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ComfortDelGro cabbies’ earnings take a hit after joining UberFlash | TODAYonline

Still, Mr Kiew, who drives in the day, said the service would be useful for drivers pulling the late shift from 4pm to 11pm because fares are subject to dynamic pricing where fares are higher when demand rises.

His colleagues have seen fares rise between 2 and 2.4 times during the evening periods, or about 10 to 20 per cent above taxi metered fares, he said.

Another ComfortDelGro cabbie, who gave his name only as Mr Sim, said he received a fare of S$7 for a trip from the city fringe to Ang Mo Kio, about half the usual price. “It’s ridiculous to drive more for less… We’re just lowering the whole market price. It’s a price war,” said the 36-year-old.

To entice drivers to use the app, ComfortDelGro is offering a S$5 daily rebate to drivers who have signed up for and logged into the Uber driver app between Jan 29 and Mar 31. From Apr 1, they will need to turn on the app for at least eight hours a day, for a minimum 22 days each month, to qualify for the rebate. Said Mr Sim: “(A S$5 rebate) is kind of lame.”

For the moment, the drivers interviewed by TODAY said they were not planning to continue using UberFlash and would rely on ComfortDelGro’s own booking app instead.

In March last year, rival ride-hailing company Grab launched a similar service called JustGrab with five taxi operators: Trans-Cab, SMRT Taxis, Prime Taxi, Premier Taxis and HDT Singapore Taxi. The service is also subject to dynamic pricing.

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TODAYonline | ComfortDelGro cabbies’ earnings take a hit after joining UberFlash.