You’ve worked your way through Long Street on a Saturday night, and it’s time to get home. Obviously you won’t drive, so you need to call a taxi. But where exactly are you, and what was that number again for the taxi?
Well now you can launch this amazing web app, from Taxi Rank, and book a cab immediately using your GPS co-ordinates. No, you don’t have to use the GPS option if you do know where you are, but it just makes it so much more effective right?
When I read the story on their webpage, I couldn’t resist trying it out. So I registered for the SMS, that sends you the mobile link on your phone, any phone, and had a go.
The interface is extremely plain and simple, with no confusing options at all. Pick your location (Automatic with the GPS), confirm your number is correct and pick your Cab Company. At the moment only Rikki’s and UniCab is available for choice, but hopefully more companies will join soon.
If you want more options, you can choose the “Detailed order form”. This will allow you to choose where to take you once the cab has picked you up. You can also set the time to collect you, as well as how many people need to be collected. What more do you need? Oh right, how much is this amazing service going to cost you.
While doing my test, I used the app to collect me 23km from Town CBD, and then to take me another 23km to my destination. Rikki’s then quoted me R300 through the app. For the sake of being thorough, I contacted Rikki’s, and asked for the exact same trip, and was quoted R420. Huh? Can it be cheaper to use the application as opposed to calling? Sold!
In my excitement to the price, I selected the amount, thinking that a last confirmation pop up would appear, but apparently the app was made with the intent of as little presses as possible, and my cab was booked. The application confirmed my booking immediately, with all the details. Seconds later I received a confirmation SMS with all the details too. And in less than a minute, my phone rang with a call straight from Rikki’s.
Rather embarrassed, I sheepishly answered, and had to explain what had happened. Luckily the operator was most accommodating, and cancelled the call.
If this had happened at 03:00 in the morning, I would be so impressed with that level of prompt service, no question.
The Taxi Rank booking system can also be used from your PC/Mac to make your booking too, and naturally, is free to use.
At the moment this service is only available in the Cape Town region, but I’m sure that if it catches on like I think it will, the rest of the country will be soon to follow.
If you are out for a long night, do the right thing and call a taxi.
While you’re doing that, Enjoy!