Uber has been operating on the Czech market for more than five years and has been gradually adding new possibilities to transport people. For example, Uber has launched UberXL for large groups of people in Prague in October and is now introducing yet another new feature. A new category of Uber Taxi has started driving in the capital, which resembles a competing Liftago.
Uber will only offer taxi rides with drivers with a taxi license, and the pick-up prices are set at the same level throughout the day (as opposed to the so-called surge pricing, which varies according to demand) at a maximum of CZK 28 per kilometer.
The possibility to change the final destination and the possibility to stop even during the journey itself should be one of the benefits. This was not possible until now due to the pricing setting when the price is fixed before the journey. With Uber Taxi, the driver will enter the final price at the end, depending on how much the taximeter shows.
Uber thus reports that it complies with local regulations because the prices for such rides are based on taximeters. The US company believes that by opening its platform to additional functions to licensed taxi drivers, it will help modernize the functioning of the Prague taxi market as a whole and that by launching Uber Taxi it will also become more attractive to licensed drivers themselves.
„We want to constantly adjust our offer, in addition to services for taxi drivers and users, to be valuable for all long-term partners in Prague. We want to become a platform offering a reliable, smart alternative for all car use cases, ”said Ash Kebriti, Uber Manager for Central and Eastern Europe.
Liftago is not afraid of competition
It has been building its Czech Liftago platform based exclusively on licensed taxi drivers – betting on the long term – with whom the Uber will try to compete. “Uber Taxi is a service that Uber has been legally operating around the world, for several years already, and it is a pity that they have come out this late, once the Czech law is finally to be modernized,” regarding the newly passed legislation.
However, competitors are not afraid of Liftago. “Uber will continue to be a bigger service than Liftago and I do not expect any significant influence on the competition with Liftago, we will continue to grow. Taxi drivers have been driving with Uber for a long time already and conditions for passengers neither drivers have changed significantly, ”says Krátký, adding that he sees Liftago’s biggest advantage in the choice of a quality driver.
„The majority of Liftago drivers have historically begun on Uber and have left due to unsustainable conditions. A minority of customers preferring the quality and reliability of drivers gradually switched to the choice of driver and car in Liftago, instead of Uber´s ‘Russian Roulette’ and other applications where the customer can not choose the best driver or car,” adds Krátký.