NYC cab fares could rise 23% under the new proposal

The cost of riding a New York cab would rise 22.9% as part of a new city proposal for the first increase in yellow cab fares in over a decade, city officials said.

Prices for a ride in a yellow or green cab have been flat since September 2012, the year after Uber entered the New York market and dramatically transformed the rental car industry, the Taxi and Limousine Commission said in proposals released last week .

City bean counters estimate the proposed fare increase will increase driver revenue by 33% based on 2019 passenger traffic and medallion revenue by 29.5%, the TLC said.

“It’s long overdue,” said former TLC chairman Matt Daus, who served under Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg. “It’s probably the longest we’ve seen it that I can remember, but we’ve also had a pandemic. Now that we’re getting out of it, I think it’s a good idea.”

Taxi fare hike in New York City
A proposal to increase yellow cab fares would include a new surcharge for cab rides to and from LaGuardia Airport. It would also increase existing surcharges.
Getty Images

The proposed increase actually includes several increases, officials said, beginning with increasing the base fare from $2.50 to $3. Officials will also introduce a new $5 surcharge for cab rides to and from LaGuardia Airport, according to the proposal.

Other changes are:

  • Increase in all-inclusive fare to Kennedy Airport from $52 to $65.
  • Rising rush hour and night surcharges.
  • Newark Airport surcharge increases from $17.50 to $20.
  • Increased the “Taxi Enhancement Surcharge” from $0.30 to $1.

The meter increase “will help address the challenges of the evolving taxi and road hail livery sectors and their need for revitalization by putting more money in drivers’ pockets,” TLC officials wrote in their rule change proposal, published on the City website published.

Proposed increase in Yellow Cab counter
In a 2014 photo, New York City cabs pass Times Square. One proposal would increase base rates from $2.50 to $3.

Asked about the prospect of a big increase to get New Yorkers already struggling with inflation through the city, Daus said meter increases usually affect the number of drivers for hire, but that demand will eventually return .

“Every time we make a fare increase, there will always be a drop in passengers. It’s usually temporary. The biggest problem is how long it takes,” he said. “People shell out and it goes back to normal.”

A separate proposal would increase hourly wages for Uber and other app-based drivers.

A passenger gets into a taxi in 2020. Passengers could be hit by the first increase in meter tariffs in ten years.

“We fought for that. We’ve been in discussions with the TLC about this for the past few months,” said New York Taxi Workers Alliance executive director Bhairavi Desai.

The increases put NYTWA members “just inches” from their $25-an-hour goal, Desai said.

The fare increase comes as MTA officials consider charging taxi and rental vehicle passengers congestion fees ranging from $9 to $23.

TLC commissioners will hold a hearing on the proposed rate hikes on October 6th. NYC cab fares could rise 23% under the new proposal


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