The Taxi Council of Queensland (TCQ) says a new partnership between Qantas and Uber is just another stunt by the booked hire service operator.
Under the new arrangement, Qantas passengers will earn frequent flyer points for fares to and from select airports, including Brisbane, when they book an Uber car using the Qantas app.
However, in an interview with ABC radio TCQ chief executive officer Blair Davies said it’s nothing new as people have been using apps to book taxis and earn Qantas points since 2015.
“We’re not sure that taxi customers think that chasing Qantas points is all that big a deal,” he said. “We didn’t see any appreciable jump in market share for those taxi apps that added frequent flyer points a few years ago.
“But if it turns out to be a feature that customers like with Uber, certainly the major taxi apps will respond because that’s what competition’s about. The taxi apps won’t be sitting back, if our customers like and want the feature, it won’t be far away.”
Mr Davies said taxi apps have been around since 2009, but there are still plenty of people who prefer to book a cab in the traditional way by calling and talking to a real person.
“There are also a lot of people who just want to hail a taxi they see coming down the street, or walk over to a nearby taxi rank and jump in the cab that’s sitting there ready and waiting to go.
“I think most features people like in an Uber app are generally available in taxi apps these days.
“We’ve made up ground very significantly and in many ways, now lead the competition.