MiCab, the Cebu-based tech startup celebrated for its locally-developed and low cost taxi-hailing app for the riding public, welcomes the new guidelines on ride-sharing apps crafted by the Land Transport and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB).
“As more and more Filipinos use app-based services for commuting, the new LTFRB rules can help level the playing field in the industry and ultimately benefit commuters with better and safer app-based car hire services,” said miCab founder Eddie Ybañez.
For Ybañez, LTFRB’s setting of new regulations for online and mobile-based transport services goes a long way in providing more convenience and safety to public commuters.
“The LTFRB’s new rules make the Philippines the first country to establish guidelines in this brave new world of internet and mobile app-based solutions to public transportation. This is indeed a landmark ruling,” he said.
The LTFRB defines private vehicles for hire that use net or mobile apps for booking and dispatching as a “Premium Taxi.”
Under its new rules, premium taxi operators must have at least 20 units in his or her fleet. These vehicles must be brand-new at the time of franchise application, follow the color set by the agency, and have a maximum age of only 7 years.
The LTFRB guidelines further state that premium taxis must be equipped with a GPS vehicle tracking and navigation device and an on-board electric fare payment device that can process transactions via credit card or debit card.
The said regulation moreover requires an operator to have a facility for booking and hailing via net or mobile apps as well as a workshop and depot with a space of at least 15 square meters per vehicle.
Home-grown tech startup MiCab is well-known for the low booking fees of its mobile app cab hailing services with only P10 on top of the regular meter rate.
But MiCab VP of Marketing Kenn Costales said the firm also serves as a cab advertising platform and vehicle-for-hire fleet management software for operators and logistics companies which makes it the only startup that can best help support and promote the new “premium taxi” regulation.
“MiCab’s added advertising and management platforms are what sets us apart from other apps which only offer car sharing and taxi dispatching as their services,” said Costales.
He added that MiCab operates outdoor LED ad signages for partner cabs and uses the 7-inch tablet it provides for use by cab drivers as an indoor ad platform. “Both passengers and passersby are thus shown publicity while the cab is en route to its destination,” he said.
“The miCab advertising platform features a GPS-powered interface and has a reach level of over 100,000 Cebuanos per month for tablets and more than 700,000 for the LEDs,” added Costales.