Taxi technology hits Davao: Pay via ATM or Debit card

Starting Friday, Davao City will have the most advanced mode of payment for cabs.

According to Ryan Tan, assistant manager of Mabuhay Taxi in Davao City, 20 of the company's Black taxis will begin accepting payments from Bancnet and Megalink ATM and debit cards. It's a first for PH and it's happening in Davao City, hundreds of kilometers away from the country's capital.

The company is still working on processing payments by credit card but Tan said it will come soon.

Davao Mayor Sara Duterte also announced this on her Fanpage.

"Starting July 6, 2012, Black Mabuhay Taxis will begin accepting fare payments using Megalink and Bancnet member ATM/Debit Cards," according to the post.

Mabuhay Taxi, with sister company Blue Taxi, has a fleet of more than 200 cabs that will install card readers on all of its cabs, Tan told Yahoo! Southeast Asia.

But even without the electronic payment system, Mabuhay's Black taxi line is already a cut above regular cabs, Tan said. They are equipped with a global positioning system and dispatching is done by a computer.

"For example, if you call us for a cab, we can input that in the system and it will check which cabs are closest to you and tell the driver to go to you," he said. He said the system is identical to the system used by cabs in Singapore.

Tan explained that phone-a-cab services are popular in Davao City but that other operators dispatch cabs by two-way radio.

"We are positioning the Black cabs as an upscale taxi but at the same rate (as regular taxis)," Tan said.

Mabuhay Black has an exclusive taxi stand at SM City Davao and is the exclusive taxi service providers for the Marco Polo Davao Hotel and the Grand Regal Hotel.

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