Ola Ola the cab service company that started with a bang, I remember being one of the first users and also receiving a cake on their anniversary and constantly requesting them for consistent service and it has been that for quite some time.

Over the past couple of months have had weird service and more importantly worse service recoveries.

Case 1

Driver kept talking about how hard they work, and how people do not recognise their work and give just 10-20 bucks as tip; but since you look well travelled and all, you will understand. I did so 😉 And from a micro perspective do not blame Ola Cabs at all.

Case 2

Two consecutive times, booked a Sedan from Lokhandwala to Nariman Point and back. Received an Indica both times. In the morning since I did not have an option took it; in the evening shared my displeasure that this is not done. I was assured that care would be taken to ensure non repeat of this.

Two days later, Nariman Point to Lokhandwala, booked, confirmed and again lands up an Indica. I refuse the vehicle and ask for another one and an explanation. And informed that there are no cars around at that time. I get into another taxi and then a lady – customer service manager calls up and tries to explain the logistics and other details, but is unable to answer –
1) Why send an Indica when you are charging for a Sedan and it is written clearly?
2) There are number of Sedans visible outside Trident, so why could one not have been sent? (Driver tells me that these are for Airport, which is the same distance as my house)
3) How do they intend to cover the regular service lapse? And importantly ensure that it does not keep happening again.

I am told that ‘We’ve credited your account with 150/- which you can use, which had me frothing at the mouth; till they removed the credit. In fact the 20 minutes I wasted twice would have cost more.

Time passed by, I was offered a trial of ‘Luxury’ because I travelled to town a couple of times a week. During the 15 days, every single day I would try and use the app to get a cab and fail miserably. And I had also recommended this to a couple of other friends on Twitter @QTFAN @Theflyingsikh @b50 out of which CJ was lucky enough to get a cab once.

Two months later, last week Case 3

Driver called up on Monday morning that he was unwell and could not make it. Called the replacement guys who could send a driver only by 10 am. So asked my daughter to try TabCab or something; She looked at the app and tried – No sedan as usual, but Luxury was available – booked; text received promptly, car would be there in 20 minutes surprised me pleasantly.

Driver called saying he was on call waiting at Goregaon and hence I could either pay for all of that or sort out with the call centre. Three calls later nothing was sorted out, with two executives saying there is no problem the driver is lying and the final one saying it will take another 20 minutes to send a car, since there was a wrong address input by me.

I lost it, asked him how was the booking made, Sir via APP then how can it show a different address, P. Tandon marg is the cross lane of Lokhandwala etc. went on for a bit, till I was asked point blank, what did I want to do with the booking. Told him to stuff it. My tweet was returned by the Template – Please let us have your CRN nos and we shall get back to you.

I have said this repeatedly that in our country, with practically no infrastructure, the new business that provide service will continue to reign because for every lost consumer, there are 100 to take the service.

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Written by AD
ex waiter, angadia, travel agent, dotcomer, dukaandaar, marketeer, people watcher. appreciates single malt, food, friends