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ABC-7 tests Uber, taxi, ahead of city regulations

to discuss regulation of vehicles for hire in march. taxi drivers and cab companies are up in arms over the ride- sharing services that they say have been siphoning away their business. but many believe uber is a sign of the times — an upgrade to a business model. but when it comes down to it — is one better than the other? new this morning — abc-seven reporter evan folan and i took the services on a test- drive: “it is 8 o’clock on monda morning and this is how it is going to work. i am going to call uber from my phone — and i am going to be calling a taxi from my phone and we are both going to the airport — the same destination, and you’re coming on the ride with us.” i plugged in my destination on the app and within seconds – i had a driver on the way. i called the taxi company and after a couple minutes a cab was on the way. “my uber driver is in route it’s going to take about 6 minutes to get here, what about you? “my cab driver is going to be here in 15 minutes, but she was unsure.” “ok, i guess we are going t have to wait to see what happens.” “so it is 8:22 – we are leaving the station right now we are headed to the el paso airport.” i left with javier – a 1-year veteran uber driver. sot: i have another job, this is just a hobby. javier picks up fares from 6 in the morning to about 1 in the afternoon. making anywhere from $200- $300 a week at 8:35, i was picked up by bacillio torres, whose been driving taxis for ten years. he depends on his job to support his wife and 2 children. “we are just asking that they get the same regulation as us, they can work, just not the way they work now.” torres works 12 hours a day and 6 days a week. he says on a good day he will have about 6 fares. and nets $22,000 to $28,000 after expenses. “i mean they are taking the business away from us!” “it is now about 8:40 – it took us about 18 minutes to get here from the west side – so now we are just going to have to wait to see when evan arrives.” i got to the airport around 8:55 – but i wasn’t done just yet. “what are you waiting for?” “they have to call back to th station to run my card number. he said the first couple of times it was busy – so he had to wait for someone at the front desk to answer and now they are going to run my card. it would have been easier to pay with cash, but i am paying with a card.” i paid close to $30 — and i only paid about $15. our experiment showed us that uber was fast and less expensive than the taxi ride. we understand that this is just one experiment – results may vary. again, city council is set to discuss regulations of vehicles for hire next month.

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