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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2019 11:10 am 
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Where to start with this :?

Headline makes it sound like the increases are mega, but in fact they're tiny - a couple of percent or so, by the looks of it. All they seem to be doing is reducing the flag distance by 100 yards, as far as I can tell :-s

So I don't think the headline is correct - Fife is already the second most expensive place in Scotland, and the marginal fare increases will change nothing in that regard.


Fife could become second most expensive place in Scotland to hire taxi as operators push for fare rise

https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/lo ... fare-rise/

Taxi and private hire operators in Fife are pushing for a rise in fares amid suggestions the sector is in a “perilous” state.

The proposed increase, which is expected to be rubber-stamped by the region’s regulation and licensing committee on Tuesday, would see the initial yardage reduced from 1,000 yards to 900 yards for both stages one and two – effectively 24 hours a day.

The proposed changes would put the average two-mile journey during the day up by 10p to £6.70, while the night-time rate would rise by 15p to £8.35 for a two-mile jaunt.

That would make Fife one of the most expensive regions in Scotland to hire a cab, with the average tariff one rate – between 6am and 10pm – across the UK currently sitting at £5.92. North of the border, only East Lothian’s two-mile average of £7 is higher.

Five taxi companies or associations provided written representations to Fife Council on the issue, and all advocated a fare increase after fares did not change last year.

William Watson, on behalf of the Glenrothes Taxi Association, insisted that doing nothing this year is “not a viable option”.

“Currently the taxi business in Glenrothes in particular is in a perilous state,” he said.

“Owing to the closure in the last year of Styx nightclub, the upcoming closure of Warout Stadium Social Club, the closing of several shops in the Kingdom Centre and Kitty’s nightclub in Kirkcaldy, it leaves very little trade during the day and certainly less after midnight to be sought.

“There has been a reduction in school contracts available as well as social work contracts, then add in the running costs for maintenance, fuel, minimum wage and a further 10% rise in the cost of a hackney by the council as well as an insurance hike.

“Couple this with the law passed on card payments, whereby no extra charge other than the actual cost of the fare is allowed, and VAT included in the fare price, we now have death by a thousands cuts is happening to the trade.”

In a letter to committee, Sam Green and Peter Meldrum from Magnum Taxis stressed operating taxis is not all about fuel costs, pointing out that wages accounted for around 70% of outgoings.

“This may not be the same for the single owner/driver businesses but for us and many fleet owners it’s the ever increasing motor insurance costs, motor maintenance costs, council licensing costs, but the biggest increase to our businesses are the staff wages,” the letter said.

“As councillors you are continually asking us to improve our standards so it’s up to you to provide us with a reasonable fare structure that will allow us to continue to reinvest in our business.”

The proposed changes, which are likely to come into effect in December, would mean the current flag fares of £3.20 between 6am and 10pm and £3.95 between 10pm and 6am will remain, but it will cost more due to the yardage change – with 20p added on to the fare for each additional 150 yards travelled.

How Fife compares to other areas (for a tariff one two-mile average):

London (Heathrow) – £10.60

London – £7.80

East Lothian – £7.00

Fife – £6.60

Glasgow – £6.50

Edinburgh – £6.35

Angus – £5.70

Dundee City – £5.66

Perth and Kinross – £5.40


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2019 11:20 am 
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Quote:
In a letter to committee, Sam Green and Peter Meldrum from Magnum Taxis stressed operating taxis is not all about fuel costs, pointing out that wages accounted for around 70% of outgoings.

“This may not be the same for the single owner/driver businesses but for us and many fleet owners it’s the ever increasing motor insurance costs, motor maintenance costs, council licensing costs, but the biggest increase to our businesses are the staff wages,” the letter said.


