Ola Cabs will launch a new smart app tomorrow that will allow users to book ordinary cabs, also called black-and-yellow cabs.
So far, no service provider has been providing the service to book ordinary cabs.
Ordinary, or Kali-Peeli cabs, cost Rs 14 per km in Mumbai, while Ola’s cheapest offering, Ola Mini, costs Rs 15 per km.
In most of Mumbai’s city area, autorickshaws are banned, and pedestrians have to rely on Kali-Peeli to get around. Against Rs 11.50 per km for autos, the cabs charge Rs 2.5/km more.
The emergence of companies like Easy Cabs and Ola Cabs have impacted demand for long distance routes for black-and-yellow cabs in Mumbai.
Black and Yellow cabs, however, are the preferred option for short distance routes.
The Ola tie-up is likely to boost the earnings of black-and-yellow cabies.
Ola and Easy Cabs normally work through a system of affiliated cabbies. Any driver who has a cab can register with these providers. They are given a GPS-enabled phone with a special application that calculates distance, routes and rates.
At the end of the journey, Ola sends an SMS with the actual distance and fare to the customer, who pays the cab driver in cash.
This removes possibilities of overcharging, tampering with meters and ’round-about’ tripping by cabbies. In return, most such providers charge about 10-20% of the fare as service charge.
Another class of companies, such as Tab Cab and Meru, mostly own their own cabs and hire drivers on salary.
It is not clear whether Ola customers can book Black-and-Yellow cabs through the call center.