Here we are at the end of another year & what a year it was! Not only did it fly by building the infrastructure for A2B taxis Norwich , gaining a regular customer base & hand picking the finest hackney taxi drivers Norwich has to offer. With everything in place we are predicting a good year ahead despite the poor state of the economy.
Over the past week or so we’ve had a few issues within the taxi community, on Christmas Eve the majority of meters failed to switch on to the tariff 4 fare, we had the same problem New Years Eve last year, not surprising really considering how poorly Norwich city Council performs, they should at least make sure the designated firm they authorize are competent enough to carry out the meter chipping properly , for any driver that worked the Christmas period it would of made them out of pocket by at least £100.
On one positive note the much needed newly opened Just Taxis in Norwich won’t charge for chipping meters providing you are a customer of theirs & anyone who did have their taxi fares meter chipped recently at Just Taxis did have the correct chipping , unlike everyone else! Just taxis is fast becoming the leading taxi repairers for the Norwich area, already recognized by SJB taxi rentals & sales specialists where their modern fleet of cabs are now serviced & repaired. Moral of the story is: If you want it done properly then go to an establishment that knows what they are doing. Call Just taxis on 01603 510928 & SJB taxi rentals on 07770 722039.
It has been brought to the attention of our beloved Norwich City Council by one of the new contractors that were given powers to MOT taxis that there is a issue with passengers sitting in the front seat & does not have the benefit of ADLS on the nearside front door. Basically when you’ve got your foot on the brake the front passenger can still open the door. Everyone must now either pay an expensive bill to have a automatic door locking system fitted or reduce seating capacity from 6 to 5 for TX models & from 7 to 6 for metro cabs at your next MOT. As per usual the council are blaming City care for the cock-up, So does that mean we’ve had an invalid MOT for the last 25 years since they brought in the option of front seat passengers in hackney cabs? Only in Norwich!!
As from 2011 clubbers must pay £1 to get in a taxi on the Tombland taxi rank on Fridays & Saturday nights. What bright spark thought of that? Why don’t these boffins actually ask us the taxi drivers what we think? In my opinion it will never work, I’ve spoken to a few customers who I picked up off the Tombland rank in the past week for their thoughts & none of them will pay a pound or wait on the rank for a cab, but will walk & flag a cab down in the area like everyone used to do in the past! Drivers will now start to pick up at the 1st flag drop instead of ignoring them & continue to the rank. Time is money in our game especially peak times at weekends, it actually costs us money to bypass a flag so them days are numbered as a lot of drivers will ignore the Tombland rank. I wonder what they’ll think of next? Any thoughts ?
Another issue & real annoyance is vehicles illegally parked on taxi ranks especially police cars & vans. There are plenty of places to put the police vehicles without taking up valuable limited taxi rank space. What really amazes me is that in any other large city in England these issues would never happen, other City leaders realise that taxi drivers are a valuable part of the community, someone needs to tell the Norwich lot.
So what about the future for the black cab & taxis in general ? Taxis will always be needed but how things operate will change I’m sure, with online bookings & being able to prepay your taxi via the Internet like we offer will be available from every taxi firm once taxi companies realise the importance of cyber space. What about the black cab taxis vehicles in the future? 30 years from now there will be very few diesel black cabs left on the road & most will be electric, the Lord Mayor of London Boris Johnson has set a target of having electric black cabs on the streets of London by 2020. It will be a weird experience popping in the garage for an electric top up, with the high price of diesel today by the time these cabs will be ready how ever much will it cost to fill up at the pumps in 2020?
In the interim Mr Johnson has said that to begin with starting from 2012 any taxi older than 15 years old will not be not be issued with a license plate , basically to get rid of the dirty crap off the streets & with Norwich usually following in London’s footsteps this is much needed, personally I think it will be a good move & if anything should be reduced even further! Some of the taxis on the streets of Norwich are a disgrace. In my opinion there should be more ‘spot checks’ on taxis in Norwich & especially the cleanliness of the cab, lets face it, its not cheap getting a taxi, so the very least you can do is offer an excellent service & a clean vehicle. So why aren’t there more of these checks? same old story, no money to spend, the council is in debt, big on receiving our yearly fees but giving the trade something back for the extortionate fees we pay? Don’t make me laugh!
Could you imagine in Norwich only getting 2 minutes to ‘set down’ & get your punters out of your taxi or get a fine from the council? Black cab drivers in Westminster suffer this & are not happy, a fare issue, any sort of problem, paying by credit card or even off loading a wheelchair customer? More than 2 minutes & you’re nicked mate! Looks like its not only our council who lives in a bubble.
So here we are, a new year, a fresh start & as always until next time lets be safe out there.
Your taxi news for Norwich commentator.