The verdict is out: a recent survey found that 53 per cent of Singaporeans want third-party taxi booking/car-sharing apps like Uber and GrabTaxi to be legislated. This survey, which included 1,929 participants, took place from October 8 – 11 — not long after new Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan mentioned in his October 2 blogpost that his team would be reviewing private car-sharing apps after hearing his share of complaints from taxi drivers.
Conducted by market research firm YouGov, the survey results also revealed that 22 per cent of participants did not want any Government intervention in the apps, while 11 per cent of them felt strongly and want these apps to be banned from the market. The remaining 14 per cent said that they didn’t have an opinion on it or do not know.
Third-party apps have proven to be popular here in Singapore — they’re the second-most common way (42%) in which people engage cabs. 73 per cent of us still go for the classic flagging down on the street method. From the survey, the top three reasons people cite to explain their preference for third-party apps are: how easy they are to use, the feature that shows the availability of drivers in the area, and how much easier it is to get a ride using apps compared to other ways.
The habits of people who use taxi-booking/private car apps are also reflected in the survey. For example, 33 per cent prefer taking taxis to private cars, 29 per cent just go for whichever is the cheaper option, and 23 per cent will settle for whatever is available first. A more discerning 15 per cent pick private cars over taxis, because they are generally slightly less expensive, private car drivers tend to offer better customer service, and they tend to be more widely available.
Looks like we have quite an opinionated bunch here (except for that 14 per cent). Well then, the people have spoken, and I guess it’s getting down to work for Khaw and his team now. Go forth and godspeed.