Taxi fares are set to rise by 12 per cent on average from September 1st after the National Transport Authority (NTA) confirmed the planned increase.
As the Irish Examiner reports, the NTA said it would also be mandatory for all taxis to provide a cashless payment option to customers from the same date.
The NTA said the raising of the maximum fare by a weighted average of 12 per cent was being made to reflect the increasing operating costs faced by taxi drivers combined with the introduction of cashless payment facilities in cabs.
It is the first fare increase since 2018 when the average cost of a taxi journey rose by 4.5 per cent.
The new fare structure will see the standard initial charge increase from €3.80 to €4.20.
The initial charge during premium periods covering 8pm-8am and Sundays and public holidays will go from €4.20 to €4.80.
A survey conducted among taxi drivers in July 2019 showed they earned an average of €28,800 for working 48 weeks of the year.
The NTA said a driver’s income would increase by €3,456 annually as a result of the latest fare increase.
A review of fares conducted in 2019, which has recommended a fare increase to be implemented in 2020, was put on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The NTA said average operating costs for taxi drivers had increased by 11 per cent between 2017 and 2022, while a further 1 per cent fare increase was being provided to cover the cost of facilitating cashless payments.
A review of taxi fares is generally carried out every two years by the NTA, although taxi representative groups are expected to call for further measures before the next scheduled review in 2024 because of the sharp increase in fuel prices in recent weeks.
Although there have been public complaints about the number of taxis for hire, particularly at night-time in Dublin, an NTA report earlier this year said the number of taxis in Ireland at 3.7 per 1,000 population far exceeded most countries in Europe where the average is 1.3 per 1,000 population.
It pointed out that the ratio in Dublin was 7.4 taxis per 1,000 population.