Mumbai : Cabbies will soon be asking for tips, even putting up stickers inside the taxi for it, said A L Quadros, leader of Mumbai Taximen’s union. “Earlier, a cabbie used to log at least 150 km per day but now it has come down to half of that, so fare hikes do little for us,” he said by way of justification.
Most of the commuters FPJ spoke to on this issue were opposed to the idea. Nausheen Shaikh, a resident of Byculla, said, “Usually it happens that they do not have the exact change and keep the excess change. Asking for a tip apart from it is not right, they never make an attempt to give exact change back.”
“They cannot have everything according to their whims and fancies. Sometime they will be standing idle but will not take a commuter just because it is a minimum fare. Can the union leader guarantee that the drivers will never refuse fares and give exact change back,” said Nigel Buthello a resident of Wadala.
Cab driver Santosh Mishra said, “Making an appeal to the commuters will not change anything, it will only earn a bad name to us. People who do not want to will not give any then what is the point in going all out to make an attempt. At times the passengers to not pay the excessive as they do not have the change.”
Thane resident Mahalakshmi Iyer said, “These auto and taxi drivers make us go and get the change from the nearby shops. Sometime you are bound to pay what they have to ask for irrespective of the meter indicating far less as you cannot find another one. They do not have the right to ask for a tip as well.”
A resident of Belapur, Akshay Shinde, said, “TIP stands for ‘To Ensure Promptness’ which is a rarity with these auto and cabbies. Asking for it will not make them eligible for having it. Moreover some of these drivers will consider it as their right to keep the change while the commuter may just feel otherwise.”
Mohammad Sayeed Khan, a 60-year-old cab driver at Churchgate, said, “We have commuters who pay us generously. There is no need for an appeal, not everybody will afford to give a tip and those who can do give.”