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Satnav and app usage by taxi drivers: Complementing knowledge, not replacing it

Updated: Aug 20, 2023



As technology continues to evolve, it is becoming increasingly common to see taxi drivers using satellite navigation systems (satnavs) or mapping platforms such as Google Maps and Waze to assist in their navigation.


This may raise some concerns amongst passengers who wonder if this reliance on technology indicates a lack of expertise or local knowledge. However, it is important to understand that these tools are utilised by taxi drivers to compliment their existing skills and provide the best service possible.

Taxi drivers undergo rigorous training, which includes in-depth topographical tests, to obtain the necessary knowledge and expertise to navigate the regions they serve. These tests often cover various routes, landmarks, street names, and points of interest. This knowledge allows them to efficiently transport passengers and respond to their specific needs.


While satnavs and other mapping platforms provide real-time updates on traffic conditions, alternative routes, and estimated arrival times, they are viewed as complementary tools rather than a complete substitute for a taxi driver's acquired knowledge. The combination of a taxi driver's expertise and the assistance of technology helps to ensure an optimal and efficient journey for passengers.

Using a satnav to check live traffic updates does not diminish the professionalism or competence of a taxi driver. Instead, it highlights their dedication to providing the best possible service using every available resource. Satnavs can also be particularly useful when navigating unfamiliar areas outside of their licensed area of expertise.


In a rapidly evolving world, technology continues to assist and improve various aspects of our lives, including transportation. Therefore, if you see a taxi driver using a satnav, there is no need for alarm. On the contrary, it demonstrates their commitment to look for live traffic problems merging the best tools available, the cabbie's brain and tech, to offer a gold standard service to passengers.

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