Can't be bothered looking back, but sounds like that's *exactly* the same letter as they submitted a couple of years ago :badgrin:

I mean, they make it sound like single owner/drivers like me don't have to worry about insurance, maintenance, licence fees, blah, blah ](*,)

Quote:
The proposed changes, which are likely to come into effect in December, would mean the current flag fares of £3.20 between 6am and 10pm and £3.95 between 10pm and 6am will remain, but it will cost more due to the yardage change – with 20p added on to the fare for each additional 150 yards travelled.


Again, a bit misleading, by the looks of it. The last section makes it sound like that's some sort of increase, but 20p/150yards is simply the current yardage, which won't be changing, if I'm reading this correctly. The yardage change is simply the 100 yards reduction in the flagfall.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2019 8:56 pm 
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Quote:
The proposed increase, which is expected to be rubber-stamped by the region’s regulation and licensing committee on Tuesday, would see the initial yardage reduced from 1,000 yards to 900 yards for both stages one and two – effectively 24 hours a day.

That is still a huge initial yardage. :shock:

Ours is 293 yards.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2019 11:57 pm 
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Sussex wrote:
Quote:
The proposed increase, which is expected to be rubber-stamped by the region’s regulation and licensing committee on Tuesday, would see the initial yardage reduced from 1,000 yards to 900 yards for both stages one and two – effectively 24 hours a day.

That is still a huge initial yardage. :shock:

Ours is 293 yards.


Ours was one mile when I started here :shock:

Then the whole thing was restructured, and I think it was reduced to about half a mile.

Then one year they stuck a huge dollop on the flagfall fare, but increased the flagfall distance to compensate, and I think it ended up nearer a mile again :?

Since then, rather than increase the flagfall fare they've reduced the distance several times now, so the proposed change will bring it down to about half a mile again :roll:

Another aspect of that is when they did increase the flag fare a few years ago, T2 should have gone up to £4.00 to be consistent with the T1 increase. But they left it at £3.95, presumably because they thought it looked better that way :-s

So rather than the 20p increments, it was back to the 5p pieces :evil:

And while in the summer I could go weeks without needing a 5p piece, with the students back it's a different kettle of fish entirely ](*,)

In fact I'd prefer just to get rid of the 5p pieces rather than what's actually proposed :-|


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:58 am 
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StuartW wrote:
Quote:
In a letter to committee, Sam Green and Peter Meldrum from Magnum Taxis stressed operating taxis is not all about fuel costs, pointing out that wages accounted for around 70% of outgoings.

“This may not be the same for the single owner/driver businesses but for us and many fleet owners it’s the ever increasing motor insurance costs, motor maintenance costs, council licensing costs, but the biggest increase to our businesses are the staff wages,” the letter said.


Can't be bothered looking back, but sounds like that's *exactly* the same letter as they submitted a couple of years ago :badgrin:

I mean, they make it sound like single owner/drivers like me don't have to worry about insurance, maintenance, licence fees, blah, blah ](*,)


This is what they said a couple of years ago:

Magnum Taxis wrote:
I will reiterate that operating taxis is not all about fuel! It may be for the single owner/driver but for myself and many other fleet owners it's also about the ever increasing motor insurance costs, motor maintenance costs, council licensing costs, and the biggest increased cost to our businesses is the drivers' wages.

:-s


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:58 pm 
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In other words fuel isn't important to us in our ivory towers, only to the mugs who actually do the f***ing job.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:13 pm 
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Sussex wrote:
Quote:
The proposed increase, which is expected to be rubber-stamped by the region’s regulation and licensing committee on Tuesday, would see the initial yardage reduced from 1,000 yards to 900 yards for both stages one and two – effectively 24 hours a day.

That is still a huge initial yardage. :shock:

Ours is 293 yards.



ours is ZERO [-(

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:58 pm 
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Quote:
ours is ZERO [-(

So people get in on the flag, and the meter clicks over when you move a yard?

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2019 8:39 pm 
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The Courier wrote:
The proposed changes would put the average two-mile journey during the day up by 10p to £6.70, while the night-time rate would rise by 15p to £8.35 for a two-mile jaunt.


