ABOUT THE PROJECT
The City of Calgary is reviewing the Livery Transport Bylaw. ‘Livery’ means a company that provides vehicles-for-hire, to drive passengers from one destination to another, for a fee. The City is responsible for regulating the vehicle-for-hire industry, which includes taxis, limousines and ridesharing companies.
Taxis are vehicles that are easily recognizable as part of a taxi company, usually with company logos and a top light. You can book them by hailing them from a taxi stand or curb, phoning, texting the taxi company, online through a website or an app.
Rideshares are privately owned vehicles with no company markings, so you would not easily recognize them on the street. You can only book a rideshare by using a company app on your phone. The app connects you with a ride. You can also rate the driver and leave your opinion online for other people to read.
Limousines are also easily recognizable vehicles (either stretch limousine or sedans) and are often used for airport passengers and special occasions like a wedding or graduation.
Through the Livery Transport Bylaw The City makes sure that drivers have the right security checks, qualifications and insurance, and that vehicles have regular mechanical inspections. The City regulates these areas so we can ensure high standards of safety and reliability for customers.
In 2016, the Livery Transport Bylaw was revised to allow Transportation Network Companies (also known as ‘ridesharing’ or ‘rideshares’) to operate legally in Calgary.
Now that rideshares have been part of our vehicle-for-hire options for three years, The City is reviewing the bylaw to make sure the regulations are still supporting customers and industry.
Your input, along with an external review and internal expertise, will be used to help inform potential amendments to the bylaw to enhance the vehicle-for-hire experience in Calgary.
The following are factors The City of Calgary believes are important customer considerations for the Livery Transport Bylaw.
The City of Calgary’s Livery Transport Bylaw sets maximum taxi rates when taxis are hailed from the street or through phone dispatch to keep costs within an accessible and consistent range for consumers. However, there is no maximum regulated rate for rideshares or limousines. Taxis, limousines and rideshares can all set their own rates for rides that are booked through an online app. This is called surge pricing, which means that prices can fluctuate up or down based on market demand.
The City ensures the safety of the traveling public by regulating vehicle-for-hire drivers and the vehicles they drive. Among other requirements, taxi, rideshare and limousine drivers all require City-issued driver’s licenses that are renewed annually, annual Calgary Police Service background checks, and annual driver record checks. Vehicles must undergo regular mechanical inspections (the frequencies vary between taxis, rideshares, and limos), and all vehicles-for-hire have age limits to help ensure vehicles on the road operate safely and securely.
Some aspects of the Livery Transport Bylaw are put in place to make vehicles-for-hire more convenient for consumers. This includes things like the ability to hail taxis on the street or find them at a taxi stand, allowing customers a variety of booking and payment options depending on the service, and ensuring that taxis display easily identifiable visual markings.
The City regulates the vehicle-for-hire industry to offer a variety of affordable, accessible, and efficient transportation choices to Calgarians. Rideshares entered the market in 2016, giving consumers a wider range of choices for a safe and secure ride.
Part of The City’s regulatory focus is to ensure that a percentage of the licensed taxi vehicle fleet is set up to deliver reliable transportation for customers who require wheelchair accommodation. We’ve made several moves to enhance wheelchair accessible taxi service in Calgary such as:
- Adding a surcharge to every trip provided by a taxi or rideshare company to fund an Accessible Taxi Incentive Program which improves service quality provided by drivers and owners of wheelchair accessible taxis
- Enabling customers to book a wheelchair accessible taxi through a centralized dispatch service pilot for accessible taxis (to be launched in 2019)
PROVIDE YOUR INPUT
The City believes that affordability, safety, convenience, choice and accessibility are all important customer considerations for the livery transport industry.
Tell us how the regulations for taxis, rideshares and limousines can best serve you.
We are collecting input from customers and industry members. Your feedback will be included in a What we Heard report which will be shared here in January 2020.Your input will be reviewed and used by the The City to help inform potential amendments to the bylaw to enhance the vehicle-for-hire experience in Calgary. Recommended amendments to the bylaw will be shared in Fall 2020 for feedback with the final recommended bylaw being presented to Council in Fall/Winter 2020.