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10/12/2014 The Land Transport Department yesterday ordered the US-based Uber ride sharing service operator to stop services after a meeting with three ride sharing operators.
Uber agreed to cease operations of its services using black coloured registration plate or private cars.
LTD director-general of Teerapong Rodprasert revealed after a meeting with Uber representatives.
Under the agreement reached, Uber will halt its service using private cars in Bangkok and Phuket.
He said there are three ride sharing service operators in Thailand, US-based Uber, Grab Taxi of Singapore, and Easy Taxi of Brazil
Easy Taxi and Grab Taxi use commercially registered vehicles. Only Uber which uses privately registered cars.
If Uber wants to continue to operate those vehicles, it must have to comply with the laws.
Since ride sharing service is booked through mobile application and paid with credit cards, Mr Teerapong questioned the safety of customers and would ask the Information and Communication Technology Ministry to check its security.
Uber is the sole operator that provides ride sharing service using private cars, while two other operators have a mix of both private and commercially registered vehicles.
Easy Taxi and Grab Taxi have agreed to stop operating black registration plate vehicles but will remain running their commercially registered fleet of vehicles.
Uber agreed to terminate its services but is looking into turning their fleet of vehicles into providing sightseeing services which will nevertheless need to be registered with green registration plates with the LTD, Mr Teerapong said.
In a statement issued after the meeting, Uber spokeswoman Karus Arya said Uber respected the LTD and its important role as the key regulator on vehicle-for-hire transport in Thailand.
But she said he company would look forward to continued conversations with the DLT to bring innovative transportation solutions within the appropriate regulatory framework in Thailand.
As for the services it provides, Uber has two types of taxis for customers to choose from.
The first is called Uber X and employs small sedans such as Toyota Vios or Honda City that charge 25 baht base fare and 4 baht 50 satang for every consecutive kilometre which comparatively, is cheaper than regular taxis.
Uber X, however, requires a minimum fare of 45 baht.
The other service is called Uber Black which runs medium to large size sedans such as Toyota Camry or Nissan Teana which charges a base fare of 45 baht and 9 baht 20 satang for every kilometre after that.
A minimum fare of 75 baht is the prerequisite.
The unique feature of ‘Uber’ taxi services is that it provides detailed information on the taxi driver, the vehicle as well as its current location in relation to the customers’ through the Smartphone application which is extremely convenient for users.
Uber launched its service in Thailand earlier in the first quarter, and then started up ride-sharing on the popular resort island of Phuket in November. But in Phuket, Uber said all its vehicles providing services are commercially registered vehicles. thaips