I booked a TADA cab from my house to KKH to accompany my pregnant wife wife (morning 9 am). TADA was 8.5$ as compared to Gojek at 9 and Grab at 12. It said 2 minutes but in between I see driver not moving, I messaged him and finally after a wait of 10 minutes he reached. As we left I suggested we go via Thomson so we don’t have to pay the hefty CTE for a 10 minute ride. He said, “Thomson is too crowded now”. I told him I just came from Thomson and it’s pretty easy. He got offended and said, “U cancel the ride. Get down from my car”. I told him I can’t cancel and he said, “U get down, I will cancel you ride”. My wife was getting anxious so I got down from the ride, 2 minutes after getting in and now we are on a road scouting for another ride. Meanwhile there was no cancellation and after 10 minutes he conveniently finished the ride and pocketed the money. I created a support ticket on TADA and also emailed them. No response.
Am wondering what my options are as this is the first time such an incident has happened in the last decade of living here.
Can I go to any authorities to investigate and complain? Are there any rules the private hire drivers have to follow that were broken? Can I complaint against TADA somewhere because they have taken my money and given no response?
Any feedback from other private hire drivers would be helpful. I don’t want to let this go because the truth is he just kicked a pregnant women out of his cab. And having such a guy on the road doing this to others would be a shame.
Edit 1 – One of the senior TADA people I reached out on LinkedIn replied and promised to investigate and take action. From my end I saw that I got an alert on TADA app that the ride has been cancelled and it has disappeared completely from my history.
Edit 2 – TADA called me today (next day) morning based on the complaint and said they will investigate the incident and try to refund the ride fare quickly. I have also meanwhile sent a complaint to LTA regarding both TADA and the driver. The driver breached at least 3 rules under the PVDL scheme. Here is the link for those interested.
Edit 3 – Since a lot of people are asking, this happened yesterday. And why am I sounding angry and vindictive. Here are my reasons and unless you are in a similar position, you may not be able to empathize- A. The driver asked us to alight from the cab midway. Us includes my pregnant wife and we were on the way to KKH for an appointment. I didn’t even argue, suggested a route and gave a justification. But the driver was already angry. From experience I can say he wanted me to cancel the ride while I was waiting hence he tried to delay coming as much as possible. He could have continued the ride on CTE inspite if my suggestion, but he chose to ask us to get down. He put us at risk of missing appointment, wife getting even more anxious and hence affecting baby and obviously the physical hassle of finding another cab. B. I had just come from Thomson to pick my wife and was sure the road was clear. In fact we took a bus (131) after the driver alighted us and it took us only 15 mins even with stops.
C. The driver didn’t cancel the ride, drive down for another 5-10 mins before marking ride complete and pocketed the money like nothing happened.
D. TADA really let us down as I realised there is no way to flag an emergency or unsafe behaviour like GRAB has. It took them 24 hours to even come back and only after I raised it to the senior execs. Cant imagine what happens to regular complaints.
E. I’ll agree Singapore has spoilt us and we expect a service standard way higher from other countries. But can’t help getting used to this and expecting it. My friends from India called me racist when I mentioned that while incidents like these maybe common in India but very rare in Singapore. In hindsight, I could have mentioned Indonesia, Philippines or any other populated high growth country. Sorry to have hurt their feelings.
F. The driver definitely was angry and did this in anger and is probably sorry now. But having a driver who takes decisions like this based on a customer interaction is a ticking time bomb on the road. Driving is an intensive activity and hence I myself don’t drive to keep myself and others safe. I have complained to the authorities and the platform because he probably does need reformative training. Remember in the Gran and Gojek infancy days when very young drivers were driving very rash. Right now with such a high demand for cabs, the operators will be tempted to lower their bar and recruit drivers to fill the demand. This complaint will probably help drive the message that rules need to be followed.
G. I do care about the 2/3$ ERP I would have paid but that’s not the primary cause of anger. And for those saying I wanted a cheap ride, a 1.5Km ride for 10 minutes is definitely not cheap and compensates the driver well. I’m more than sure he would have had a trip waiting at KK for him when we arrived as well.