Apart from everything else, just noticed that *both* these figures seem to be wrong - didn't actually consider the fine details when I looked first time round.

But the T1 flag is £3.20, and the increments are 20p, so the new two-mile run can't be £6.70.

Likewise, the T2 increments are 20p, so if the only change is in the flagfall distance then a fare can't rise by 15p - it either stays the same, or increases by 20p/40p, or whatever.

Unless, of course, I'm missing something that isn't in the article here. Had a look on the council's website at the weekend, and the committee section was down at that time, and can't be bothered looking it up again.

And as a single owner/driver whose only concern is the price of fuel then obviously I'm out of the loop as regards the whole process [-(


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2019 10:20 pm 
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Well looks like it's been rubber-stamped, as predicted in the news report above.

This is from another source, and I've missed out the rehashed stuff.


Taxi fares increase makes Fife second highest in Scotland

https://www.fifetoday.co.uk/news/traffi ... -1-5001465

Taxi firms and associations across Fife supported the increase.

The Glenrothes association said: “After not receiving a raise last year, we would therefore like a small raise this year. The target is to stay in line with inflation and increased costs.”

Councillor Mick Green proposed that the taxi fares should be increased after, “taxi operators met and worked out themselves the best move”.

Councillor Carol Lindsay, committee convener , said: “Every one of us knows what the economic climate is like – but equally, standards in Fife for maintaining taxis is high. It’s difficult to get the right balance.”

Councillor John Docherty added: “It’s a fair report and they all seemed to have come together and support it.”

All councillors agreed to support the rise.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2019 11:20 pm 
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Quote:
Councillor Mick Green proposed that the taxi fares should be increased after, “taxi operators met and worked out themselves the best move”.

Councillor John Docherty added: “It’s a fair report and they all seemed to have come together and support it.”


Not really sure if that's the way it's supposed to work - the trade being in agreement about fares and 'coming together' shouldn't really be a good reason for councillors to simply rubber-stamp it.

Quote:
Taxi firms and associations across Fife supported the increase.


And, in any case, this simply seems to be the council getting together with the handful of usual suspects, and I doubt if the rise that's been rubber-stamped was actually proposed by any more than *one* of the parties.

And the vast majority of the trade are out of the loop at this stage. There are probably more than 100 plateholders and dozens of firms in the East Zone alone, and if last time is anything to go by then only *one* smallish local firm will have had any input into the process.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:17 am 
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Fife Council wrote:
Ellis Taxis, Kirkcaldy - A fare increase would be welcome to offset the increase in fuel costs. However, accepted that there may be no increase given the impact of closures in the Town Centre in Kirkcaldy.

Glenrothes Private Hire and Taxi Association - Proposed that the initial yardage be reduced from 1000 yards to 850 yards.

Gibb Taxis Ltd. - Proposed that the initial yardage be reduced from 1000 yards to 900 yards.

Magnum Taxis - Proposed that the initial yardage be reduced to give operators a 10% increase in fares.

William Watson for and on behalf of Glenrothes Taxi Association - Proposed that the initial yardage be reduced from 1000 yards to 900 yards.


As I thought, it's the same five participants as last time round, as far as I can tell - I'm assuming the Glenrothes Taxi Association is not the same as the Glenrothes Private Hire and Taxi Association, although sounds a bit People's Front of Judea/Judean People's Front to me :-o

And if you're wondering why I don't know, it's because Glenrothes might as well be a million miles away.

Think I've been in Glenrothes once in the past few months, and the other two biggish towns in Fife (Kirkcaldy and Dunfermline) I haven't been in for a couple of years at least :shock:

But to that extent it's funny that two of them have come up with precisely the same proposal, and another one is identical apart from a 50 yard difference in the proposed flagfall change. What are the chances of that, other than some kind of collusion? Maybe that's what the councillors were getting at when talking about operators 'coming together', although there's no evidence of that in the official papers, as far as I can see.

