For taxi drivers, there was no huge surprises in the budget yesterday except that the already existing plan for the price of fuel to increase still remains.
The price will increase by 3.62p a litre in August where prices for petrol already average 139.67p per litre and diesel is at 146.39p per litre. Although it was announced there will be no further increases many are still unhappy that what has been previously proposed it still going ahead.
Taxi drivers will be hit the hardest as rank rates and firm rates aren’t increasing which means drivers are earning less and less. Most now earn below minimum wage whilst having to work between 70 and 80 hours a week to average just £4 an hour.
Obviously there are other expenses that taxi drivers face and not just that of fuel but parts, servicing and everything else in between is also costing more. There are ways of keeping costs down by choosing the right taxi insurance.
First Choice driver Rob Lowrie who acts as a taxi spokesman in Barrow said, “It is disgusting really. The fuel prices are ridiculous and taxi drivers are really really struggling.”
Mandy Fry who works for a Weymouth taxi firm also commented on the current situation that drivers are facing saying, “The industry money is quiet at the moment anyway, and fuel increases do not necessarily mean a rise in taxi fares, which means drivers can’t stay on par with what they are earning.”
She says that whenever the budget is announced, drivers always expect an increase in road tax and that this year hasn’t been as bad as those previous. This is because the rate is only going up in line with that of inflation which isn’t good news, but it isn’t bad news either.
Drivers haven’t been surprised with the decisions but with increases year on year, the only thing left to wonder is where will it all end up?