Ridesharing Services Impact Local Transportation Companies
EDINBURG – Uber is having an impact on traditional Rio Grande Valley cab services since its launch here in late June.
Phil DeSimone calls his cab and private car service Philly's Cab Company. He's from Philadelphia and said service sets him apart.
DeSimone said he used to dispatch a fleet of five cars with his cab service. He's had to cut down to one other driver.
“Pre-Uber was phenomenal. The calls kept coming in, people are happy. The five star reviews, I couldn’t respond fast enough to each and every one of them,” DeSimone said. “For the first week the phone did not ring for a period of six days.”
Just a few miles from DeSimone’s operation in Edinburg, Maggie has a different outlook on ride sharing.
“I like driving. I’ll just take off and drive,” Maggie Sanchez said. She’s an Uber driver and a mother of a young child. “I was like oh you make your own hours, flexibility and so far it's been working out."
Uber would not tell us how many drivers they have in the Valley.
“We have seen a lot of success in RGV and we look forward to continuing to grow and provide more economic opportunity and access to safe, affordable transportation options,” said Uber Communications Manager Travis Considine.
Maggie says wait times are low and customers are responding to ride sharing in a big way.
“They are happy that it came down here, especially at night they are like ‘Might as well spend a few dollars extra to stay safe,” Sanchez said.
Meanwhile, DeSimone will keep on clocking miles as ridesharing is here to stay.
“Just driving around on a Saturday night hoping. Anybody need to get home safe? We’re available,” DeSimone said.