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HAPPY CABBIES: St Albans taxi drivers set for increase in fare tariff to help bear running costs

Image credit: GMB London

St Albans City and District Council met private hire drivers and members of GMB union to successfully discuss increasing taxi fare tariffs earlier this month.

In October drivers requested an overhaul of rates in addition to providing information for airport drop-offs so that these costs are clearer for the public.

The GMB noted that high inflationary running costs for drivers and employers were impacting the ability to cover these costs and make a living. A rise in the fare tariff was the only way to support drivers who may otherwise question their continued provision of this service to the community and tourists says GMB.

Drivers and representatives from the GMB proposed increasing fares to £11.44 for a two-mile journey, which would have been one of the highest rates in the country.

St Albans raised concerns that the proposed tariff could reduce the use of taxis in the city, Harpenden and Redbourn, so instead agreed on their own tariff of a two-mile fare costing £9.08.

Steve Garelick, GMB London Region Organiser, said: “Part of what took us to this point in the first place is that tariffs have to go up in line with the cost of living and fuel costs. Licensing costs and the cost of a disclosure and barring service (DBS) check have all risen. When you start to take these costs into account, drivers have had to start making decisions about how to put food on their tables.

“We have got to reach a standard beyond drivers just keeping their heads above the water.”

Steve added: “I would like to hear from other private hire and taxi driver GMB members in the region who believe that the fare tariff they work with should be reviewed. We cannot have a situation where work earns a driver less than the minimum wage, which is a possibility given the running costs for these workers.”


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