Washington DC taxis losing their colour in fight against Uber

By Jane Cowan

Photo: Washington DC taxi drivers park their colourful cabs on Pennsylvania Avenue.

Mr Price said most of the taxis in Washington were privately owned and drivers are being forced out of business in the current climate.

DC cabs are now being forced to conform to a single colour scheme; a much more corporate-looking red with a grey stripe on the side.

All the changes, including mandated credit card machines and fresh paint jobs, are imposing unaffordable costs on on drivers, according to the 71-year-old war veteran.

Despite the apparent benefits to travellers, Nathan Price, who has been driving cabs in DC for 42 years, does not see the appeal.

A bland new colour scheme for the taxis of Washington DC has removed some of the city’s charm.

He maintains the cabs still deliver the best service, but the standardisation of the colour scheme has left them without an identity.

In the film, DC Cab cannot compete with the glossier services and lower rates of a rival taxi company, not unlike the existential threat posed by Uber.

One of the things that is plainly obvious upon arrival in DC, along with the lack of skyscrapers or buildings taller than the dome of the Capitol, is the kaleidoscope of cabs on the streets.

But increasingly the multi-coloured cars are becoming a thing of the past as part of a drive to modernise the city’s taxi fleet.

The struggles of the cabbies portrayed in the film are not that different from the realities of life for drivers trying to eke out a living behind the wheel today.

Read more here: ABC

    

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