers, the vehicles they use and to ensure that any restrictions on
    plying for hire are complied with; and
    (5) dealing with complaints.

22 Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976, s 67(2). Owners are also liable to
a penalty outside London, although the scope of their liability is not exactly the same as
that of the drivers. Proprietors can be prosecuted if the demand relates to an excessive
fare, but only in respect of amounts charged “as a fare” rather than payments made in
respect of collateral agreements. By contrast, proprietors in London are not liable for
overcharging offences.


9.29 Welsh local authorities, in their joint response, felt that charging above the
metered fare should only be allowed where agreed in advance. The GMB agreed
with this suggestion. The United Cabbies Group felt that:

    It would be anticompetitive and unfair to require taxis to have
    regulated pre-booked fares whilst private hire vehicles use
    unregulated pre-booked fares.

9.30 As we noted above, since the close of consultation, regulators and stakeholders
have highlighted the problems of extra charges by smartphone apps. Trade
representatives worried that taxi drivers might unwittingly be committing
overcharging offences if they requested payment in respect of internet booking
fees that had not been authorised by their local licensing authority.

Discussion
9.31 We accept that any departure from the maximum price allowed by a meter or fare
table could undermine the protections which price controls are intended to
provide in taxi regulation. Any modification of this position needs both to have a
strong justification and to be tightly framed.

9.32 The justifications for imposing both quality standards and fare regulation on taxis
relate to problems of inequalities of bargaining power in the way rank and hail
markets work. Unlike quality standards, price controls can be journey-specific and
are capable of being lifted in respect of (competitive) pre-booked work. However,
we accept stakeholders’ concerns regarding the severe difficulties this could give
rise to as a matter of enforcement. Moreover, it could undermine compellability,
and provide scope for abuse of vulnerable customers if passengers who for
practical reasons need to pre-book could be required to pay above the regulated
fare for a journey within the compellable distance.

9.33 In light of the above, we think that it would not be practicable to de-regulate
completely the fares charged by taxis working on a pre-booked basis. To do so
would be too disruptive of the two tier system, and would undermine the
important differences which mark the way taxis are regulated compared to private
hire services.

9.34 As regards journeys commencing in the licensing area but ending beyond the
compellable distance, we have already recommended that departure from the
metered fare must be the subject of agreement in advance. We consider that that
must equally be the case when the journey is pre-booked.

9.35 Taxi journeys commencing outside the licensing area (which, to be lawful, must
be pre-booked) are not currently subject to fare regulation. We do not propose
disturbing that position. We recommend, however, that taxi drivers be under a
duty, broadly corresponding to that of private hire operators, to state a price or a
price estimate on request and to make a record of any such price information
given.

Booking charges
9.36 The regulation of pre-booked taxi charges creates an imbalance of regulation
between taxis and private hire vehicles in a market where they are both
competing for the same work, potentially placing taxis at a disadvantage. We
have therefore considered whether aspects of taxi charging for pre-booked
journeys, and in particular booking charges collected by or on behalf of a third
party intermediary, might be de-regulated without undermining the two tier
system and the important consumer protections which fare controls provide. We
were particularly concerned with finding a proper place for smartphone apps
within the pricing structure for taxi journeys.

9.37 Unlike other “extra” charges relating to the hire (which may relate to things such
as excess baggage, soiling charges or road tolls for example), fees charged to
customers for finding them an available taxi are an aspect of a more competitive
market being opened up by the new technology. We consider that there are
strong consumer benefits in allowing third party arrangement fees to be outside
fare regulation, opening up competition within the taxi market and with private
hire services.

9.38 The draft Bill provides that third party arrangement fees will only be unregulated if
agreed in advance;23 this only applies to fees agreed with third parties: fees
charged by taxi drivers for taking bookings will continue to be capable of being
regulated, so as to avoid the risks of abuse or evidential difficulties that could
arise if drivers were allowed to take elements of remuneration for themselves that
were unregulated.

