Taxi firms had a tough time during the UK lockdowns of 2020 and 2021. Now's the time to save on costs, boost efficiency, and ramp up those takings with a vehicle tracking solution…
In recent years, vehicle tracking software has transformed taxi fleet management. Enabling dispatchers and taxi fleet owners to keep tabs on their cabs and manage them effectively, the technology is easy to use, quick to download and cheap to install.
But what exactly is taxi cab tracking, and who are the best taxi tracking software providers? Let's take a closer look.
What is cab tracking?
Using GPS technology, cab tracking systems enable taxi fleet managers to track where their cabs are in real-time. Cab tracking can help drivers get to customers faster, boost fuel efficiency, give in-depth insight with reporting features, and enable drivers to log jobs and receive directions.
Telematics is an advanced feature of taxi cab tracking software. Telematics systems act like a black box, which allows owners and fleet managers to track taxi driver behaviour. The technology records whether drivers accelerate or brake too hard, or leave the engine idling for too long.
Taxi tracking software — the top providers
There are so many software options out there for taxi companies and taxi fleet managers who want to track their cabs and monitor the performance of their fleet and their drivers. But which should you go for?
According to our research, the best taxi tracking software providers are:
- Autocab International
- Digital Dispatch
- Envoy Taxi Dispatch Systems
|Supplier||Live Route Tracking||Hard Braking/|
|Fares Completed||Management Tools||Driver Tools|
|Envoy Taxi Dispatch Systems||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
MTData is one of the biggest players in transport management software. Its taxi dispatch system includes GPS location tracking, as well as advanced tools like management dashboards – using which you can review your fleet's efficiency and performance against your KPIs – and driver performance monitoring, which can inform you of any harsh braking, speeding or excessive fuel usage that goes on. MTData also provides a smart dispatch system, and a driver portal on which your cabbies can see real customer feedback and explore areas for improvement. The software uses 3G and 4G technology to ensure drivers stay connected at all times.
An international company that specialises in taxi fleet management software, Autocab has over 20 years of industry experience – and has built a stellar reputation in that time. Autocab's Ghost Cloud Booking & Dispatch system enables you to check your cabs' live locations and status, and easily assign the closest available driver to incoming jobs. You can also use integrated billing and cashiering, set up an automatic text back function for customer comms, and view insightful business performance reports. Importantly, this software functions solely on the cloud, making it scalable, affordable, and accessible from any device.
Part of the DDS Wireless International Group, Digital Dispatch is a leading provider of dispatching systems for taxi fleets of all sizes. Its TaxiBook software is simple to use, and comes with affordable monthly rates. Specialising in taxi booking and dispatching, TaxiBook includes vehicle tracking and mapping as a key element of this. This software also includes a simple booking system, enables billing and invoicing and driver cashiering, stores a database of addresses and buildings, and enables in-vehicle card payment processing. TaxiBook is hosted on the cloud, with system updates and maintenance taken care of for you.
Envoy Taxi Dispatch Systems
This UK-based company's comprehensive web-based app – the Envoy Taxi Dispatch System – caters specifically to private hire taxi companies. Envoy prides itself on how easy this system is to use, touting it as a “revolutionarily easy way of booking jobs, dispatching taxis and managing customers and drivers”. The Envoy Taxi Dispatch system comes with a variety of handy features, including return and repeat booking functions, an integrated fare calculator for both fixed and metered fares, one-click branded invoice raising, SMS confirmations to customers, and more. Importantly, the company won't tie you down to a lengthy contract – it offers rolling 30-day contracts instead.
How much does taxi tracking software cost?
There are a number of different kinds of taxi dispatch system, all with different prices – ranging from cheap, smart phone-enabled software apps to expensive high-end installations.
Generally speaking, it's possible to either rent software from cab tracking companies, or buy it outright. Renting means avoiding expensive upfront costs while still getting full software and hardware support, with renting on a per-car basis giving you a lot of control over what you pay for.
If you opt to buy your software upfront, you can expect to pay anything from £200 to £1,000, for more high tech systems.
What are the benefits of taxi fleet management software?
There are numerous benefits in having a good tracking system for a taxi fleet of vehicles. Depending on the taxi software selected these could include:
✔ Drivers arrive at pickup points faster because the network of vehicles is better controlled
✔ Dispatchers can assign and reassign drivers quickly to improve resource allocation.
✔ Fuel costs are kept as low as possible thanks to improved efficiency.
✔ Monitoring taxi driver habits reduces the chance of accidents.
✔ Better driving improves customer experience.
✔ Drivers perform better because they are being monitored.
✔ Customer loyalty increases by tracking the best and quickest routes.
✔ Track large fleets as well as small ones and deal with high volume bookings easily.
✔ Check how long a driver has worked, how many jobs they've done and whether they need a break.
✔ Avoid congestion charges in areas like London.
✔ Get accurate details of pickup times and routes in case of a dispute.
Will my drivers find tracking software intrusive?
This is a common problem that is easily overcome in most companies who are introducing tracking software for the first time.
Communicate to your drivers that the tracking software is not being introduced out of mistrust but for the variety of benefits it offers to the business. The better the business does, the better it will be for the employees.
There are also direct employee benefits to vehicle tracking, such as less paperwork to fill out and proof of working hours to guarantee they always get the right amount of pay.
If your drivers use their vehicles in their downtime too, assure them that they will not be tracked during these hours, or any time that they are unaware (covert tracking is illegal). Many vehicle trackers have a privacy buttons feature for this purpose.
There’s no doubt that installing taxi tracking software comes with great benefits. Most taxi fleet management software on the market today is designed to improve vehicle, driver and business performance. Not to mention that such software can reduce costs, in both time and consumables (such as fuel).
Our research has found that MTData, Autocab International, Digital dispatch, and Envoy Taxi Dispatch Systems are all excellent providers of taxi cab tracking and dispatch systems. However, if you'd like a bit of help in finding and choosing the very best provider for your taxi or private car hire business, we can help.
Simply tell us about your business fleet using this quick form, and you'll receive customised quotes from Expert Market-approved suppliers that can set you up with what you need. This process is fast, free and easy – what's not to like?