File picture: Kim Hong-Ji / Reuters.
Cape Town - While Uber has increased its minimum fare charge across the country, Uber drivers called for a decrease in the commission the company charges per ride.

As of July 31, the minimum fare charged per UberX ride has increased from R20 to R25.

Uber said: “Even with this small increase, Uber remains one of the most affordable and efficient ways to get around your city. You will still enjoy the reliable service you have come to expect from us.

“As more drivers look to Uber as an earning opportunity, this small increase will still make it possible for riders to access affordable transport while providing profitable earnings for driver-partners.”

However, Uber drivers seemed unaffected by this increase. As it stands, Uber charges a commission of 25%.

Robert Mabokeli, who has been in the business for over three years, said it was getting tougher for drivers to earn a living in the Uber industry.

“It is best to decrease the commission. Petrol is high, maintaining the car is even more costly. If the commission doesn’t go down, I don’t see how we will sustain the business any longer. More and more drivers are leaving daily and those joining are not aware of the difficulty we face,” he said.

Another Uber driver, Riaz Mongratie, supported this call.

“The commission must drop to at least 20%. We understand that the company needs to make an income but it is too much for us,” he said.

Uber spokesperson Samantha Allenberg said drivers chose to drive with Uber for the flexibility and control they were given.

“With the increase in the minimum fare, drivers will receive more earnings on their trips. This will continue to ensure that all trips remain worthwhile for drivers.”

Allenberg said commission fee was the cost of running the Uber app to continually improve it and provide features. 

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Cape Argus