9.39 Booking fees received by intermediaries directly from the passenger (such as
where the user of an app pays by credit card) ought not to give rise to problems
of distinguishing them from unlawful additions to the regulated fare. We
recommend that they be unregulated.

9.40 Indeed, a number of licensing authorities already allow third party arrangement
fees to be charged provided they are agreed with the customer in advance.24 As
is already the position outside London, the new overcharging offence in our draft
Bill can be committed by any person that demands more than the proper charge,
and not just the driver.25

9.41 We have also considered whether taxi drivers should be permitted to collect
unregulated booking charges on behalf of intermediaries, an arrangement that
can be convenient to the passenger who prefers to make one payment at the
conclusion of the journey. We have concluded that they should.

23 Draft Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles Bill clause 31(8) and (9).

24 We noted such requirements in Sunderland, Berwick-upon-Tweed, North Norfolk and
Elmbridge for example.

25 Draft Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles Bill, clause 32(5).


9.42 As with other unregulated booking fees charged by intermediaries, those that are
to be collected by the driver on behalf of the intermediary will have to have been
agreed in advance between the intermediary and the passenger, who will be in a
position to know whether the amount subsequently demanded by the driver
corresponds to what was agreed. The intermediary can be expected to have
made a record of the booking and to have an interest in collecting payment of the
booking fee from the driver. We do not rule out the possibility of abuse,
particularly where bookings are accepted by telephone, but we do not consider
that the risk of it is sufficiently great to justify regulating booking fees charged by
third parties or outlawing this flexible method of collecting them.

    Recommendation 50

    We recommend that licensing authorities should retain the
    power to regulate fares charged for pre-booked taxi journeys.
    However, there should be no power to regulate third party
    booking fees, provided these are agreed in advance.

9.43 This recommendation is given effect by clause 31 of our draft Bill.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:05 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Aug 04, 2012 11:17 pm
Posts: 2291
One of the problems where I used to work on Romney Marsh was the vast amount of dead mileage involved. That's one reason there's more PH in the area than HC. As far as I remember there were 38 PH and 2 HC working the marsh.

It would be nothing to get a booking enquiry from say Newchurch which is 8 miles from my old base in New Romney to Dymchurch, another 8 miles along country lanes, then 4 miles back along the A259 to get back to base. there was rarely a chance to get another fare from Dymchurch to New Romney that tied in with that sort of trip. People there expected the fare to be about a fiver for a 20 mile round trip for me! One of the reasons I packed it in a few years ago, 50% dead mileage on every job!

Mind you, we didn't have meters so always quoted an estimated fare depending on the actual mileage.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:48 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2007 11:27 pm
Posts: 17568
Well, our licensing team say they have sought legal advice and the district can't be changed. So the villages still can't have a taxi service and the buses are being cut.

_________________
Grandad,
old fart with no heart


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:59 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 7:30 pm
Posts: 42356
Location: 1066 Country
grandad wrote:
Well, our licensing team say they have sought legal advice and the district can't be changed. So the villages still can't have a taxi service and the buses are being cut.

Did you/they consider the optional booking charge?

_________________
IDFIMH


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 9:13 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:56 pm
Posts: 1584
grandad wrote:
Well, our licensing team say they have sought legal advice and the district can't be changed. So the villages still can't have a taxi service and the buses are being cut.


The first paragraphs of the 1976 Act clearly states what constitutes the district,the definition covers both private hire and TAXI licensing.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2019 9:40 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:06 pm
Posts: 21892
Location: A City near Birmingham
grandad wrote:
Well, our licensing team say they have sought legal advice and the district can't be changed. So the villages still can't have a taxi service and the buses are being cut.



lifes a 8itch

_________________
Freedom is never free


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:59 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2007 11:27 pm
Posts: 17568
Sussex wrote:
grandad wrote:
Well, our licensing team say they have sought legal advice and the district can't be changed. So the villages still can't have a taxi service and the buses are being cut.

Did you/they consider the optional booking charge?

On this occasion they were not asked to consider this.

_________________
Grandad,
old fart with no heart


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 42 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3

All times are UTC [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 11 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group