Taxi fares are set to increase across Pembrokeshire as drivers aim to keep on the road in the face of rising fuel costs.
Members of the county council’s licensing committee heard from taxi drivers at a meeting on Tuesday (August 9), who explained why they would like to see an increase to the fares it is possible to charge for journeys.
Drivers and taxi operators had also be canvassed on their views prior to the meeting where the sole purpose was to consider a Hackney Carriage fare review.
A report to licensing committee states: “Due to the significant increase in running costs for businesses and as fuel prices were rising rapidly, the Licensing Team received several requests from Hackney Carriage Proprietors and Licensed Drivers to amend the Maximum Table of Fares set by this Authority and submitted a proposed Maximum Table of Fares to the Licensing Team.”
Increases of across all rates are suggested and daytime rates to end at 6pm and weekend rates to start at 6pm, instead of 10pm, along with a rise in waiting time charges to 42p a minute, while other charges such as booking fees, pets and fouling of vehicle to remain the same.
The cheapest journeys will rise to £4 for the first mile and £34 for a ten mile trip, while the most expensive rates are set to start at £8 up to £63.80, depending on what rate journey is being taken.
Councillors asked questions about the changes to waiting time charges, the weekend rate times, and whether the rises would cover any future increases, along with concerns about “striking a balance” between affordability for drivers and passengers.
Driver Kate Telford said she, and other taxi operators, spoke with passengers and “in the main” there was support for price rises, with many “saying we can’t understand why the fares have not gone up yet.”
She added that some will accept change back to help cover costs and keep taxis on the road.
The maximum price rises were unanimously approved by licensing committee and will now be subject to a public notice and 14-day consultation period before any changes are made.
If there are no objections received the new fare table will commence the day after the consultation ends.