By Sam Bridge
Roads & Transport Authority says changes to booking taxis in Dubai have been delayed to January 15 to help customers adjust
Dubai's Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has announced that it has delayed the migration of its taxi booking and dispatch services to Hala, the joint venture between RTA and Careem.
Initially planned to be completed by December 7, the RTA said on Wednesday that it has extended the operation until January 15 to allow customers more time to prepare for the change from the interactive voice response system to the new e-hailing ride using Careem App.
The shifting is driven by the improved quality and the massive uptake of Hala ride since launched in August, the RTA said in a statement.
“Extending the start of the full shifting of the booking centre services to the new system using Careem app technology... aims to prepare clients to the new system and give them ample time to familiarise with the change,” said Ahmed Bahrozyan, CEO of Public Transport Agency, RTA.
Comparing the old and new systems, Bahrozyan said Hala customers will get a booking confirmation in about 10 seconds compared to 2-3 minutes under the old system and get a taxi in an average of 3.5 minutes compared to 11 minutes under the previous system, while keeping the fare unchanged.
"Hala offers its customers a smarter way to get around Dubai by knowing their fare upfront along with driver’s details,” he added.
“RTA and Hala teams are working to ensure the delivery of the service to the entire spectrum of Dubai residents. Both teams are keen to ensure a smooth migration of call centre users to the new digital platform on Careem App," he said.
He also revealed that the Hala team is working on a new landline service to cater to the needs of the elderly, some of whom still have limited access to smart services.For all the latest transport news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.