It’s been reported that there are more than 12,000 taxis in Dublin and this competitive market has seen demand for services fall by 33.4% between 2008 and 2011 as potential customers look for less expensive ways to get around town like the excellent bus and train service. If you’re anywhere in Dublin’s City Centre you’ll usually see a line of Taxi’s at your disposal but if you’re out late at say a local restaurant that’s off the beaten path then you’ll likely find it difficult to find a taxi when you need them.
But now Hailo, a taxi app service, is stepping in to help Dublin taxi drivers to get bookings and minimize cash handling on the job. “Our service matches passengers to their taxi and ensures that the fare is paid, so eliminates any potential risks for both the driver and the passenger,” said Colm Ó Cuilleanáin, managing director of Hailo.
Founded by three London cab drivers, Hailo completed a $17m Series A financing round in March, and this investment is being used to fund the firm’s expansion into Ireland and North America.
Hailo not only lets customers book a taxi via the app, but it also allows them to pay by credit or debit card using their smartphones, emailing a receipt directly to them. Cashless transactions mean drivers don’t have to handle money, and payment is always what’s on the meter, which will help eliminate fare disagreements.
How It Works
From your starting point in the Taxi on the Hailo app, the timer begins, then you simply tap ‘Take Payment’ at your destination and you’re given the option to take Cash or Credit Card payment. If you select Credit Card, it’s then a straight-forward process of entering the fare total, adding a tip, entering the card details and then tapping submit. At the end of the process you can also provide your passenger with an electronic receipt via email or SMS.
All journeys booked via Hailo are recorded for safety and security reasons. Once a customer books a taxi, the driver’s photo and roof sign are displayed, as well as a call button to contact the driver directly. A real-time countdown indicates when the cab will get there and a notification is sent on arrival.
Hailo also provides additional services for drivers through the Hailo Driver Network, which gives drivers real-time alerts on job bursts and traffic information, and private statistics measuring a driver’s earnings and down-time. Drivers can also chat with each other on the network and manage their recorded fares.
Hailo is free to download and for drivers to subscribe to the network, and it is available through the App Store and Google Play for iOS and Android devices.