Photo vacant taxis in ComfortDelgro garage from Today

After decades of profiting from taxi drivers through exorbitant rentals, ComfortDelgro today saw it’s taxis business rapidly declining. According to the latest official statistics on the number of taxis in Singapore, there were only 15,472 taxis under the company in July 2017. This is 11.3% lower than the 17,143 taxis it had in April 2016.

To make things worse, the current taxis figures are expected to go lower as vacancy rate hits as much as 20% of the vehicles. According to a ComfortDelgro taxi driver States Times Review spoke to, “thousands” of vacant taxis vehicles are sitting idle in the garage and many of his colleagues are now turning to drive for Uber and Grab.

Last Friday (Sep 15), Grab offered a heavily-discounted rental vehicle for all ComfortDelgro taxis drivers in a business move to slice up the largest taxis operator’s market share. According to the Land Transport Authority, the number of taxis in Singapore have fallen 7% since January 2017 and it is currently the lowest in 7 years.

Despite the falling taxis vehicles numbers, commuters and taxi drivers are celebrating. Commuters see higher supply during peak hour period and also cheaper fares from Grab and Uber vehicles. Private-hire vehicle drivers also see higher income as they pay rental fees as low as 30% that of mainstream taxi companies.