Ride-sharing. It’s here to stay. Consumers love it. Legislators are slowly “legalising” it. It’s the shake-up the dinosaur-like taxi industry has needed for eons.
— Tyson Cottrill (@TysonCottrill) April 13, 2016
The service was activated in the area as of midday today, with UberX fully up-and-running across the region.
“In a regional hub where many areas are underserved by public transport, and many more are only accessible by car or taxi, getting around Newcastle and the Central Coast hasn’t been easy. In fact, for most residents, getting a bus or train isn’t an option, and getting a taxi is simply unaffordable.”
“Now anyone, anywhere can push a button and get a ride in minutes, and as we have seen in 400 cities around the world, this will transform the way Newcastle and the Central Coast moves.”“The introduction of Uber into a regional hub like Newcastle, will have positive effects on many issues the city has been grappling with for years, such as drink-driving; access to work, for those that need it; and reliable access to transport.”“We believe that ridesharing will be a positive for residents and the local economy, contributing to making Newcastle and the Central Coast a more liveable, economically vibrant and better connected place.”
The regular taxi sector, predictably, is having a shitfit over the expansion, with drivers bemoaning the loss of taxi plate value; the staggeringly over-valued plates suffered a big devaluation hit when the NSW State Government introduced regulatory legislation that allows Uber to operate in the state legally, though owners are being offered Government-funded compensation.