The taxi industry is urging commuters to brace themselves for fare increases of between R2 and R100 expected to come into effect next month, owing to steep fuel prices.
Taxi rides along all local routes would increase by R2 while long-distance fares are expected to go up by R100 from December 1, taxi associations said.
Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (Cata) spokesperson Andile Seyamo said apart from high petrol prices, a lack of subsidies from the government also adds to the taxi fare increase.
“Commuters will add R100 on the taxi fare they used to pay for a long distance. The increase of the taxi fare is caused by the increase of fuel prices and the taxi industry does not receive subsidies from the government.
“If the taxi industry was subsidised by the government, the taxi fare would not increase as it does today because we would have support in terms of mechanical issues and fuel prices,” said Seyamo.
Congress of Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta) spokesperson Nceba Enge added that the war in the Middle East was also affecting the taxi industry as car parts costs had increased.
“We only increase taxi fares once in a year, and the fuel price increases multiple times in a year. We have increased the taxi fare by R2 local and on routes, e.g. from Khayelitsha to Bellville. Passengers who travel from Khayelitsha to Malmesbury and to Atlantis will pay R10 more.
“Codeta and Cata have both increased long distance by R100. This increase is caused by the fuel hike, and the costs of mechanical parts of a car have also gone up,” said Enge.
Commuter Thuliswa Zukelo said the increase will affect her monthly budget.
“As a taxi commuter, the taxi fare increase will affect me because a taxi trip will be expensive and this will affect our monthly budgets. It seems like the monthly taxi fare will be more than our salaries,” said Zukelo.
Another commuter, Asemahle Benn, said: “It’s affecting us because salaries are not increasing but everything is just increasing left, right and centre.”