New St Albans taxi app to offer service similar to Uber in district
A taxi app that resembles the controversial Uber has launched in the district
‘St Albans Drivr’, a sister company to A1 taxis, was launched recently in response to the demand for an Uber-style service across St Albans and the surrounding areas.
Uber is a smartphone app that offers (mostly) cheaper, ‘cashless’ taxi journeys paid for through a credit or debit card registered on the app, but has met criticism across the globe as ‘unfair competition’.
The global app, which has also been criticised for its profiling of drivers, does not currently operate in St Albans but is available in surrounding areas such as Luton.
Kamran Khan, owner of the St Albans Drivr and A1 taxis, launched the app recently as a localised version of Uber and as an alternative to other private hire booking methods.
He said: “We’re trying to move with the times and say we’re something similar, but we’re checked by your local council.
“St Albans district council have a strict CRB checking system and all of our drivers are local so passengers can be secure in the knowledge their driver is safe, and it’s a lot cheaper.”
Secretary of St Albans and Harpenden taxi association (SAHTA) Mudassar Yasin said that he supported moving with the times but hoped the drivers remained from the area.
He said that Transport for London (TfL) was less vigilant with their licensing than St Albans district council and hoped that TfL licensed drivers would not be subcontracted by the company.
He went on:”If they’re local and they’re licensed by the local council, we don’t have a problem, but if they have drivers coming in from elsewhere then that’s concerning.”
He added: “Every established taxi company in the area has an app, this is just another kind of app, but I understand this is the way forward now. Our main concern is that customers remain protected.”
St Albans Drivr is available to download on iPhone, Android, or Windows devices by searching ‘Drivr’.