India Uncut

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Monday, August 01, 2005

Bidding for taxis

In a post on Marginal Revolution titled "How to improve taxi markets", Tyler Cowen writes:
Singapore has solved this problem, with a little assistance from satellite technology. Imagine Walrasian taxi markets. The taxi driver receives a satellite message on his little thingie, specifying where the customer wishes to be picked up and where he wishes to go. The cabbie, if interested, then enters a bid for how much he will charge. The customer is matched with the cabbie who enters the lowest bid. [Link in the original.]
Outstanding. Many of you might complain, of course, that people travelling at odd times on strange routes might have trouble getting a cab at an affordable price. But that's a problem that's actually worse now in Indian cities, where rude autorickshaw and taxi drivers simply turn you down if your destination is unacceptable to them. Under the Singapore kind of system, instead of the handful of taxis you can reach by foot declining to take you, you'd have access to every taxi driver in the area, and would get the fairest price possible, instead of no ride at all.

How many decades before we can get cabs like this in Indian cities, I wonder.
amit varma, 12:49 AM| write to me | permalink | homepage

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