The rapid growth of Transportation Network Companies in Tanzania

A recent trend has been taking the market by storm and that is “Transportation Network Companies”. Actually, these companies have been around for more than 8 to 9 years ago but have made more impact in the recent years, this is because recently people have come to know who they are and how affordable their services are compared to the normal way of means of transportation. Transportation Network Companies are organisations who simply use mobile apps to enable customers to secure individual rides from drivers who use their own or companies vehicles, both the driver and customer use GPS capability in their smartphones in which the driver can see the pick-up location of the customer and the customer can also be informed in real time where the driver is and show the estimated time the driver will arrive. In our country, we know these companies as Uber, Bolt, Ping, Quitax, Rova Rides and many more. In the past, if you want to go out, you either had to call a taxi driver you are familiar with an hour or 30 minutes in advance because they may be far or stand on the side of the road to catch one and once you get a taxi the prices to where your destination your going is higher compared to what we pay now when we book a ride. Prices were higher because taxi drivers in the past knew they had no competition and they were your only option to take to reach your destination. Companies like Uber have simplified how we move around from one place to another by just booking a ride on our smartphones. Customers can see who will be their driver, the estimated price from where they are to where they are going, call or text the driver to get more info or give info about the destination and even the type of vehicle coming to pick you up, these types of features where not there in the past and made it difficult for customers who used traditional taxi. But with good features, affordable prices and many more, we should remember nothing is perfect, with positive reviews, negative reviews must be there as well. Recently there have been so many complaints from customers and drivers about the services they are receiving. Customers complain most drivers are rude, the type of vehicle that was displayed to them is not the one that comes to pick them up, the fare they pay triples to the estimated price they saw before booking, drivers being unavailable when called by them and others even cancelling trips without giving them a heads up and many more. Drivers also voiced out their complaints like customers taking too long after they arrive at the pick-up location, some customers being rude, customers changing destinations while on route, the price estimated to be low compared to how far the destination there going is and many more. Traditional taxi’s are still in use but are fewer compared to how they were in the past, some drivers have started using apps that enable them to be drivers of these companies. Transportation Network Companies have brought so much impact to our way of living despite some backlash they are getting, we can all agree that they have made transportation services cheaper, affordable and convenient.