Half of cabbies can now take plastic after Hailo success
ALMOST half of all Dublin taxi drivers now accept credit cards, thanks to the success of smartphone app Hailo.
Some 45pc of Dublin drivers and 30pc of all taxi drivers nationwide have now signed up to the service, meaning they can all take credit card payments through their mobile phones.
Even taxis hailed on the street and not booked through Hailo can use the facility to take card payments, as long as their driver has the app.
The modernisation is a welcome development for the taxi industry, which until recently was slow to embrace technology. Credit card machinery for taxis has been available for decades but was generally expensive, meaning there was little uptake of the facility in Ireland.
Hailo's software processes card payments using a taxi driver's existing smartphone, removing the the need for separate technology and keeping costs down. The facility is secure with numbers blacked out as they are entered.
The Hailo app also allows users to book verified taxis through their smartphone, with driver details made readily available. It has been downloaded nearly 300,000 times in Ireland and more than 1.3m passengers have used the network in Dublin.
The service has been up and running in Dublin for just over a year and was recently introduced in Galway, Cork and Limerick. Dublin was the company's second launch city, after London. It has since opened operations in New York, Barcelona and Madrid, and has plans to expand in Washington DC and Tokyo.
Globally, the company said it handles a cab hail every four seconds.