A conversation with Dubai Taxi #RTA
I think that the RTA does a pretty reasonable job with managing Dubai Taxis. There are a couple of flaws in the system though that I think they might need to sort out to make the experience a bit better. My conversation with the customer centre on Thursday is a prime example. I am doing this post so I can explain to RTA on Twitter what I meant when I tweeted "there is a flaw in your system". Quite rightly they wanted more information and this is the best way to get that through to them.
@RTA_Dubai there is a flaw in your system. I need a taxi for 7.15 but it could take 20-40 mins. Taxi calls in 5 and cannot wait. I'm not
— Mita Ray (@mita56) June 5, 2014
So here is the conversation:
Me: Can I book a taxi for 7.15 pm
Dubai Taxi: No ma'am we do not take any advanced bookings from 4pm on Thursday (forget till what time - I think its 10pm)
Me: Oh then what do I do?
Dubai Taxi: to be safe, call 40 mins before you need the cab and you should be fine.
Me: so if I call at 6.30, I should be fine? Yes
Me: I would like a taxi at 7.15pm
Dubai Taxi: We don't do advanced bookings and taxis should take between 20-40 mins to arrive. Do you want me to book one now.
Me: will it be 20 mins or 40 mins? I don't want it to arrive too early.
Dubai Taxi: If you are in (my location) then perhaps safer to book now for 7.15.
Me: Okay then book the taxi.
Dubai Taxi: We will call you when we have a taxi.
5 mins later.
Taxi driver: You ordered a taxi?
Me: Yes but I don't need it now
Taxi: When you need it? We are not allowed to wait for more than 10 mins.
Me: Then cancel it please.
Me: Can I order a taxi please
Dubai Taxi: But you already have an order.
Me: Yes but your taxi called me quite early and I was not ready. I asked him to cancel because he could not wait.
Dubai Taxi: Do you want me to rebook it now?
Me: Yes please.
Taxi: You ordered a taxi?
Taxi: I am waiting downstairs.
You would think that this is the end of the story but wait for it.
Taxi: Your booking is cancelled so I cannot start the meter. Please wait while I call the office.
Taxi to Dubai Taxi centre: Please enable the booking - the passenger is in the taxi but I cannot start the meter
Dubai Taxi: (No idea what they said) but the gist of it was that there was a confusion between the two bookings.
So dear RTA, here is my suggestion. Why not take a limited number of bookings on a first-come, first-serve basis on thursdays, a few per hour which means that at least a few bookings are taken every hour. It saves so much to-ing and fro-ing and makes it smoother for everyone. And the same goes for shift changes at 4pm!