The Essential Services Commission is seeking feedback from taxi users and other stakeholders on its draft decision, which proposes no change to the maximum fare that can be charged for ‘unbooked’ taxi services, following a review of fares.
Unbooked services include hailing a vehicle from the street or taking a taxi from a rank, while booked services are arranged through an app, online or over the phone. Fares for booked trips are not regulated by the commission.
The commission’s director of pricing Marcus Crudden says there were a range of views on what taxi prices should be, but that now was not the time for change.
“Given the current environment we believe keeping maximum fares unchanged will provide stability for both passengers and providers,” he said.
Mr Crudden said the commission looked closely at the ongoing changes in consumer demand for taxis, service levels, changes in the cost of providing taxi services and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on consumers and the industry.
“Keeping fares unchanged at this time is ultimately in the interests of Victorians who use unbooked taxis and will allow the industry to remain viable,” he said.
“We have also sought to avoid imposing any changes to the fare structure that would affect price stability or impose administrative costs on providers.”
The commission’s draft decision covers fares for trips that start in metropolitan Melbourne, urban and large regional zones including Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo, Frankston, Dandenong and the Mornington Peninsula.