Uber looks set to win the fight to operate legally in New South Wales, but the trade off could be higher prices.
The Daily Telegraph reports that in response to an inquiry into “point to point” transport in NSW, the state government will announce that the low-cost ride sharing service UberX will be legalised as early as next month.
Currently UberX drivers are breaking the law, but the ride sharing service has flourished in spite of this. In the second half of 2014 alone, 11 per cent of Sydneysiders used the service.
Uber said in May that in the year since UberX launched in Sydney, one million trips had been taken.
So what will change?
According to the Daily Telelgraph, Uber will pay a licence fee and taxi owners will receive compensation for losing “exclusive” access to the market.
Taxis will still be the only ones allowed to use ranks and pick up passengers hailing from the street.
Under the reported change, Uber drivers will have to purchase licences, and will not be licensed if they have a criminal record.
There will also be more regular safety checks for vehicles.
UberX in Sydney has a base fare of $2.50 plus 40 cents per minute or $1.45 a kilometre. The minimum fare is $8, and if you cancel your ride, it’s a $10 deduction.