The only local participant as far as the East Fife zone is concerned is Gibbs Taxis, and I'm not even sure what that is, precisely - it's certainly not a name you'll see on the ranks on a roofsign, or whatever. My understanding was that they did mainly school runs, so why they'd be particularly interested in reducing the flagfall by 100 yards is anyone's guess.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:24 am 
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Anyway, the increase works out at around 13p per trip on T1, irrespective of distance travelled. And that's assuming the trip even gets to the 900 yard flagfall.

So anyone have any views on an increase like that? Personally I would have just kept things as they are, and all the rigmarole entailed in implementing a 13p per trip increase just doesn't seem worth bothering about.

As I said, I'd *much* prefer get rid of the 5p increments, but obviously those in the loop would prefer to keep the T2 flagfall at £3.95 instead of breaching the £4 barrier.

But if that's such an issue I'd have preffered to drop it to £3.80 and reduce the flagfall distance by a good bit to compensate =D>


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:11 am 
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More sensationalism - headline makes the trade sound like Scrooge, then the article states that the T1 rise is 10p, and T2 15p, irrespective of distance :roll:

(I make it around 13p and 17p respectively, but either way it's a tiny increase even on a short hop, and on a longer run it's obviously barely worth mentioning.)


Fife taxi and private hire fares to be hiked before Christmas

https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/lo ... christmas/

Image
Image: DC Thomson

Taxis fares in Fife are to go up three weeks before Christmas.

As revealed by The Courier earlier this week, members of the region’s regulation and licensing committee have agreed to a new pricing structure that will see the initial charged yardage reduced from 1,000 to 900 yards for stage one (from 6am to 10pm) and stage two (from 10pm to 6am).

The average two-mile journey during the day will go up by 10p to £6.70 from December 2. The night-time and early hours rate will rise by around 15p to £8.35 over the same distance.

Councillors heard how a number of local taxi and private hire operators had called for an increase this year after fares remained the same in 2018. They suggested increased costs and falling trade had left the sector in a “perilous” state.

With the starting flag rate remaining at £3.20, albeit for 900 yards instead of 1,000 yards, operators argued the rise was fair and would not hugely impact on the public.

Committee convener Councillor Carol Lindsay backed the recommendations made to councillors, although members noted Fife’s taxi fares are currently second highest in Scotland, with only East Lothian’s £7 average higher for a stage one, two-mile journey.

She said: “With regards to any taxi fare scale review, every single one of us knows the economic climate that we sit in at present, but equally we also know the standards we’re driving through Fife – it’s sometimes very difficult to get the balance correct.”

The committee had earlier heard from Donald Jenks, civic government licensing enforcement officer with Fife Council, who revealed regular checks at taxi ranks and discussions with operators had taken place across the region to assess levels of demand.

That, he said, showed there had been no change to the level of demand for taxi services in Fife, and in fact suggested there had been an increase in the number of complaints about taxis “over-ranking”.

“I don’t think I’ve ever heard taxi drivers say they had been rushed off their feet,” he said.

“One indication of that is that you tend to find taxis queuing for customers rather than customers queuing for taxis these days.

“We have had an increase in the number of complaints about over-ranking, where taxis are queuing off the back of ranks.

“The taxi operators may say there’s not enough rank space, but another view might be that they are trying to gain the same business at the same time.”


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:16 am 
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A few days ago The Courier wrote:
The proposed changes, which are likely to come into effect in December, would mean the current flag fares of £3.20 between 6am and 10pm and £3.95 between 10pm and 6am will remain, but it will cost more due to the yardage change – with 20p added on to the fare for each additional 150 yards travelled.


So the running rate is 20p per 150 yards.

Thus if flagfall brought forward 100 yards then the average increase will be two thirds of an increment, thus two thirds of 20p, which is 13.33p?

T2 is 25% higher, thus 16.67p.

So where the 10p and 15p figures come from I'm not sure :-s


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