The entry into force of the Act on Transport Services in one month, on 1 July 2018, will introduce changes to the daily lives of taxi travellers. The biggest change is caused by the freeing of the pricing of taxi services. The Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) and the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (KKV) have compiled all the changes on their websites. Users can also watch animations to learn about the changes.
Starting from July, the price of a taxi ride may vary based on issues such as time of day, taxi company, booking method and requested additional services. It is essential that clients know how much the ride will cost or on which grounds the price will be determined when entering a taxi.
As a result of the new act, the current quota-based licensing system will also be abolished. Vehicles other than passenger cars can also serve as taxis. The obligation concerning waiting places will also be eliminated. As a result, it is advisable to book a taxi in advance, particularly during quiet times and outside of cities.
However, basic elements will not change, and using a taxi will continue to be easy and reliable in the future. Companies will still need to have traffic licences and ensure the sufficient competence of their drivers, e.g. in customer service situations. Taxi drivers must still pass a taxi driver's examination, and their health and right to drive information and criminal background is checked.
"The new act brings many opportunities to developing taxi operations, which will hopefully benefit both clients and entrepreneurs. We will monitor the changes introduced by the legal amendment also to pricing and will cooperate closely with the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority, among others", says Director General of Road Transport Marko Sillanpää of Trafi.
"The reform will affect every consumer who uses taxi services. The change requires new capability of taxi passengers to compare prices and services. KKV is engaged in dialogue with the taxi industry and supports the implementation of the reform in a way that also strengthens the status of consumers in practice", says Consumer Ombudsman Antti Neimala of KKV.
What will the taxi reform bring along and what should people pay attention to? The new animations by Trafi and KKV present the change from many different viewpoints. The first animation is concerned with general changes, while the animations published later will present, in further detail, issues such as determining the price of a taxi ride, the use of a taxi from the viewpoint of persons with mobility and functional limitations as well as what you should do if not everything goes the way you would like during a taxi journey.
The animations will be published on the social media channels of Trafi and KKV.
Finnish Transport Safety Agency:
Marko Sillanpää, Director General, tel. +358 29 5345 210, marko.sillanpaa (at) trafi.fi, on Twitter @MarkoSillanp
Development Manager Mikko Västilä, tel. +358 29 5345 584, mikko.vastila(at)trafi.fi
Senior Inspector Satu Toepfer, tel. +358 29 505 3129, satu.toepfer(at)kkv.fi