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Our problem is that we have too many relaxed taxi drivers so that the commuters are finding it a problem to get taxi especially in rush and odd hours. We cannot say they are lazy. The new term is work life balance . The truth is that Singapore has more taxis than Hong Kong , more taxis per capita than New York but the shortage of taxis seems to be more severe here.
Of course we know the true reason -- our taxis usually run one shift. When it is raining, taxis rest at coffee shops. This is perfectly OK as this is their freedom of choice and taxi companies have not much to say since they are only collecting rent for their investment. However it means that a lot of our taxis are actually working part time.
Thus a simple solution is to let more people work part time. My suggestion is that anyone with a reasonably good car can apply to be a Part Time Taxi (PTT). Of course the drivers must have a valid taxi driving licence. The saloon must be equipped with taxi meter, reasonably clean, a GPS, thus no question of not knowing the place, a portable taxi light box that can be attached to the car top.
We can even have different fare grades for PTT. If your car is Mercedes or BMW then you are entitled as PTT A with fees as normal taxi fare. If you are ordinary Toyota for instance then it is grade B which is cheaper. If you are a small car then you are grade C which is further cheaper and can only take 3 passengers.
Now our PTT drivers shall go out after dinner when long queues are at shopping centres to pick up aunties with shopping bags. During Chinese New Year when normal taxis are taking their families to visit relatives our PTT can go out to help tourist stranded at Casino.
PTT may even boost our marriage rate in Singapore. What other way is better than going out at night time to rescue young girls left waiting in front of night clubs after eleven when most normal taxi will not go because they only appear after twelve? These PTT drivers are not retired uncles. They may be young executives, professionals who just like to come out to earn a little pocket money and meantime provide service to the public.
Since they are part time drivers PTT can choose customer and refuse to go to unfavourable destinations like normal taxis
PTT is our way to go.
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