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SATURATED MARKET: Cornwall taxi drivers vent concern as cabbies see demand drop but licencees rise

Taxi operators in Cornwall are raising concerns over new licensing regulations that they claim have led to a glut of cabs on the county's roads.

The local authorities in the area opened up the number of taxi licences, which saw the number of cabs jump from 54 to 97 in Newquay. National licensing criteria released earlier this year requires all taxis in Cornwall to adhere to a set of minimum standards in order to operate in the region. However, many of the taxi operators in the county have complained that these new regulations are causing a significant oversupply of taxis, which is making it increasingly difficult for everyone in the industry to make a living.

According to a report in the Bude & Stratton Post, many taxi firms in the region are now finding that there simply isn’t enough demand to go around. One operator remarked that it can be difficult to generate enough custom to cover the costs of running their cab.

The situation has prompted calls for the licensing authority to reassess the new licensing criteria and to consider reducing or capping the number of drivers who are permitted to operate in the region. However, the authority has so far said that there are no plans to make any changes to the regulations, arguing that the licensing process is designed to ensure that all operators are providing quality services that meet the needs of passengers.

In response to the oversupply, some taxi firms are now resorting to working longer hours in order to stay in business, while others are considering merging with other operators in order to remain competitive.

How does over saturation in driver numbers affect the taxi industry long-term?

An over-saturated taxi market can have several negative effects. In addition to making it harder for drivers to make a living, it can also lead to increased competition and reduced fares, which can make it difficult for taxi companies to remain profitable. This can, in turn, lead to a reduction in the quality and availability of service, as taxi companies may cut corners to save costs.

Additionally, as drivers begin to leave the industry, it can become increasingly difficult to recruit new drivers, which can exacerbate the problem. Ultimately, an over-saturated taxi market can be detrimental to both drivers and customers, and it's important for stakeholders to work together to find solutions that can help to address the issue.


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